LIFF 2015 Movie Review: ‘Dhanak’


The London Indian Film Festival celebrates its sixth year with the 2015 edition, which kick-started on 16th July.�� One of the many independent Indian films being screened at the festival this year is Nagesh Kukunoor�۪s ��Dhanak�۪ (Rainbow).�� The film had already won many hearts at the 65th Berlin International Film Festival, even managing to bag two awards at the same; its UK premiere took place this weekend across various locations in London.

��Dhanak�۪ tells the story of 10-year-old Pari (Hetal Gada), who is a Shah Rukh Khan fan, and her blind younger brother, Chotu (Krrish Chhabria), who happens to be a die-hard Salman Khan fan.�� After the death of their parents, the siblings live with their uncle and aunt in Rajasthan.�� Owing to the family�۪s poor conditions, they are unable to afford eyesight-restoration surgery.�� However, Pari is persistent with her dream of Chotu being gifted with the sense of vision.�� On discovering that Shah Rukh Khan is shooting for his next movie in her home state, and seeing a poster of the actor endorse sight-restoration surgery, Pari is sure Khan will be able to help her brother.�� Pari and Chotu soon set out on a journey to the city of Jaisalmer to meet Khan, in hope of him helping Chotu.

Kukunoor succeeds in telling an emotional story whilst also keeping it light-hearted and entertaining. ��Best known for his work in ��Iqbal�۪ (2005), ��Dor�۪ (2006) and ��Lakshmi�۪ (2014), the director maintains his trademark realism and captures human emotions aptly.�� The film�۪s screenplay writer, editor and cinematographer also excel with their respective jobs.

Although all of the actors in the film deliver wonderfully natural performances, there is no doubt that Gada and Chhabria, being the protagonists, leave the most impact.�� Despite being children, the duo perform with absolute finesse and the emotional scenes with them tug at the viewer�۪s heart, as you feel they truly are Pari and Chotu respectively.�� Among the supporting actors, Flora Saini as a tribal woman, stands out with a strong performance.

A subtle and simple heart-warming story, ��Dhanak�۪ will appeal to all who enjoy emotional stories.�� With elements of comedy, the film will also possibly appeal to the section of audience who enjoy mainstream movies.�� The many references to Bollywood superstars Shah Rukh Khan and Salman Khan are also sure to please fans of commercial cinema.�� Dealing with themes of unconditional love, miracles and belief, ��Dhanak�۪ is a positive and inspiring story, which has been projected fabulously on celluloid.

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