Readers Write In #232: A near perfect family drama

Posted on July 29, 2020

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(by Vikram MN)

In fact, its perfect family drama if you negate the fact that it happens in Coonoor but you can’t see a single south Indian or a single person who talks Tamil properly. If you gonna make a film sans authenticity why chose a place where none speak Hindi. It could have been easily anywhere else. Except for this little mistake, it was a perfect film. May be non-Tamil people wouldn’t have found it to be such a big mistake, after all Alia Bhatt was a Tamil brahmin in ‘2 States’. Definitely this is not worse than that. But ‘2 states’ is not a movie to be taken seriously, ‘Kapoor & sons’ is.

I was happy that I chose a film which I always wanted to watch, for my landmark 500th movie review. The movie was really special. It was interesting from the word go. I carefully prepared myself by watching ‘Ek Main AurEkk Tu’ which by itself wasn’t a bad film at all. So, with ‘Kapoor & sons’ with that much critical acclaim, I was sure it’d definitely be good. Like how directors have taken action films for granted in Tamil cinema. Hindi cinema directors have taken family drama for granted. So, to see mainstream actors in a family drama with a title as rigid as ‘Kapoor & sons’, I never thought the movie would be good, at the time of release. Plus, it had a party song like every other Hindi film at that time, which was again a huge hit so it had all the criteria to be safely negated.

While discussing about Alia Bhatt, one of my friends rightly pointed about house she had become a household face like Sai Pallavi for us. The way we feel that Sai Pallavi belongs in our space, we tend to feel the same for Alia Bhatt, no matter how cheesy the film is, she’d be spirited in her role. Just like SRK. Sincere most performers on screen for bad scripts. In fact, when it comes to Alia Bhatt, her roles in commercial movies are better than the acclaimed ones. Here too she gets introduced in “Kar Gayi Chull” and steals our heart right away.

One thing which happens differently from other films which Alia Bhatt had acted is that, in other films we always tend to wait for her to appear but here she has limited screen space and the stories of others are more complicated and something to look forward to, than hers. But just like every film of hers, she delivers a standout bursting out scene. It’s not one of the great scenes of the film definitely, maybe that’s why Shakun Batra chose her. In all other scenes, the script would make you clap, but this scene required a performer like Alia Bhatt to make us notice.

The film starts with two brothers Rahul (Fawad Khan) and Arjun (Sidharth Malhotra)coming to India to attend to their grandfather Amarjeet, played by an amazing Rishi Kapoor. Not having watched much of his movies when he was younger, this was surely his standout performance for me. The disoriented family couldn’t get better than this, they fight, they quarrel, they hate each other but still there is some sort of chemistry which keeps them together, even though they’re not entirely happy. It’s extremely difficult to write like that, every time we see a character, we could see the story from their shoes.

It’s not only the family affair which was written well but also the character of Tia (Alia Bhatt), again what a charmer she is. Her role was superb and the way the casual relationship was shown between her and Rahul was brilliant. Generally, it’s a kind of scene which would make us feel guilty for supporting her but in this specific sequence we feel it as to be as casual how they both felt. Especially when Arjun is all worked up about that, the way Rahul just brushes it aside was the exact feeling we get out of the situation. Even though, a girlfriend of guy kissing her brother would look horrible in paper, the way it was made was superb.

Generally, a problem with these kinds of films would happen when they try to streamline things and close in during the climax. I was fearing that this movie too would lose its genuineness by trying to be sane and preach us what family means. But the way those sequences were handled was brilliant. When each of them comes up with something they’ve done for the others it was a revelation. Rahul’s story would come out as true revelation but kudos to the director for being sensible and not making it dramatic.

The most hurting incident was the things which happen to Arjun. Sidharth Malhotra doesn’t have much to do here but he was so apt for the good boy role. A typical Kamal role of the 70s, so the incidents happening to him was heart wrenching. Sunita effortlessly carries on her role which irritates us to the most part and personally for me, the thing that she did was most affecting. So, coming from her, it was even more affecting. In the end when an always charming grandfather calls the grandsons, even the toughest of hearts would melt. The family photo which he wishes too doesn’t happen exactly like wanted. Even though, happy for the present, it leaves us all with a bit of sadness, and that’s a great way of leaving theatres.