DIRECTOR: Omung Kumar
CAST: Randeep Hooda, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Richa Chadda, Darshan Kumar
STORY: ‘Sarabjit’ is a intense portrayal of the tragedy of an innocent family centric farmer Sarabjit Singh living at the Indo-Pak border and how he gets stucked into a legacy of hatred for no fault of his own. And how his sister Dalbir struggles to get justice for her imprisoned brother.
REVIEW: Sarbjit Singh (Randeep Hooda) is a farmer who’s a doting brother, husband and father drunkenly wanders across the India-Pakistan border, a milestone in a field, merrily singing ‘Jai Jai Shiv Shankar’, suddenly captured and humiliated in the most despicable ways into Pakistani jail. It comes out as hell of a prison, Sarbjit is locked in a box, drowned in water and rats, tortured to say he’s Ranjit Singh, the mastermind behind the ghastly Lahore blasts.
As Sarabjit struggles to survive, on the other hand his sister Dalbir Kaur (Aishwarya Rai Bachchan) makes nevertheless efforts to attain freedom and justice for her brother. Sarabjit’s wife Sukhpreet (Richa Chadha) raises two daughters Poonam (Ankita Shrivastava) and Swapan (Shivani Saini) with a patient resolve and languishes. Dalbir running from CM to indifferent PM, eating under dusty trees, holding dharnas in streets, while Sarbjit desperately collects whatever vestiges of family that he could through stray letters. As his home slowly collapses and father dies. Whereas, a Pakistani lawyer Awais Shaikh (Darshan Kumaar) takes over Sarbjit’s case and battles out of several forces to try and grab of justice for Sarabjit and his family.
In terms of acting Randeep Hooda outstandingly portrayed Sarabjit Singh with utter sweetness – ever-smiling, no bitterness mars Sarabjit’s face. He doesn’t hesitate in showing the ugly reality or the constant oscillation between sanity and losing his mind. As in 12 years of slavery, the hope to live and love keeps Sarabjit going, his nails and teeth growing black as he gets an annual bar of soap, cherishing a fragment of moonlight, excitedly washing his rags before his family visits – after 18 years of his imprisonment. Randeep did a commendable job.
Whereas, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan as Dalbir Kaur delivers the lifetime performance. There are theatrical moments like Dalbir addressing a Red Fort rally or ticking off fatwa fans in Lahore. In trying to show her strain, Dalbir’s make-up grows too grey, the effort too palpable. But scenes like Dalbir being hit by gunmen of the Punjab CM, who watches with elegant disinterest, will definitely hit you. The vacuousness in her eyes and the shocked body state sends shivers down your spine. Richa Chadha never tries to compete with Aishwarya or Randeep but her silence speaks volumes. She makes a solid impact. While Darshan plays Sarbjit’s lawyer Awais with a breeziness that’s a tad over the top.
Director Omung Kumar did a speechless job. He depicted a human being and a human truth – individuals often face prisons of politics where the innocent can be shackled in darkness. Kiran Deohans’ camera work captures the essence of the mood and context perfectly. Rajesh Pandey’s editing is good though it could have been slightly more crisper than the final version.
“Sarabjit” is a story smeared with blood, tears and sweat. It will breaks your heart with emotion beings. A must watch movie poured up by Omung and a landmark film with great performances and a superbly told narrative. As Humans come and go. Humanity survives.