Producer: Children’s Film Society India
Director: Rajan Khosa
Cast: Mohammad Samad, Naresh Sharma, Jayanta Das, Sarvasva, Zoya
Music: Sandesh Shandilya
Cinematography: Satya Rai Nagpaul
Gattu takes you on an emotional rollercoaster ride from the very first frame till the end credits roll. Sometimes, you’re in love with the film, whereas the very next moment you’re detached, thanks to the inconsistency of the proceedings. The film, which has won much acclaim in the international film market, is the humble tale of a young boy with a passion for flying kites.
Gattu (Mohammad Samad) lives in the small town of Roorkee with his uncle Anees bhai (Naresh Sharma), and works in a scrapyard. Anees had adopted Gattu years ago from his sick father. The skyline of the town is dominated by a kite called Kali. No one knows who the flier is. All the children dream of defeating Kali and Gattu is the most determined of them all.
After umpteen failed attempts, Gattu has a brainwave – to fly his kite from the highest rooftop in the town. He discovers a local school whose roof offers a strategic advantage. Impersonating as a student, Gattu sneaks into the school and pretends to study. He manages to assume command of a small but determined group of students. He makes up a series of excuses so that he can slip away and indulge his passion for kite-flying.
Although the film is a fun ride and paints a broad smile on your face, there are two scenes that are especially emotional – the pre climax kite-flying sequence and the one where the principal acknowledges Gattu, towards the end of the film. Full marks to director Rajan Khosa for not portraying Gattu as a frustrated, cranky kid. This child, despite the odds, is positive and if not book-smart, sure is street-smart.
Apart from perfect casting, the filmmakers also deserve kudos for the simplicity with which the film has been made. Cinematographer Satya Rai Nagpaul has fabulously captured the film and the kite-flying sequences. The effects used to capture the kites fluttering in the sky are beautiful. Editing is good. Music and background score are apt.
Performance-wise, Mohd. Samad is cute and delivers an award-winning performance. He is the soul of the film. His expressive eyes create a unique substance to his character. The other kids, too, deliver poised performances. Naresh Sharma plays his part very well. Jayanta Das is good. The rest of the cast fits the bill.
Verdict: Go for it!