Movie: Secret Superstar
Director: Advait Chandan
Producers: Aamir Khan Productions, Zee Studios
Background scores: AR Rahman
Rating: 4/5 Stars
Much like Aamir Khan’s 3 idiots, Secret Superstar is also a film that uses the philosophy of following your dreams as its fuel, but the film, even if it was backed by Aamir Khan, still had a chance to go in any direction. But, director Advait Chandan has kept himself in control and crafted a beautiful story around it. In the process, he has also managed to address the evils of domestic violence and female infanticide in ways you probably would have never expected.
Zaira Wasim of Dangal fame plays Insia, an aspiring musician who takes to anonymity to pursue her dream of becoming a singing sensation due to the fear of her patriarchal father (Raj Arun) and has her mom (Meher Vij) at the center of her world. We knew that from the trailer already but signed up for the film anyway, which we didn’t regret in doing. The young lad has really delivered a heartfelt performance and you always stay with the protagonist, unlike many films this year where you simply begin to lose interest in the leads almost instantly. She plays a girl who is actually too mature for her age and her background. One might point that out as a little less possible, but it’s a film with the touch of gen-next. It’s the age of YouTube as a career, many followers on Twitter, likes, shares, comments and subscribing, and the makers have carefully kept that in mind. Zaira deserves a lot of appreciation for sure.
Aamir Khan, on the other hand, plays a character you would have rather never imagined him playing. He as Shakti Kumar quirky. He’s rude. He’s a womanizer. He’s quirky. At times, you want to hate him with all your heart but you cannot help but chuckle at his antics. In many dialogues, he, in fact, discusses his real-life story, but you really need to hear carefully to get what he’s saying. He smartly takes the back-seat as the supporting character and takes merely 30 minutes of screen-time and lets Zaira and the overall message of the film shine throughout.
In a broader sense of the film, although the Dangal star Zaira and Aamir Khan amongst many others deliver a spectacular performance, it’s ultimately the iron will of a mother that ultimately shines in the end. While the film enters in its last half an hour, you will be convinced that a mother can do anything for their child. And I mean ANYTHING!
As far as dexterity of the dialogues and the screenplay go, there’s nothing less of spectacular that you can expect out of a film that Aamir Khan backs, so there is no sense talking about it.
2017 has seen a lot of small-budget, content-driven films turn into unexpected success stories, because this year itself has shown the industry- If you have the right story and the right performers, there is negligible to zero need of adding any kind of glit and glam to the film, unless the theme of the film really requires it. Secret Superstar also bears testimony to that. It’s gripping. It’s emotional. It will make you laugh and then suddenly make you cry. What what’s more, at the end of it, it will make you want to give your mom a tight hug for all that she’s done for you.
We highly recommend that you make time for this film this coming Diwali weekend!