|Movie Name:||Laal Singh Chaddha (2022)|
|Release Date:||11 August 2022|
|Language: ||Hindi, Tamil and Telugu|
|Genre:||Comedy, Drama, War |
|Cast:||Aamir Khan, Kareena Kapoor, Mona Singh, Naga Chaitanya Akkineni |
|Director:||Advait Chandan |
|Cinematography:||Satyajit Pande |
|Music:||Pritam Chakraborty |
|Producer:||Aamir Khan, Kiran Rao, Ajit Andhare, Radhika Chaudhari |
|Production:||Aamir Khan Productions, Viacom18 Studios |
|Synopsis:||Laal Singh Chaddha is the official remake of Oscar-winning American drama titled Forrest Gump (1994) — which in itself was the adaptation of Winston Groom’s 1986 novel of the same title. |
The film narrates the important events of Indian history from the perspective of Laal Singh Chadha (Aamir Khan), an autistic man with a wide emotional spectrum.
Some of the notable historic events included in this silver screen representation include the Emergency, 1983 Cricket World Cup, Operation Blue Star, the Rath Yatra, and the 1999 Kargil War.
Laal Singh Chadha has been shot in more than a hundred locations across India, and reportedly features Shah Rukh Khan in a cameo appearance.
Laal Singh Chaddha POSTERS & PHOTOS
Laal Singh Chaddha Latest Reviews & Collections
Aamir Khan’s pet project, Laal Singh Chaddha, hits the theatres today, August 11. It is an official Hindi adaptation of Tom Hanks’ Forrest Gump. If you manage to remove that information from your mind, you might just like the film, says our review.
Aamir Khan’s last great performance, some say, was Dangal. For me, it was Ghajini. It is ironic, therefore, that the actor, like the protagonist of the Memento remake, has forgotten what ‘acting’ is. And utterly heartbreaking. The method actor who made method acting common parlance now resorts to grunts and more grunts in his reinterpretation of Forrest Gump, a role synonymous with Tom Hanks from the film of the same name. The official Hindi adaptation of this Hollywood classic, Laal Singh Chaddha, much like that iconic buoying white feather, common in both films, floats but each time it lands at Aamir’s shoes, is simply trampled upon.
Unlike Forrest, we meet Laal on a train, on his way to meet Rupa (Kareena Kapoor Khan, Robin Wright’s Jenny in the original). The camera pans up from his dirty shoes to his face and his twinkling eyes. A woman lugs her bag in and occupies the seat in front of him. Laal barely looks at her, and instead, digs into a box of golgappas he is carrying for Rupa. Paani alagse. And then he grunts. It is at that moment you know that the next almost three hours are going to be quite an effort.
For the most part, director Advait Chandan’s Laal Singh Chaddha remains faithful to the original material. From the feather up top to Laal’s ‘magic shoes’ as a child, jaadoo ke jute in this, to the metaphorical ‘running’ through the pages of history – a shoutout to writer Atul Kulkarni for that. I don’t mind the fact that the box of chocolates is now replaced by golgappas – in fact, I’ll say it adds quite the Indian tadka. Even though the change of philosophy here – from you never know what you might get to your heart will always want more – is itself an indication that we shall walk out wanting more.
But not all of Atul and Advait’s creative liberties land. Mona Singh as Laal’s mother, becomes a victim of a clumsy adaption. The zeal and confidence she instils in Forrest are defeated by the typical Maa funda in Laal Singh Chaddha – shielding her son from all the communal riots that ripped India apart in the 80s and 90s by teaching him ‘desh mein malaria faila hua hai’. The makers do tie it up later with one of the most pragmatic lines in the film – mazhab se malaria failta hai – but it came far too late, and we were bored.
Of all the Indianisation the plot goes through, Kareena’s Rupa, adapted from Robin Wright’s Jenny in the original, was perhaps the starkest. It was almost as if the makers knew Jenny, in her original form, wouldn’t win the audience’s sympathy. In order to make her more ‘likeable’, she was made ‘vegetarian’, so to speak. The madness of the 70s fueled by Flower Power we saw in Jenny is now reduced to an innocent woman being trapped in Dawood’s Bollywood of the 90s. Interwoven with a tryst with physical abuse she witnessed being meted out to her mother as a child, it is not a bad trope. And Kareena, with her effortless performance, emerges looking better than Aamir, who, by the way, is still grunting.
Yes, so, all is ruined by Aamir’s caricaturish acting. At what point during the making of Laal Singh Chaddha, one the actor himself admitted took him close to a decade and a half to make, did Aamir decide to reimagine Forrest’s developmental disability as a mental disability in Laal, defeats me. The best way to understand how horribly wrong Aamir went with his over-the-top acting is to look at Naga Chaitanya’s Bala, an Army recruit Laal befriends on the bus to the training camp. Aside from replacing the shrimping business with a chaddi-banyan ka business, Chay’s Bala is as OTT as Mykelti Williamson’s Bubba. He plays a Telugu man with a typical ‘South-Indian’ accent the rest of India has always stereotyped it with. Yet, Chay lives it, and how! His sincerity and surrender to the material and director’s vision show in every scene, which ensures his act doesn’t tip over and look like a mockery.
Gary Sinise’s Lieutenant Dan is entirely gobbled up and replaced with Manav Vij’s Mohammad, a terrorist Laal rescued in Kargil simply out of the goodness of his heart, oblivious to the fact that he was the ‘enemy’. Even as Mohammad follows Dan’s trajectory through the rest of the film – co-founding Bala’s chaddi-banyan ka business with Laal, and no points for guessing what they named the super-successful brand (ahem!) – the symbolism of establishing the enemy as the friend is far too stretched, and frankly implausible even in a suspended-disbelief state.
Perhaps if Aamir had surrounded himself with lesser actors, his performance would have looked better in comparison. Perhaps if the makers hadn’t really called it the official Hindi adaptation of Forrest Gump, and just another movie like Salman Khan’s Bharat – which, by the way, is very Forrest Gump-like – Laal Singh Chaddha would have appealed more. But, alas!
Laal is a boy from an affluent Sikh family living in Pathankot. And the fact that Laal Singh Chaddha’s timeline ends abruptly in 2018, right before the Balakot Air Strike, says a lot about how scared this Chaddha is of the ‘chaddis’.
The thing I liked most about Laal Singh Chaddha is Shah Rukh Khan. Go figure.
Laal Singh Chaddha Day by Day Collections and Predictions
|Day||India Net Collection|
|Day 1 [1st Thursday]||₹ 12 Cr [Hi: 11.9 Cr ; Te: 0.05 Cr; Ta: 0.05 Cr]|
|Day 2 [1st Friday]||₹ 6.50 Cr * may earn|
|Day 3 [1st Saturday]||₹ 8 Cr * may earn (according to advance booking)|