Hard Hitting

Vishal Bhardwaj

Bashrat Peer

Film Review
Haider:Hard Hitting


Soul Stirring Kahwahyes

Spoiler Warning – Low

fact – Hot & steaming Kahwah, Wah Ustaad Wah..smiley

FACT – Arey Huzoor wah Shakespeare boliye..
fact – That’s your tribute..your humility, btw such a seamless and transcending adaptation.. one just doesn’t feel this is a tale of different culture & times. While there is so much cold around us, being “woken up” by this hot cup of Kahwah is a direct soul-kick. And you have made it so smooth, looks like you added generous strands of Kashmiri Saffron..      

FACT – Neurotic you, again getting into the recipe..why can’t you just recline in the shikara and enjoy the drink like most of them.. must you get into hair splitting..?
fact – Dear, majority loves to enjoy their drink or food, only a few nuts like us bother with this head scratching in hope of discovering & learning something new. We take the tougher route over their easier one, because we love to enjoy intellectual orgasm while they love their sensual one. Let everyone have his/her way based on individual capabilities.  enlightened

FACT – Yes I added strands of saffron, crushed almonds too.
fact – Otherwise it wouldn’t have been so colourful, so red. I see red colour used abundantly ..

FACT – Let’s not gulp the Kawha, sip it bit by bit..
fact – Yes, that’s right.

Dr. Meer (Narendra Jha, it says MD Surgeon, should it be MS Surgeon? whatever..) staying true to his profession saves life of a patient who happens to be a militant. He is picked up by the forces and his house is blasted. Haider (Shahid) is off to AMU for studies. He was sent to keep him away from the growing unrest in the region. When he returns, he is shocked to find his mother Ghazala (Tabu) living with his uncle Khurram “happily”. Disturbed Haider begins search for his disappeared father, where we also see the disturbed Kashmir. At midpoint Haider meets Ruhdaar (Irfan) a co-prisoner with his father, who informs him about his father’s death & delivers his message that uncle Khurram got him arrested/killed because he had designs on Ghazala. So he wanted Haider to take his revenge. The emotional turmoil at home and intense desire for vengeance drifts Haider towards the militancy..          

FACT – That is perfect transplantation of the original play.
fact – Sure it is. The screenplay is weaved perfectly making it as much a classic as the original play. A piece of art has several interpretations, as we can interpret metaphors here..

The house represents the troubled valley – something that was elegantly decorated, which now is devastated. Haider himself representing the youth, an innocent poet gradually getting dragged into militancy as he finds them closer than his own people who are mostly deceiving (including friends), Tabu perhaps personifies the common populace which is in search of peace and security often finding themselves in wrong hands – represented by Khurram nicely as a lawyer initially and a politician eventually.yes

Ruhdaar could be representing the ISI which for disturbed local youth seem like friend but could be cunning themselves to achieve their agenda. It is Ruhdaar who tells Haider that his father wanted revenge, but his mother eventually tells him Vengeance begets vengeance..real freedom is freedom from vengeance. The actual message of the film.. We also feel here she could be right because how come a man like Dr. Meer, who risks his life to save a life would ask his son to take someone’s life as revenge?
Such films come in with a lot to mull over.enlightened

The red muffler representing love, heartwhich becomes a trap for the lover and eventually is undone back to threads.. a sort of “break-up”. Red colour is used ample which looks so beautiful when adorning Shradha & Tabu, but so grotesque when we see bloodied dead-bodies strewn all over the snow clad terrain.  sad         

FACT – So much to study. Want some more Kahwa?
fact – Yes, I can have some more. There must be more to this, something we know, something we don’t, something that might come to us after a while. We have to keep looking for it by revisiting the text whenever we can.  enlightened

Like characters of Haider & Ghazala. Their complex changing equation. He loves her as mother and is angry with her for conniving with his uncle to kill his father. Tabu’s character vis-à-vis three men in her life. She comes as helpless yet as a strong pivot which drives the actions of the other major characters.

The occasional doses of humour as the Salmans in plural & chutzpah lighten the mood as the intense drama builds up. laugh 

FACT – Well as our usual fussy self, any problem any logic, anything that as a writer you find questionable.  frown
fact – Humm, it's a such a well-made film that we hardly find anything wrong, but nevertheless for sake of it, there is a question indeed. If only Ghazala and Dr. Meer knew about the militant being treated at their house and if she informs this only to Khurram and next morning there is army crack-down, can’t she make out that it must be only Khurram who has informed the police about it? All the while she is living with a man and with the biggest tragedy of her life, won’t you question him once for the connection when he is the only link? surprise

FACT – Humm, it is possible that army had their own informers?
fact – Ok if she gave him any benefit of doubt, we don’t see that. And if so, the same benefit of doubt would then apply in the end also. How come he becomes villain in the end with same given facts?

FACT – People are also finding it too much anti-establishment?angry
fact – I think as discussed above, the film is staying true to its story without taking sides. Unlike most film taking clichéd route to show character becoming a terrorist here, the story organically emerges from Haider’s domestic problems. He is pushed out and he falls in the valley getting caught in the quagmire of militancy. Major Murthy (Ashish Vidyarthi) voices the army’s PoV too. Kashmiri Pundits do not find much representation but it seems there was no scope in the adaptation for such story. But best part is the message which is voiced several times in the film, thro’ Haider’s grandfather (Kulbhushan Kharbanda), thro’ Ghazala that Violence is not the solution. In the end when Haider can easily take his revenge he chooses to spare his uncle.. surprise  

FACT – The film sure will earn accolades around the world.  yes
fact – 100%. In long time we got a nicely crafted film with strong social message. And it is an adaptation world will appreciate. But this Kahwah is not everyone’s cup of tea. People flock theatres reading excellent reviews and then start talking & disturbing others. Also please keep kids at home, we usually ask you to take them along but this time, savour the Kahwah yourself and let them drink Mountain Dew.. they will enjoy it more.cheeky


   Sanjay Sharma

https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1754709196. www.ftiiscreenwriters.com

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