Finally, I got done watching the most talked about Bollywood movie of 2007- Taare Zameen Par. Most of the websites and blogs have even finished reviewing it…and mine comes very late. But that’s all right, because not many people will agree with what I’ve got to say next.
When the movie started, I really felt as if I can finally expect something good from a mainstream Bollywood movie. Darsheel Safary, as Ishaan, captivated me right from the first scene, where he’s shown playing with fish in a dirty puddle of water, totally oblivious to his surroundings. I really enjoyed the colorful artwork that was shown during the opening credits. The first half of the movie was amazing. Ishaan’s struggle with the orthodox educational system is given full justice. I was telling myself, ” Aamir Khan as a director, is very good!”. Perhaps I shouldn’t have let that thought enter my mind.
The movie starts going downhill as soon as Aamir Khan enters the classroom, dressed like a clown. What exactly was the point of having that scene in the movie? All I want is a realistic movie. Is that too much from him? Mr. Perfectionist? This scene is followed by a trip to a school for special children. Then comes the title song “Taare Zameen Par”, interspersed with a lot of tear jerking scenes. Between all this, Aamir Khan, the honorary arts teacher, suddenly realizes that he’s almost forgotten about Ishaan. So off he goes to Ishaan’s house to talk to his parents and make them understand that Ishaan is dyslexic.
After managing to do that, he single handedly makes all the other teachers and the principal understand about Ishaan’s problem. Wait! We’re not done yet. Next, he teaches Ishaan how to read and write (Ishaan’s hand writing improves trememdously!). He teaches Ishaan to become “normal” in that the young boy is shown buttoning up his shirt, tying his shoe laces and his tie and combing his hair. Wasn’t Aamir Khan fighting against the set order and the “normal” way of doing things in the first place? What an irony!
A kid whose hand writing is almost indecipherable, somehow, miraculously improves it to an unbelievable extent…all because of the encouragement and the love that he receives from a teacher. Now I understand why people accuse Aamir Khan of being a “scene stealer”. The movie became just about him after he entered the scene. The boy, Darsheel Zafary, is reduced to a toy, who is used to show off Aamir’s greatness.
And let me not even talk about the Arts Show that is organized towards the end. No prizes for guessing who wins it!
If you’re still reading this review, then I’m sure that you must be abusing me by now. I’m not bashing this movie because I hate Aamir Khan or because I hate Bollywood. I really wanted to like this movie and I really did, until Aamir entered the scene and reduced it to a tear jerker. Where is the subtlety?
This movie is worth a watch only because of Darsheel Zafary’s amazing acting and the beautiful artwork in the opening scene. The background score was overdone. Shankar Mahadevan needs to hire someone else to sing some of his songs. He’s becoming really boring and predictable. And Aamir…it’s better if you stay behind the curtains.
Edit: And if you thought that the 3*9=3 scene was an original masterpiece, like I did, then think again. Wanderlust (Please go to her blog for another amazing review) and Ish informed me that the scene was blatantly lifted from Calvin & Hobbes.
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