Saturday, March 25, 2017

Phillauri (Movie Review)

Phillauri: Only Love is Real!
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Phillauri is a tale of a woman called Shashi (Anushka Sharma), from a nondescript village Phillaur not too far from Amritsar, who is stranded in time since 98 years waiting for her missing beloved Roop Lal (Diljit Dosanjh) to return to her. This story of Phillauri reminds me about many books Dr. Brian Weiss and his likes have written on souls and the power of love to transcend time and eras to come back again and again to be with their loved ones.

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The film begins with the preparation of a Punjabi family to receive their young Canada returned rapper son Kannan Gill (Suraj Sharma) for his pre-nuptial ceremony with his childhood love Anu ( Mehreen Pirzada) in Amritsar. The young boy is for a shock when he is advised by a family pundit that he being a ‘Manglik’ should marry a tree to ward off bad luck before he actually marries his love. Compelled and cajoled by his lover and both the families the reluctant bridegroom-to-be yields to tie the knot with a tree. Back from this so-called ritual he finds himself haunted by a beautiful spirit who hovers around him puzzled not knowing herself what she has to do with a boy who is all set to marry Anu.

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Debutant Director Anshai Lal’s film deals with a tricky plot which tells us two love stories parallel to each other one in 2017 and one that happened in 1919 in pre-independent era between a village girl unknown to the world about her talent to write soulful poems and a folksinger infamous for his casual affairs with many young girls who fall for his soulful voice. The film has its highs and lows. Kanan’s weed-puffing character initially attracts but slowly it loses its charm because he continues to stay bemused to what is happening in his life. A helpless, pleading and vulnerable bride-to-be Anu slowly fails to hold the empathy of the viewers for long. Anushka Sharma ad Diljit Dosanjh’s charm over shadows the characters of Kannan and Anu.

Having said this kudos to the filmmaker and his team for coming up with a different love story. The Biji (Grandmother) of the family and her love for old folk songs and the one Baisakhi which she never want to remember is touching. The end for sure shall move many.

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Anushka as Shashi and Diljit Dosanjh as a folksinger are endearingly charming and impactful. Suraj Sharma with his debut in Ang Lee’s ‘Life of Pi’ and then in ‘Million Dollar Arm and Umrika is pretty good at trying his hand in comedy in Phillauri as a bemused would be husband. Mehreen Pirzada is beautiful and hope she finds more opportunity to excel as an actor. Manv Vij as Shashi’s doctor brother is outstanding. He lives the character on screen. The songs are soulful and shall stay with you for long.

Go and watch Phillauri to know that “Love is an inner flowering. One cannot find it outside. It is within. What you find out shall leave and what is inside shall stay with you forever because love is immortal”!

Life Connoisseur Movie Rating: 3.25 /5

Cast: Anushka Sharma  (Shashi), Diljit Doasnjh (Roop Lal), Suraj Sharma (Kannan Gill), Mehreen Pirzada (Anu), Nidhi Bisht, Manav Vij

Genre: Drama, Fantasy

Director: Anshai Lal

Producers: Anushka Sharma, Karnesh Sharma

Written by: Anvita Dutt

Screenplay: Anvita Dutt

Cinematography: Vishal Sinha

Music by: (Songs) Shashwat Sachdev, Jasleen Royal; (Background Score) Sameer Uddin

Production Company: Fox Star Studios, Clean Slate Films

Distributors: Fox Star Studios, Clean Slate Films

Date: 24th March, 2017

Duration: 137 Minutes

Language: Hindi