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Begum Jaan: Movie Review>>  The truth of partition is stained with blood and brutality.  One that burnt homes, took lives and livelihoods, prompted communal violence and triggered a mass evacuation between India and Pakistan.

It was a time of uncertainty, suspicion, ill will and strange chaos and there aren’t too many ways to reflect on it without getting sentimental.

What starts with Amitabh Bachchan’s voice-over informing us about the British lawyer Cyril Radcliffe and how his hastily drawn border, cutting through Bengal and Punjab, brought about the geographical split of a nation is to let us know that it forms a backdrop for Begum Jaan’s (Vidya Balan) sprawling brothel which interferes with topographical technicality; it falls right over the Radcliffe line.

There are two Begum Jaan performances out of which one is the Begum who wonders about the changing realities around her, and who can feel the earth beneath her feet slipping by.  According to me, this is the one that Vidya Balan almost nails.

In its preoccupation with drama, Begum Jaan neglects to reveal its soul and due to this you feel nothing for the characters, their cause or fate, which if given a little more care could have been made real touching taking into consideration it’s theme.

To me it’s 2.5 max out of 5.

In Trivandrum, watch the movie at Ariesplex SL Cinemas, show time 7:15 pm.

CAST: Vidya Balan, Ila Arun, Gauahar Khan, Pitobash Tripathy, Pallavi Sharda, Chunky Pandey, Ashish Vidyarthi, Rajit Kapoor and Naseeruddin Shah

DIRECTION: Srijit Mukherji
DURATION: 2 hours 15 minutes

by Vinod Nair



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