Updated: Sun, 13 Mar 2022 10:29 AM IST
New Delhi | Mukul Sharma: The storytelling of sensitive subjects demands more sense than sensitivity. In 'The Kashmir Files', director Vivek Agnihotri seems to have an abundant directorial sense to make it an impactful watch but the sensibility to make it crafty enough to be remembered for times to come is missing. On the grand landscape of Hindi Cinema, the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits deserves far more sturdier treatment than Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s ‘Shikara’. With a unique storyline that blends-in with contemporary intellectual set-ups in the capital and beyond, Agnihotri had the opportunity to make it work. But it doesn’t.
The film isn’t exactly a Schindler’s List emulation. It is bold enough to go beyond the usual and draw parallels with the Holocaust of Jews by Nazis during second world war. Like I wrote above, it makes sense but lacks sensibility. The film isn’t exactly disappointing. It is watchable enough for its attempt to go out of the box. Despite the potential the storyline had, there are far too few goose-bump inducing moments in the film, credit the lack of diversity in expressions at the moments of tragedy, sadness and enticement.
Actor Darshan Kumar's transition as JNU student Krishna Pandit appears organic, believable and noteworthy. Radika Menon as liberal professor fails to induce a sense of audience gratification. The film’s casting could’ve been worked out for better.
The front at which the film stands out is the research that has gone into making of the film. Whether it’s about the significance of Lord Shiva in the Kashmiri Pandit community or the well-documented tragedies that the community suffered in the 1990s. It is neither dramatised enough nor is it put out in the documentary-style storytelling (like Shoojit Sircar’s October) and that’s exactly where the enticement part of the story goes down.
The Kashmir Files is a film which engages you towards an experience that just touches that emotive nerve and puts you back to normal. The sensible subject such as this deserved as much sensibility as much it made sense.
The Kashmir Files is running in theatres.
(Disclaimer: The above review has been done by Mukul Sharma, Consultant, English Jagran. The views expressed are of the author and English Jagran does not take responsibility of the views expressed here.)