Direction: Gajendra Ahire
Production: Trupti Bhoir
Cast: Nitin Chandrakant Desai, Trupti Bhoir, Kedar Shinde, Ravindra Mankani, Vinay Apte, Murli Sharma
Rating: * *
Plot: Durga (Trupti Bhoir) is married to Shivaji Pawar (Nitin Chandrakant Desai), a police constable who worships his profession. Mighty proud of being a part of Maharashtra Police, Pawar is always ready to lay down his life while on duty. He gets a chance to show his courage when 26/11 happens in 2008 only to become physically handicapped while battling the terrorists.
Looking from the point of view of the victims, the 26/11 Mumbai attack was much more disastrous than it appeared. Ganjendra Ahire’s Hello Jai Hind! tries to portray the effect of the horrifying incident on one such victim. Although the end result is rich in terms of performances, the weak script becomes the reason for its downfall.
Having said that, the makers should be appreciated for depicting the life of a victim and throwing light on the shameful fact that terrorist Ajmal Kasab is still not punished for the heinous crime.
After the initial few minutes, the film goes on to the flashback mode which shifts the focus from the main issue. Later on, although it was important to show the difficult and realistic life of the cops, the proceedings keep dragging on without coming to the main point. Two lengthy songs (‘Ganpati Bappa Morya’ and one during the couple’s marriage) don’t help either.
Finally, there comes the crucial moment at the interval point which raises your expectations for an interesting second half. However, the post-interval portions focus too much on the tragedy and helplessness of the protagonist with the story hardly moving forward. In addition, two more songs ‘Laut Ke Aane De’ and ‘Ganjalela’ add to the drag.
The terrorist’s conversation with Pawar is too fictional and just goes overboard. Perhaps, it was used as a justification for Pawar’s act in the penultimate moment. Lastly, the climax doesn’t provide a punch either.
Well-known music composer Ilayaraja’s Marathi film debut deserves appreciation. The background score and Amalendu Chaudhary’s cinematography are worth mentioning and so are the dialogues.
Performances are the biggest plus points. Art-director-turned-filmmaker Nitin Chandrakant Desai makes his acting debut in a central role and does exceedingly well especially while showing physical disability. Barring few moments, he overall gives a laudable act. Trupti Bhoir in the role of a housewife is terrific. She perfectly fits into her character and gets to deliver some praiseworthy lines.
Rest of the cast Vinay Apte, Kedar Shinde, Ravindra Mankani, Murli Sharma and the actress who plays Durga’s sister chip in with good performances too.
Overall, Hello Jai Hind! succeeds in paying tribute to the 26/11 victims but is let down by the writing department. Adding the fact that the movie hasn’t taken a positive opening, it will have a tough time at the box-office.