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TV Review: Farzi


Sunny is an artist and Firoz, is a printer. Both of them work in a printing press that is run by Sunny’s grandfather. When the printing business hit a crisis and runs out of solutions, Sunny decides to generate money by making counterfeit money.


Released on Amazon Prime Video, Farzi is an Indian black-comedy action series starring Shahid Kapoor. During its eight-episode run, we come to know that the show is set in the same universe as Manoj Bajpayee-starrer ‘The Family Man‘. Directed by the filmmaking duo Raj & DK, Farzi was first planned to be a film years ago but then they decided to make a series.


Looking at its story and the continuity, Farzi is a kind of project that is flexible to be shaped into a film as well as a tv series. The plus point for deciding to stretch Farzi is that the audience got the whole exposure of printing currency and running a business out of it. Officer Michael’s life was focused as well as Megha’s.

But when you stretch the details, the screenplay of the tv series notions development in the central story. I feel this is the area where Farzi is weak because Farzi easily could have been a four-episode show. The writing’s commitment to action and comedy drops the quality in the second half of the season.

I like the plot, it is fresh for the audience with a Narcos-tic narration by Shahid Kapoor. Some minor points raised were sharp like the minister and other attendees not listening to the presentation, Megha and her mother’s typical calls, Michael speaking with his wife and family in Tamil and English, etc. I wanted Michael’s scenes with his family completely without Hindi but it is okay.

Presenting the show in a non-linear way was also a good idea. The dialogues were natural but on several counts, I felt the dialogues went cheesy.

Farzi has plenty of errors in writing. Officer Michael’s disrespectful conduct in conversation with the minister was quite surprising. Just because you have his private pictures, doesn’t mean that you can try to annoy a minister that often and he will tolerate that much.

I have never understood the Bollywood logic. Why the friend of the leading character is always silly and ultra-loyalist to him? Why cannot the directors level the personalities of two or more friends? When the press is demanded to open, uncle Yasir goes cold as the dead body. How come the police and Megha do not suspect Yasir of lying or hiding something from them?

The action sequence in the season finale was quite stretched and boring. The cops repeatedly running towards the front and back was so stupid.

The worst character of the show is Mansoor Dalal played by such a quality actor like Kay Kay Menon. A very stereotypical villain who thinks he is funny but merciless. There was no originality in his antagonism. It was like just another clone of a psycho pretending to be a psycho.


What propels me to watch ‘Farzi’ is the continuity of the story that is set toward the next season and Shahid Kapoor’s performance. With age, his mental strength in acting has gone better, and improved his skill in depicting anger and frustration.

I am not sure if Vijay Sethupati has worked on a Hindi project before but it was absolute fun to listen to him uttering thick curse words in his Tamilian Hindi. I am happy to see Amol Palekar but it looks visible that his acting has faded. What took him so long to return to acting?

Those who are willing to try a black-comedy action series with an interesting plot can try this.



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Film Review: Sardar Udham (2021)

The name Sardar Udham is significant for all reasons that shaped the movement for independence from the British Raj. A tragic event that ignited millions of Indians and encouraged them to oppose British Imperialism. Shoojit Sircar‘s latest is a tribute to the national hero who stood for his people and avenged by assassinating Michael O’Dwyer in London, the man who appointed Reginald Dyer to supervise the ever-haunting Jallianwala Massacre.

I refuse to believe that this is an Indian film. I do not claim that Indian or Hindi-language films are that bad but the production of films like this still does not exist. The technical aspects of this film are extremely rich and carefully detailed. Excellent direction and stunning cinematography on many occasions.

Direction and camera work play a vital role if the screenwriting is to be justified, and this film is an example of an absolute masterpiece. Being lengthy is a problem that I will reason later but some portions need time investment and that demand is accomplished in the film. You may say that the time spent on Udham eating at her cousin’s place, his quest for O’Dwyer’s whereabouts, or speaking about freedom alone in the park were needless but I think Shoojit gave such minutes to build a thought about his character that meant a lot on all these occasions.

Vicky Kaushal‘s leading role will neither be criticized nor be pointed for objection because this, for me, will be remembered as one of the best performances in Hindi cinema for this new decade. You feel pain when his portrayal agonizes. There is much discomfort to watch his rage and hatred for British Imperialism and he has perfected that genuity you want to watch in the films about Indian freedom against the British. His tense courtroom scene of justification and in a lengthy struggle of saving many lives after the massacre are the best examples of Vicky’s notable performance.

Another factor that tops Sardar Udham is toning down the stereotypical elements of jingoism and giving rich feelings of sacrifices and excruciating pains of the British cruelty. No larger-than-life action sequences, no cosmetic dialogues. British portrayal and periodic productional set-up are so apt. The chosen actors for the British portrayal have done a fine job. Also, a superb background score by Shantanu Moitra made the mood to the audience.

Being a supporter of global diversity, I have a cordial affection for the name he used during his time in jail, Ram Mohammad Singh Azad. This name has been valued in the film that indicates the unification of the nation for freedom.

I have confusion about historical accuracy because the life of the freedom fighters was either a mystery or detailed with exaggeration. In some places, the readers won’t find strong pieces of evidence or authentic lead in their lives. Take the case of the Jallianwala Massacre; the film shows Udham to arrive late at the scene whereas one book ‘The Trial of Udham Singh’ claims that he was present during the firing. Whereas in other internet sources, there is no agreement on what official stats are about the casualties and survivors from that incident.

Also, there is no evidence of his love interest as shown in the film portrayed by Banita Sandhu. Was it necessary? Of course not. His involvement with Ghadar Party is also missing.

Minus? I’ll say the length of the film. It may be slow-burn to some extent but I am okay with the way the story moved with Udham’s character. The flow was acceptable. But I think the aftermath of the massacre was way too long. I understand the significance of the horror that still haunts millions of Sikhs worldwide but picturizing Udham and other fellows taking the severely injured victims from one place to the other for 20 minutes is overstretched. I actually thought maybe Shoojit stretched that scene so that Udham may eventually locate the body of his love interest but even that was not the case. The obvious ending could have been better.

I must mention the portrayal of the Jallianwala Massacre that was kept on wait after two hours well spent on developing the story and Udham’s character in entirety. Praising a massacre scene would make me foolish or call it great. So choosing my words carefully, I should write this way that the intensity and provocation of that bloodshed were extremely detailed. This scene was deliberately shot violent. The graphic detailing of this three-minute scene full of gunshots and painful cries was more savage than what Lord Attenborough showed in Gandhi. It was a scene that boiled the emotions and broke the hearts. Udham’s commentary about his fury for this incident all this time made his case.

Sardar Udham is an accomplishment in the Indian cinema that distinguishes the filmmaking of freedom-themed nationalist films from most of the others. Sardar Udham may not need to check the historical accuracy whether Udham was there or not. Maybe it is the directional artistry or some kind of representational theory that has been applied to demand an apology from the British government that India is yet to officially receive even after 100 years.

Sardar Udham is the ‘other’ side of a freedom fighter story that hardly any director wishes to direct. This film is about the crime for which the innocents had to pay that was demanding to the British to leave their country once and for all. Sardar Udham is not a film but a reminder to the present generation about what and how their great-great-grandparents suffered in the name of imperialism. Thank you, Shoojit Sircar.

Ratings: 9.2/10