Irrfan Khan‘s much awaited movie, ‘Angrezi Medium’ / ‘English Medium’ got released on Friday, March 13, 2020. Ever since its trailer was released, I so wanted to watch the movie. Like so many people out there, I admire Irrfan not only as a fine actor, but one of the finest human beings. My kids and I have watched his earlier movie, ‘Piku’ so many times. So, I really wanted to watch this movie in the theater; didn’t want to wait until it got released in one of the Web platforms like Amazon Prime or Netflix. Earlier also I would think so; but by the time I got to it, the movie would be out of all the multiplexes!
I didn’t want the same to happen with ‘Angrezi Medium’. I did something I had never done before; I booked myself a ticket on BookMyShow for the very first show on the day of its release, March 13, 2020. The multiplex is very close to my place. The show started at 10:15 a.m. and I was late by five minutes; the movie had just started. The whole movie was indeed a very touching (and amusing at the same time) roller-coaster of human emotions so nicely intertwined in a humorous manner. Each and every actor’s role in the movie is well etched and each blends so beautifully into the narrative.
BTW, I am not a film critic reviewing this movie. I am just sharing my thoughts about the movie. The main points that the movie deals with are:
- Parents and the extended Support System helping Kids Achieve their Dream
- The movie highlights how parents are willing to to any length to fulfil their kids’ dream. Mr. Champak (the Dad played by Irrfan) and his extended family members and well meaning friends put themselves through some challenging situations to help Tarika (Champak’s Daughter played by Radhika Madan).
- One’s Ego hurting others prospects that they genuinely deserve
- It also shows how human ego hurts relationships. When someone points out our shortcomings / wrongdoings OR just gives feedback, it is quite rare that we take the time just take the feedback in, analyze and act in a calm manner. If there’s some truth to what the other person is saying, accept it and correct yourself; if not, just ignore it as it reflects the thinking pattern of the person criticising you.
- In the movie, someone’s ego getting hurt unknowingly costs Tarika the opportunity to study abroad that she had earned through hard work.
- ‘Empty Nest’ Syndrome
- All parents experience this loneliness / sad feeling when their kids leave the house either for pursuing higher studies or career or just exercising their will to live independently.
- In the movie, the Dad’s character Champak too goes through this emotion, but he gets out of it very quickly keeping his daughter’s dream in mind. Granted he tries to be around his daughter when she goes abroad, being apprehensive about her well-being and peer group. But, he doesn’t go overboard with his emotions; he experiences those feelings, which are quite natural for parents (that too he being a single parent in the movie) but when he is asked to back off by his daughter, he takes it in his stride and does what is needed by his daughter still doing his duty as a devoted parent.
- Enablement vs Empowerment
- Understanding the difference between enabling and helping is crucial to ensure that you aren’t hurting the people you care about by your action.
- Angrezi Medium highlights this aspect by some situations wherein the characters in the movie help others only when they are in dire need; the people who were in of assistance don’t take their helpers for granted either.
- Fascination about Studying / Living Abroad
- While there isn’t anything wrong in studying / working abroad to expand one’s breadth of knowledge and understanding of other cultures, having wrong notion that studying / living abroad is a status symbol or one will earn more respect from other if they live abroad doesn’t serve any purpose in the long run. This is the case we, Indians notice in most of the people around us. We are forgetting the value system our country has given us and so many things that are very unique to India. For example, take our ancient Science of Yoga or Spirituality; we needed western countries to endorse Yoga to start valuing it and adopt it in our daily life. First English translation of the most revered scripture Srimad BhagavadGita was also done by a foreigner. “Let noble thoughts come to me from all Directions” (a verse from Rig Veda) has reminded as a line to say to impress others.
- This movie touches upon this point through two characters, one being Tarika wanting to study abroad no matter what and another character Bablu (Champak’s friend played by Ranvir Shorey) trying to meet ends in London, but reluctant to move back thinking others will think less of him! It is refreshing to see these characters get out this herd mentality of blindly going abroad.
- Mindset of Young-Adults
- This young-adult phase is quite an interesting one. These wanna-be-grown-up kids think they know everything, want to be independent, still trying to figure out what they really are and what they want from life.
- In the movie, Tarika sets her mind on studying abroad, puts her heart and soul to her studies to achieve it by her own merit, she even prepares herself to be cool by experimenting with alcohol while still living in her hometown in India, and she changes herself (mostly the physical aspects) so rapidly just to fit in to the culture in the UK. Underneath, the value system that she grew up with remains intact and she cares about her family’s name and reputation that helps her in deciding what’s right for her.
So, for me, Angrezi Medium is a winner in all aspects, be it Direction / Script / Acting / Cinematography / Music.
The only thing that bothers me (like most of the people who either know Irrfan Khan personally or just know him as a fine actor and human being) is the health challenge that Irrfan Khan is currently fighting with in his real life. We are sure the positivity with which he is handling his health issue will see him through and he will get cured. Let us all send positive thoughts and prayers his way and wish to see him back in India happy and healthy doing great things that he is so capable of.