If you've seen 3 Idiots, what did you think? Liked it? Loved it? Didn't like it? What's the verdict? (If you've written about it, please share the link in a comment below.) If you have yet to see it and are willing to give it a chance -- and of course, I highly recommend you do -- there are several related discussion topics at my 3i umbrella post, including the songbook with translations to each song from the soundtrack.
This should do it for 2009. Wish you and your families the very best. Merry Christmas and happy holidays! See you all in 2010. God bless.
Life is a race. Compete or die.
These are among the messages students at the Imperial College of Engineering hear loud and clear. Perfection and its pursuit has only one path. Be the best. Be on top. If not, you’ll end up just like any other Idiot, and the finer things in life will always be beyond reach. But isn’t there another way? Must education only consist of rote memorization from textbooks?
Rancho (Ranchordas Shamaldas Chanchad, Aamir Khan) has the answers.
Branded an Idiot and a troublemaker by school Principal Viru Sahastrabudhhe (Boman Irani) -- or 'Virus', as referred to by the students -- Rancho challenges conventional educational paradigms with his innocent and optimistic view of the world. Chance encounters with such a pure soul had extraordinary impacts on the people he touched. Rancho’s spirit set them on a course that changed their lives forever.
Aamir’s performance as the free-spirited, pure-at-heart Rancho is absolutely wonderful. There was not a moment during the film when I was snapped back to reality and remembered that this is a 44 year-old! He was at the top of his game and I agree with Director Rajkumar Hirani when he says Aamir *is* Rancho.
Sab theek thaak, Aamir. I hope your fear about playing a man half your age has been put to rest.
I feel this trailer captures the essence of the film:
The entire cast was outstanding. Both R. Madhavan and Sharman Joshi were fabulous as the other Idiots. Although the story remained focused on Rancho, I don’t feel that Farhan (Maddy) and Raju (Sharman) were at all playing second fiddle. I was especially impressed with Sharman Joshi’s acting skills during some of the more sensitive and emotional scenes in the film. However, I wished the transitions between the manic, happy “AAL IZZ WELL” moments and the emotional, dark parts of the film were done with a little more care. The potency of those scenes was partially lost due to the lack of fluidity.
Pia (Kareena Kapoor), a strong, intelligent and likable medical student, was right on par with the boys, and I felt that there was wonderful chemistry with Aamir. I particularly liked the scene where she was comparing the names of Gujarati foods to missiles. This was but one of the very good laughs to be had.
And how can we forget Chatur (Omi). More than once I wanted to jump out of my seat and wring his neck! He played the irritating, know-it-all, over-achiever that everyone loves to hate, and did it with style. His chamatkar/balatkar speech was hilarious, and despite the obvious play on words in Hindi, the humor was not lost in the translation.
3 Idiots kept us smiling throughout the film. The roaring laughter and spontaneous applause was a sure indication that the audience felt as though they were truly part of the fun happening on-screen, or perhaps simply having a nostalgic flashback to their own college days. It’s as if we were all transported to the ICE campus and were also standing there in our underwear. Was it over the top at times? Absolutely. But what part of college life isn’t over the top? Drinking, fart jokes, cramming for exams…all part of the experience. It was very easy to be lost in the moment.
That said, the first half did border on being a little preachy. I wonder if the issues being addressed could have been conveyed in a slightly more subtle way. Since 3 Idiots has been openly compared to Taare Zameen Par (2007), I would say that the latter did a slightly better job of highlighting the issue without going too far in an attempt to make a point. Raju Hirani and the writing team still get a thumbs up for an honest attempt to not only highlight some of the issues and pressures that today’s students are facing, but offered tangible solutions as well.
The soundtrack is a great fit, and one gains appreciation for the songs when paired with the visual references. One of the most striking moments for me was the scenery in Behti Hawa Sa Tha Woh. I could almost feel the cold crisp air and the sun on my face. Breathtaking. I’m so glad that there was a second effort made to return to the location (Ladakh) after the first attempt was met with horrible weather and near disaster.
I feel privileged to have tagged along with the 3 Idiots on their journey of self-discovery. It’s mentioned in the synopsis that the film addresses the concept of self-actualization. Whether the characters were able to attain that level of functioning may remain unanswered, but the lasting message of the film is this: Don’t let other’s define who you are. Be the best “You” you can become. All else will flow from that.
Film rating: 4.5 (out of 5)
Classification: PG (Some scenes may be disturbing for young children.)
Parental Advisory: SPOILERS (Contains on-screen depictions of attempted suicide, and a semi-graphic and intense childbirth scene.)
I've been following 3 Idiots for about a year and a half now, and it's been obvious throughout that the cast and crew never hesitated to sell 3 Idiots on Brand Aamir, both within and outside the scope of the film. Of course, that's a good thing, too, because one doesn't need to see a film to know the actor would have given it his all (which is pretty good). From the initial reactions to 3 Idiots, it sure seems Aamir's incredible run continues to defy the odds...but that is what Idiots (with a capital 'i') do, I suppose. =)
Official website (and picture source):
Video: 3 Khans and 3 Idiots premiere
Links to other bloggers' reviews:
Review by Darshit at Dunkdaft.
Review by Sujoy at One Knight Stands.
Review by Govind at Samey's Reviews.
Review by Kanan at Gone Crazy Back Soon.
Review by Priya at WWW.