Films | SAARE JAHAAN SE MEHENGA – Movie Review


Posted by FATEMA H.KAGALWALA on March 10, 2013 | No Comments

PRODUCER – Ashok Pandey
DIRECTOR – Anshul Sharma
WRITER – Upesh Thapliyal, Vijay Manral
CAST – Sanjay Mishra, Vishwa Mohan Badola, Pragati Pandey, Zakir Hussain, Ranjan Chabbra, Disha Pandey, Pramod Pathak, Paritosh Sand
MUSIC – Manish J. Tipu

Saare Jahaan Se Mehenga, as the name suggests, is about that devil of rising prices that never seems to leave the average Indian at peace. Puttanlal (Sanjay Mishra) and family are one such average family struggling to meet everyday demands until he thinks up a unique plan to battle the inflation curse. Naive and simple as Puttan is, so is his plan, and soon it begins to crack as the law begins to catch up. To keep up, he then mobilizes his supportive wife Noori (Pragati Pandey), unemployable younger brother Gopal (Ranjan Chabbra) and the old and cranky father and sets up a charade to evade the authorities.

Made with an eye on addressing a large social concern, the film employs a slice-of-life treatment with a stark ordinariness about everything. Set in Haryana, its world is strictly middle-class with everything plain, loud and unseemly that goes with it. It is peopled with very regular looking actors, camera-friendliness be damned. The film takes pains to authenticate its realism shunning prettiness with a vengeance but alas it doesn’t work much in its favour.

The film is a simple story, not really message-oriented, more inclined towards exploring the tragi-comical aspects of a middle class family’s struggles. But it is failed by simplistic writing and amateurish direction that neither endears its world to us nor engages our sympathies. It even has a completely unnecessary love angle and song churned out of a half-baked romance. Out of entire cast, Sanjay Mishra and Zakir Hussain hold our attention on when everyone around them simply become a test of patience.

The film has its heart in the right place and even touches upon the contemporary issue of Indian black money stashed in foreign banks. It tries to weave it all through a light humour, looking at this world with a slight laugh and resigned shake of head. But we all know it isn’t enough for a film to have mere good intentions.

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