Aamir - Notepad

wogma rating: Buy the DVD already (?)
quick review:

There isn't one single department which can claim that it carried Aamir on its shoulders. Each and everything - make-up, set design/locations, background music, lighting, camera work, dialogue, and of course acting work towards creating the build-up and the final impact. And what's more religious fundamentalism is dealt with subtlety - the lost virtue. It has been maintained almost throughout, except for the abruptness of the background music in parts and the portrayal of the antagonist.

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This page has additional observations, other than the ones noted in the main review.

Plot Summary

Aamir (Rajeev Khandelwal) has returned from UK to India after finishing his education as a Doctor. He is in for the rudest shock of his life the hour he reaches India.

What Worked

  • The manner in which Bombay's cityscape is covered. The regular things on a regular morning are shown in such a light manner. Just to show how on such a regular day in the city, Aamir is going to go through the worst day of his life. I liked this especially because I usually find cityscapes boring, especially lengthy coverage.
  • The use of handheld camera to portray Aamir's confusion at the airport when he is looking for his family while pushing the trolley.
  • Little elements that add to the frustration of Aamir and thus the audience - like him getting into a taxi and then realizing that the driver doesn't know the way to the destination.
  • The way it is shown that Aamir feels like everyone is looking at him...really creates a creepy feeling.
  • Use of the traffic signal as a timer.
  • The dig on media by alluding to the fact that they are so unaware of the reality.

What did not

Note: This section simply lists the things that I did not like in this movie. This is not the overall impression about this movie. Please read the full review here

  • Can eye-bags really develop within the course of a few hours? Aamir who is absolutely fresh a few hours ago, has eye-bags now because of the stress he has endured in that time. Cinematic liberty?
  • The use of "Karachi" seems forced into the conversation. The lines using "Karachi" didn’t flow like the lines in the rest of the movie.
  • The giggly prostitute was very annoying - maybe that's what she was meant to do.
  • Inane dialogues to side characters. E.g. The guy who takes Aamir to the don who gives him the side character says, "bhoola kahaan, raasta to aaj yaad aaya" (I didn't forget, I remembered the way just today) What is it supposed to mean?

Nitty-Gritty

This section lists things that I think are not important to the overall impact of the movie. In most cases, it could be explained away by something like, "we noticed the glitch after the scene was shot and there were schedule/budget issues and thus we could not re-shoot it". I like giving the makers the benefit of doubt, but I am amused nevertheless. Hopefully, they will tickle you too.

  • A couple of product placements blended well with the general natural feel of the movie. Otherwise, these are rather irritating and on-the-face.
  • The taxi's number was MH 03 6688. Number plates of vehicles in Maharashtra have two letter in between the two digit and the four digit numbers. Where did that disappear?
  • A sign reading 'RISARVAD' instead of "Reserved" in a restaurant. Cute but a little overkill, maybe?
  • There was this guy in a blue shirt who was talking to a policeman. He was shown passing from right to left twice with a cut of Rajeev Khandelwal talking to the phone booth lady in between. How come twice in such a short time? Looked like some error.