By Suhinth Mohan
The movie BEYOND THE CLOUDS marks Oscar-nominated and award-winning Iranian director Majid Majidi’s entry into Indian Cinemas. When the project was announced it created a great vibe across the fans who knew about Majid Majidi’s work in Iranian film industry as well as his collaboration with the Indian music maestro A.R. Rahman in his previous projects. The film also marks the debut of Ishaan Khattar (Amir) as well Malavika Mohanan (Tara).
The story revolves around estranged siblings played by Ishaan Khattar (Amir) and his divorced older sister Malavika Mohanan as Tara. Tara works for Akshi (Gautam Ghose) who lands in hospital as Tara hits him on head in a fit of rage. This leads to Tara’s imprisonment where her only solace is Akshi’s police statement. Akshi gets hospitalized and Amir (Tara’s brother) looks after him as he badly wants his sister to get released from the crime. Meanwhile, Akshi’s family visits him in Mumbai where they get attached to Amir, who let them stay in his house. Does Akshi give a statement on the incident? Does Tara come out of the prison? What happens to Akshi’s family who stays with Amir? Do the siblings come together? All these are answered in the movie.
This movie comes out as a relief from the usual commercial Indian cinema and we experience reality, love and an amazing message within a simple life story. This movie celebrates the lives around us, whoever we meet and whoever departs from us. Director of the movie has done justice to the screenplay in every aspect where even a faceless character impacts the storyline. I personally loved the conversation scenes between Amir and Tara in the prison. Unexpected turns and twists keep the movie alive. The running time (120 mins) of the movie is an advantage and above that it doesn’t have an interval which I see as a development for Indian Cinema. However, this film has the longest running time among Majid Majid’s films. Hats off to the director as well as the editor of the movie, Anil Metha for keeping it together.
The casting of the movie is so perfect even the newcomers show a matured performance throughout the film. The lead Ishan Kattar and Malavika Mohanan have all the potential to become the finest actors in the Indian cinema and it can happen only by choosing such impactful characters. The other supporting roles of the movie have done a great job with in their scope.
Music maestro A.R.Rahman’s contribution towards the movie is quite high even his name backed the movie to reach the audience in India. The soundtrack album became the bestseller on Amazon India. There are no dedicated songs in the movie as the songs move along with the story. However, the soundtracks can find place with in one’s playlist easily. Theme track, son of Mumbai and the twist of destiny are my favorites in the album.
This movie is one of the heartwarming movies of the year with a story about human-relationship and sibling bond. As this doesn’t include the regular masala touch of Indian cinema this can disappoint the regular cinema goers. I hope that director Majid Majidi continue to celebrate life the way he does and have more contributions in Indian industry in future. I go with a 3.5 Star and recommend it to those who enjoy offbeat cinema experiences.