Laal Singh Chaddha Rating 2.0/5 & Rating
LAAL SINGH CHADDHA is the story of man’s extraordinary journey. Laal Singh Chaddha (Aamir Khan) was born in 1971 as the son of Gurpreet (Mona Singh). Separated from her husband, she is raising Laal alone in the village of Karoli, near Pathankot, Punjab. As a young boy (Ahmad bin Umer) he gets leg braces as he has difficulty walking. In addition, he has a low IQ, which makes him an object of ridicule at school. But Rupa Dsouza (Hafsa Ashraf), his classmate, becomes his close friend. Laal immediately falls in love with her. Both are also studying at the same college in Delhi. One day, while being chased by some thugs, Laal accidentally enters his college grounds and the athletic trainer (Shrikanth Verma) hires him after seeing him running at the speed of light. Laal competes in ongoing tournaments for his college and becomes champion. He continues to love Rupa. But Rupa likes him as a friend and is in love with Harry (Guneet Singh Sodhi). She wants to be a model and actress and moves to Mumbai. Laal, meanwhile, joins the army like his ancestors did. During training, he becomes friends with Bala (Chaitanya Akkineni). His ancestors designed underwear for men and it is his dream to start an underwear business. They become so close that he offers Laal a partnership in his future business. Laal accepts it. Unfortunately, in 1999, the Kargil War breaks out and Bala dies. What happens next forms the rest of the film.
LAAL SINGH CHADDHA is an Indian adaptation of FORREST GUMP . The story is unique, Atul Kulkarni’s adapted screenplay (original screenplay by Eric Roth) has its share of pluses. The author’s greatest achievement is that the story has been beautifully nativeized. Also, he made the film a lot less dark than the original, especially in regards to Rupa’s character. But the writing is stretched and could have been shortened. Atul Kulkarni’s dialogues (additional Punjabi dialogues by Rana Ranbir) are sweet and simple.
Advait Chandan’s direction is neat. The way he connects one track of the film to another is seamless. A few scenes stand out as they are well executed. On the other hand, the film’s biggest culprit is the second half. While the first half is almost 1 hour 15 minutes long, the second half lasts more than 1 hour 25 minutes. The remake is almost 22 minutes longer than FORREST GUMP and you can feel that in the second half. Several scenes will test viewers’ patience and the creators should have trimmed the length for better impact. The romantic track is cute in a few places, but overall it’s not entirely convincing. A few plot points are interesting, like the track by Mohammed Bhai (Manav Vij), but it will be hard for viewers to digest. Finally, the treatment is such that it is not suitable for a mass audience.
Speaking of performances, Aamir Khan is in great shape and has the character. In some scenes he only communicates through his eyes, especially in the current episode, proving once again that he is one of the best actors of our time. At first he overdoes it a bit with his acting in the racing scenes. But he makes up for it in the rest of the film. Kareena Kapoor Khan looks like a million dollars and delivers a brilliant performance. Mona Singh is adorable. Despite the small role, Chaitanya Akkineni leaves a big mark. Manav Vij is a surprise and doing well. Ahmad bin Umer and Hafsa Ashraf are cute. Shrikanth Verma, Guneet Singh Sodhi and Harry Parmar (Abbas Haji) are fine. Kamini Kaushal (old lady on the train), Arun Bali (Sardarji on the train) and Aarya Sharma (lady on the train) are doing well. Vijay Maurya (Dawood) is only there for one scene. Sowmyashree Belur (Bala’s wife) gets no leeway. Shah Rukh Khan is great.
Laal Singh Chaddha: Official Trailer | Aamir Khan | Kareena Kapoor Khan
Pritam’s music is soothing to the ears, but none of the songs will last long. ‘Kahani’ is the best song of the crowd. ‘Tur Kalleyan’ works as it comes at an important point. ‘Main Ki Karaan’, ‘Phir Na Aisi Raat Aayegi’ and ‘Tere Hawaale’ don’t leave a big footprint.
Tanuj Tiku’s background music is cinematic. Setu’s cinematography is outstanding and certainly some of the best cinematography in recent memory. Mustufa Stationwala’s production design is rich. Jogender Gupta’s makeup (for Aamir Khan) is spot on. Maxima Basu’s costumes are realistic and glamorous in the case of Kareena. Parvez Shaikh’s action is bloodless. Redchillies.vfx’s VFX conforms to global standards. Hemanti Sarkar’s edit is not up to date.
Overall, LAAL SINGH CHADDHA is adorned with fine performances and beautiful moments. However, the overly long length and the slow pace in the second half speak against the film. At the box office, it will benefit from Raksha Bandhan from the evening and also from the long, extended weekend [Thu – Mon]. However, its business would only be limited to subway audiences and also premium multiplexes.