Being an NRI, I quite strongly relate my feelings with this flick. For me, this is Indian cinema at its best. I do agree that there are couple of over-hyped sequences (like generating electricity) and a bit of drama, but again, considering it with the story-line, they don’t seem to bother too much. I did read many negative reviews about this film, especially on Indiafm and couldn’t understand how they could give over 4 star ratings for films like Karzzz(???!!!) and shot this one down.
Anyways, on a personal level, this film does portray the flavour and essence of Indian, which we NRI’s miss the most. People keep talking about the quality of life and money which abroad offers, but in the pursuit of these, one tends to miss the sweeter moments of life. The closeness of your family, festivals, neighbours, food, climate and the clear sense of belonging is what our HOME does offer and these cannot be replaced at any cost.
Coming back to Swades, it tells the story of an NRI project manager working with NASA, who is at a point in life where is has succeeded tremendously, career wise. But there is something empty in his life…even after all the success, he longs for belonging…of love, support and of someone whom he can call his own. In this pursuit, he comes back to India in search of his Nanny, who is like a mother to him, who took care of him as a child.
In this process, he comes home (to a small village where his Nanny currently is) and slowly realises what he is missing. He makes friends, who support him in his deeds, helps the village by addressing social and economic problems, falls in love and finally realises the true sense of belonging!
The role is enacted to perfection by Shahruk Khan. Also, the supporting cast is excellent and each one of them performs naturally, with a special mention to Gayatri Joshi. The music of the film is fantastic, no seconds thoughts of it. All the songs are masterpieces and no one other than A.R.Rahman could do full justice for this film.
Just listen to Yeh jo desh hai tera, it surely makes you feel nostalgic. Saawarya and Dekho Na are excellent love ballads, whereas Yuhi Chala and Yeh Tara provoke the sense of fun, enjoyment and unity! Aahista is one of the best lullabies ever composed and Pal pal hai bhari tells an episode from Ramayana in a convincing way.
The film came out in 2004 and even after years of its release, the movie and the music still holds the same charm which I felt when I saw it for the first time.
Excellent film..highly recommended!
Few Good Scenes:
- Meeting his nanny once again after soo many years
- The weather forecast episode
- Going to school and giving incorrect answers episode
- Mohan and Geeta's quarrel
- The picturisation of Yeh Jo Desh, Yeh Tara & Saawarya songs
- The return back to India episode
My Rating: 5/5
- Ravi Adloori