From the time the movie has been announced, more people have come to know about the story of an acid survivor, Laxmi Agarwal. The story itself is quite overwhelming, and so watching the movie won’t be an easy ride. Directed by Meghna Gulzar, the movie Chhapaak starring Deepika Padukone and Vikrant Massey is all set to take its viewers on an emotional roller coaster.
Almost everyone knows the plot of the film, but very few of us could understand the significance of the title. Coming from the legendary poet Gulzar, there couldn’t be a poetic name better than this. So let’s get into the Chhapaak movie review to understand it better. The film is releasing on 10th January all across the country.
Chhapaak Movie Review- Plot Analysis
The plot of Chhapaak is about a 19-year old girl and how her life takes a U-turn when a horrific acid attack takes place with her. The story is about her fight for justice and how she tries to get back her life.
The films start with Malti, who is on a hunt for a job, moving from one place to the other, and consciously try to move on from the emotional scars that will stay with her for life. A girl who is in her teens, aspiring to become a singer is attacked by Babbu aka Bashir Khan, a friend of her family. In broad daylight, he throws acid on her face, on the streets of Delhi because she refuses to be with him. The Chhapaak of acid on her face changes the course of her life, from attending auditions to working with NGOs, attending various surgeries and court cases.
The protagonist goes through multiple corrective surgeries for the physical scars, but what about the emotional scars? I know most of you would be stuck on this thought, however, Malti doesn’t let this ruin her life. She is powerful and determined to fight with a resolute smile on her face, and at the same time pain in her eyes. But nothing can steer her indomitable spirit.
There are two flashbacks in the film, one which depicts the terrifying crime and the other tells the interaction of Malti with a much older Bashir, the attacker.
The film also witnesses a sweet relationship that brews between Anmol and Malti- specifically called as silent Pyaar by the latter. However, the sweet and profound emotion between the two is sensitively and subtly disrupted by the tremulous moments of the attack. To sum it up, it is a commendable effort by the entire team.
Chhapaak Movie 2020- Cast, Performance Review
We all have seen Deepika Padukone in roles all dressed up and playing the strong characters. And here is one more, where you won’t be able to see her facial beauty, but how beautifully she has portrayed the role of another beautiful and strong woman in real life. Yes, she is the soul of the film and once again she is delivering a role with utmost brilliance.
There are various scenes where she will move you to tears. A short part of such scenes was there in the Chhapaak trailer as well. And at no point in the film, her character succumbs to self-pity, she rather gives shrills to the audience with her anti-patriarchy stance.
Vikrant Massey on the other hand who plays the role of an impatient, ornery NGO-type journalist cum activist has also given a commendable performance. He has done a spectacular job as Anmol which is very pleasing in some bits. The chemistry between Massey and Deepika is cute and relaxes the minds of the audience amongst the terrifying hospital and courtroom scenes.
The supporting character like a wealthy woman, by the name Shiraz Aunty, is wonderful. Madhurjeet Sarghi plays the role of her ever-supporting and doughty lawyer.
Chhapaak Review- Direction and Screenplay
Meghna Gulzar, as a director has recreated this inspiring story with Malti as the protagonist. She has brought the story of Laxmi for the audience with complete clarity. It is very close to the real story, and with brutal honesty. The film’s crisp narrative and simple dialogues do their job.
Meghna has previously directed films like Raazi and Talvar, has once again brought a topic that has to be dealt with maturity. She has done complete justice to the subject, as the story doesn’t get carried away. Instead of creating sympathy towards the not-so-pretty faces, she sends out the message of standing strong and celebrating life.
However, the constrained approach could be seen as Malti’s story is told leaving some loose ends.
From the name of the film to the storyline, Meghna Gulzar has shown why she is one of the dignified voices of the Industry. She has not amped the plot or added any melodramatic touches. Even though the screenplay seems to be a little weak, the film’s story, character, and performances do the talking.
Chhapaak Movie Review
The movie Chhapaak is based on the real-life story of Laxmi Agarwal, an activist, and an acid attack survivor. The movie is more in a documentary style, but the reality of the heinous crime just plays right with the emotions of the audience. In the entire film, the protagonist is depicted with a damaged face, and only in the climax scenes, we get to see how beautiful she actually was. But then also all one could visualize her is as a symbol of inspiration and strength.
The movie Chhapaak is built on a topic that is delicate and sensitive yet powerful. The director has handled this concept of heinous crime very well. While there could have been a lot of melodrama and high-pitched unconventional scenes, Meghna Gulzar tries to keep it as low key as possible, focusing more on the subject and dealing it with a delicate touch. You can actually feel all the characters, as they are too real to be true.
Faces of acid attack survivors are not pretty, but the makers have included a bunch of them. It not only brings out the excessive number of acid attack cases happening in the country but also depicts the strength of the girls as they fight their cases. It makes the entire scenario even more real.
Chhapaak Movie- Songs and Music
The title track “Chhapaak”, sung by Arijit Singh is apt nad definitely stays with you. It brings out the soul of the film. Another song “Nok Jhok”, penned by Gulzar fits perfect with the mood.
The background score and music add up to the severity of the situation, and to the film.
Gulzar and her team have gone too far with the saying “expect the unexpected” because when you start to feel happy, there is a sudden turmoil. It is definitely a must-watch, as it is a beautiful film that allows you to feel every moment of an acid attack and the life of its survivor.