Wednesday, September 05, 2007


Watching a film for the second time often tempers initial reactions and rash judgements. It is a good opportunity to sit back and let the story run its course while you begin to notice scenes, actions and gestures previously overlooked. I went to see Chak De with a friend for the second time and realised that while there are some gaps in the storytelling and hints of over-indulgence, by and large the film comes together quite well. This is not a review. Merely a few observations borne out of a fresh perspective.

- Great directing of the sporting action by director and cinematographer. The action is superbly filmed and places the game with all its nuances in the spotlight.

- Sensitive handling of sound. Split-second delays, restrained use of background music and treatment of silences as sound added value to the action

- Superb construction of certain key charcters. Especially Bindiya Naik whose conflicts and angst are laid bare in the manner in which she is framed in the film.

-Great acting by Shilpa Shukla whose body language was powerful and evocative, as she tried to bring the world-weary, no-nonsense Bindiya Naik to life. In the scenes she shares with Shahrukh she rises in stature and is on par every step of the way.

- The camera was eloquent when it came to the staging of particularly tense moments or moments of despair. The close-ups of the players at key points controlled the mood of the scene beautifully.

- The last scene was unnecessary and too overtly sentimental. The little sikh boy was just too much. I'm sure he used the hockey stick to beat up a small kid.

- Abhimanyu singh had the worst lines in the film. Even if his character was essentially a wimp his dailogues made sure he came across as a complete moron.

- The resolution of bindiya's conflict was far too simple and dispensed off without enough thought. It was an oversimplification of an otherwise complex character.

At the end of the day its an entertaining film. Definitely worth a watch.