You can never imagine how one can portray that she is surprised by just wiping her runny nose, you need to see Priyanka Chopra
By Soumyadipta Banerjee
We are used to south films being remade with Hindi dialogues, we are used to Shirish Kunder fall flat on his face with an original idea, we are used to Salman Khan making his biceps dance, we are used to Bipasha Basu showing her amazing abs at the slightest provocation and Emraan Hashmi pressing his lips against anything in a skirt….
Now, imagine a film without sex, violence or a screenplay from the south. Also, throw in a pre-condition that the hero and the heroine wouldn’t speak a word in the film. Any director attempting to make such a movie must be prepared to put his career in a coffin before taking his first shot. It’s a risk that might end your movie-making dreams forever. Just look around in Bollywood and you will find plenty of examples of filmmakers who tried out an original idea only to lose out forever in the rat race of Bollywood.
But people who have succeeded ended up creating a masterpiece. Barfi is just that – a masterpiece which is comparable to India’s best films.
This film will not excite you or thrill you but will melt your heart.
A still from Barfi
Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra are fiercely competitive when they are together on the big screen. They wouldn’t let the other get an edge. In Barfi, there is not a single shot where Ranbir and Priyanka have not excelled. The two have done such a splendid job that they have unfortunately put Ileana D'Cruz an inch behind even though she has given a great performance.
Ranbir Kapoor shows amazing grit and determination as an actor. Portraying a deaf and dumb young man would normally require years of method acting. It is evident that Ranbir has gone through months of method acting while preparing for this role. Look at his on-screen character closely and you will find out that he has watched the earlier films of British actor Rowan Atkinson and Charles Chaplin while preparing for this role. Both Rowan and Chaplin don’t speak a word in these films but yet deliver classic performances and both set respective standards without uttering a single dialogue. Ranbir Kapoor has delivered a performance where he brilliantly mixes the two characters together.
Priyanka Chopra’s character is a little different from Barfi's because her motor responses appear slower than Murphy (Ranbir's screen name). Her capacity to react to most situations seems sub-normal. In real-life instances, you will see that these characters mostly rely on a few expected behavioral clichés while portraying their emotions. Priyanka too expresses her happiness and sorrow through these fixed behavioral patterns rather than break out into laughter or shed tears. Yes, she is brilliant!
You can never imagine how one can portray that she is happy by just wiping her runny nose. You need to see Priyanka perform to believe how it can be done.
Ranbir and Priyanka kindly take a bow. You deserve full respect for your wonderful performances. If we were doling out stars for performance then both of you would have surely scored a perfect five.
Anurag Basu kindly take a bow too
When everybody is busy making remakes of south films, thinking of a film like Barfi requires tremendous courage. Absolute courage, because you never know if the audience will reject your film and you will end up in a trash can with other directors who have ventured off the beaten track. Anurag has shown grit and courage to go full throttle with a subject like Barfi where he portrays the life of a deaf and dumb young boy and makes you laugh even at the grimmest of situations.
There are sad situations in the film where Murphy’s mother dies or say where his parents discover that Barfi (Murphy) is actually deaf and dumb. Believe it or not, when any other Bollywood film director would have ordered tones of glycerine to make everybody on the sets cry buckets during these scenes, Anurag Basu has created these scenes as a comic relief! Imagine! Absolute brilliancy there!
The review would be incomplete without a word of praise for the make-up artiste and the VFX team. The make-up of the characters -- when they grow old – is such brilliant work that you wonder if you have seen better work before. Really, the hard work and the eye for detail have shown on every inch of the characters’ faces. If there’s any award for make-up and if these make-up artistes don’t get it, then the awards are rigged for sure. Ditto for the VFX team. The work that they have done is so good that you actually don’t realize that the film is laden with special effects.
The concept of a Chorus in a Greek tragedy has been beautifully 'transcreated' in this movie and you find a musician trio playing a melancholic tune every time a chapter ends in Barfi's life. For students of Film Studies, this film is an ideal example of how the concept of a classic Greek tragic hero is still relevant to film of our era . It is also interesting to note that most of the classic elements of Greek Renaissance Tragedies like Hubris (the abuse of the hero), Hamartia (the tragic flaw in the hero) etc have been beautifully portrayed in this film. Students who are studying the history of World Cinema must explore this further.
All cinema lovers should see this film
Barfi will make you smile. The film will melt your heart. The film might make you cry too. Miss this film at your own risk.
We have given this film 4.5 stars but we must add here that the film scores a perfect five if we had decided to add another 0.5 stars only for Anurag Basu who came back on the pitch like Yuvraj Singh to deliver such a brilliant piece of work. Yes, Anurag Basu had such acute Lukaemia that doctors had declared that he had only two months to live.
Perhaps the ability to laugh at your worst makes you a better creator. Much like Barfi. We will wait for your ratings from Friday morning, do tell us whether you agree with us or not.
In.com rating: 4.5 stars
Here's the trailer of Barfi
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