Taare Zameen Par- A Treat to Childhood

I would not say I was badly waiting for the movie Taare Zameen Par, like I do for every Aamir Khan release. Probably I was too busy with work, but I took time out to do other less –important work. So when my cousin sent me an email asking to see TZP, he added this line: " If you haven't watched it yet... pls apologize to aamir and curse urself for craving for a ticket to Om Shanti or Kabhi Alvida… and then go and watch Taare....It’s special..."

But isn’t every AK movie special? Is not every AK movie unique? So what is new in this movie? Probably I was just bored with the novelity of every AK movie and so did not grab this one on the day of its release.

But I could not ignore it longer. Yesterday I hit the theatre for the movie. The name had a parenthesis… Every child is special. Well, this was not thought provoking for me. After studying 6 years for degrees which partly related with childhood speech and language disorders, I grew up with the idea...“Disabled are differently able”.

So how this movie is different from other AK movies? Probably the answer is in the promos. With the picture of Ishaan in front you almost miss Aamir at the back. Aamir, who also directed the movie, only entered the scene a little before interval, and Bingo, all this time, I never realized his absence. Ishaan (cast by Darsheel) almost binds the viewers with his dreams, his interests, hobbies, his clever mischief, energetic impishness, strengths and weakness. There are moments in the film when probably all of us will identify ourselves with Ishaan. “If you don’t behave, you will be sent to boarding school” and “I am leaving home for you, I will not come back”… these are the threatening parents have used against their children for time immemorial.

It is beyond my ability to comment about the technical side of the story, or how good Aamir proved himself as a Director. The moment’s which moved are Ishaan’s mom, cast by Tisca Chopra. Her attachment to her child and silent support.. The disbelief in Ishaan’s eyes when he was finally left behind in the boarding school. Ishaan’s silence when his parents told they are not coming to see him on Saturday. Prasun Joshi’s lyrics in the song Maa.

In fact, once the movie was over, I was thinking about Ishaan and Ishaan. It is like how it is called in Bollywood terms “taken the whole responsibility of the film on his shoulder”. Probably this is the brilliance of Aamir as a director. The camera never lingered on his face or eyes unnecessarily (as you would have seen had Nikum Sir been cast by any other Khan or Bachchan, or TZP was directed by Johar, Verma or Banshali).

Though there are few things which I did not agree as a fan of AK. Nikum Sir as a teacher for special children did not bother to send the child for an assessment. He did not clear the father’s idea that dyslexic does not relate with mental retardation, and only occur to children with average, above average and gifted intelligence. Dyslexia is not a neurological disorder. Well, I cannot surely ignore the brilliance of the film for this.

If you still have not seen the movie, just go and have a look.

Just to appreciate that beyond our perception of normality, there exist other normal worlds.

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