IT’s ALL ABOUT MOTHERS AND DAUGHTERS
Secret Superstar Story: Insia Malik (Zaira) is a talented 15-year-old school girl from Baroda whose spirit is ripped because her mother is in a troubled and violent marriage. Of course she still dares to pursue her dream of becoming a singer and she also valiantly attempts to free her mother from her conservative, cold father.
Secret Superstar Review: When Aamir Khan backs a film, you expect quality. The actor who plays an obnoxious music director, Shakti Kumaarr, in this outing, doesn’t let you down on that count. Debutant director Advait Chandan, who schooled under Aamir gives you a simple heartfelt film (slightly `fairytalish’ at times) but one in which you run the entire gamut of emotions — joy, tears, excitement and ebullience.
Nothing is new here. Whether it is batting for the girl child or freeing a battered housewife from the shackles of a loveless marriage, the material at hand has been touched on earlier. But what makes ‘Secret Superstar’ stand out is the adventurous narrative that keeps you rooted and guessing. You can feel the frustration of the Malik household in which not just people, even emotions are trapped. When the protagonist breaks free, you find yourself simultaneously wiping your tears and doing a victory lap.
Aamir is the scene-stealer. His character — a cross between the brash American Idol judge Simon Cowell and your crass Bollywood music directors from the 80-90s — appears like a caricature at the start. But you invest in him eventually because of the nuances he brings. It is also commendable that he never really attempts to steal the limelight from young Zaira, who is an absolute delight to watch. Najma (Meher) as the submissive wife says so much without spelling it out. And others like — Chintan (Tirth Sharma) and child-actor Guddu (Kabir) are adorable.
Amit Trivedi’s music is pleasing but the score doesn’t have the winning quality needed for a film like this. The lyrics by Kausar Munir just about pass muster.
If you world revolves around your mother, you’re going to root for this film. Go for it girls.