Release Date: 18th August, 2017
Cast: Huma Qureshi, Manish Dayal, Om Puri, Hugh Bonneville, Gillian Anderson, Michael Gambon
Writer/Director: Gurinder Chadha
Producer/s: Paul Mayeda Berges, Gurinder Chadha, Deepak Nayar
Rating: 3/5 Stars (Three Stars)
Star Cast: Late Mr. Om Puri, Hugh Bonneville, Gillian Anderson, Lily Travers, Denzil Smith, Tanveer Ghani, Neeraj Kabi, Manish Dayal, Huma Qureshi, Arunoday Singh.
Director: Gurinder Chadha
What’s Good: Visualisation of vintage India, pace of the film, the gripping factor & performances.
What’s Bad: Lack of connect with the pain of the situation, half baked plot making it look unconvincing.
Loo Break: Quite a few! Even if you don’t want to piss.
Watch or Not?: Watch it to revisit the vintage India.
Year is 1947 and the story starts with welcoming the latest and last Viceroy of India – Lord Louis Mountbatten. He has given the responsibility of transferring the freedom of India to its citizens peacefully. He’s warmly welcomed as he starts authorising his powers to complete the task he has been given. As he goes through the situation he realizes that this is not going to be easy as India is already internally divided.
Mountbatten decides to meet up with Mahatma Gandhi, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and Muhammad Ali Jinnah to go through what they think and want. After meeting them he is forced to do something which he is not willing, Partition. The whole film is about how the Partition was executed and how it affected both the nations which were united back then. It’s about how Lady Edwina, Mountbatten’s wife, tries to stop the impossible and where does she ends up with her husband.
Partition: 1947 Review: Script Analysis
The movie on paper is a winner. It’s something you wish should offer more. It’ll keep you intrigued till the end but it will not convince you entirely about the events happening. If only the makers would’ve concentrated more on the building up of facts, the story could’ve been different. The way Gurinder has presented the Viceroy’s House is commendable. Not for a single moment you feel it’s India from 1947.
Few sequences are handled brilliantly to support the thrilling impact. The way Chadha has binded the underlying love story of Huma Qureshi & Manish Dayal with a plot which is near to perfection. It’s perfect because at no point the love story comes in the way of the main plot or vice versa. Another minor issue with the film is it rushes towards the end. If you show a journey from pre-independence till the judgment, you need to concentrate on both the portions. Once you build up the castle, you need to decorate the terrace as well. The film falls a bit short in explaining the events happened on the judgment day, may be the director wanted to keep it tight (106 minutes).
Partition: 1947 Review: Star Performance
I, ideally, would’ve started with Hugh Bonneville (Lord Mountbatten) but I’ll not. Because, no matter for how short duration Late Mr. Om Puri was with his role, he will make you miss him. He plays father to Huma Qureshi and shines in his role of a blind Muslim father who doesn’t wants the partition to happen. There’s a scene where Huma Qureshi cries with him and that’s where you realise what Bollywood has lost.
Hugh Bonneville as Lord Mountbatten lives his role to the core. He is honest with his performance convincing you to trust him throughout the film. Gillian Anderson as Lady Edwina Mountbatten is a perfect choice. She has a lot under her sleeve, still goes underrated throughout the process. Lily Travers as Lady Pamela Mountbatten, daughter of the Viceroy, is decent for whatever time she is on the screen.
Denzil Smith as Muhammad Ali Jinnah Tanveer Ghani as Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and Neeraj Kabi as Mahatma Gandhi are the pillars of this film. Though Mountbatten is on the front seat of this vehicle, but these three are ones handling the direction where the film is going. It’s always good to explore some unknown things about your history and this film provides some.
Manish Dayal as Jeet Kumar and Huma Qureshi as Aalia Noor are the salient heroes of this film. Yes, their love track is secondary to the main plot but it’s been mixed very well with it. Huma Qureshi gives a very good performance and compliments Late Mr. Om Puri very well. I’m sure she’ll too get teary eyed after she sees herself with him on big screen for one last time. Arunoday Singh as Asif plays the role of a guy with whom Aalia is scheduled to get married. He is okay with his performance, nothing great.