HOPE AUR HUM A slice of life film about the subtle yet tough act of letting go.
Critic’s Rating: 3/5
An ageing widower can’t let go of his antiquated photocopy machine, which occupies too much space and breaks down constantly, leading to friction in his family.Review
Letting go is tough, be it with people or with things. For Nagesh Shrivastav (Naseeruddin Shah), it is almost unthinkable when it is time to discard his faithful old photocopy machine that has served him well for decades. Mr Sonnichsen, as he calls the machine, is the only link to his glorious past as a copier for ministers and bureaucrats. His eldest son Neeraj (Aamir Bashir), who is forever chasing the elusive promotion at work, almost understands why, but for Neeraj’s wife, practicality supersedes nostalgia. The machine occupies space that their daughter could use as a study room. The only one who really understands Nagesh’s predicament is his youngest grandkid Anu (Kabir Sajid), a cricket-loving and commentary-spouting kid who is forever onto the next mischief. When Nagesh’s younger son Nitin (Naveen Kasturia) who works in Dubai, shows up with a state-of-the-art photocopier, Nagesh has to come to terms with retiring the machine, which has almost become a friend.
Several sub-stories run through ‘Hope Aur Hum’, almost all of which deal with themes of old versus new, letting destiny take its own course and even the more serious ones that deal with guilt and death. The entire segment where little Anu fights an inner battle about an act of his that could have serious repercussions is shown beautifully by the filmmaker and the young actor Kabir. Another place where the film scores well is the casting, which helps make it even more believable and the characters relatable. The dialogues, too, crack you up every now and then, which help because the film dabbles often with philosophical subjects. While the philosophising doesn’t get too heavy, towards the end one feels there could have been a better, more layered payoff rather than the simple one that is served. The film is more interesting in parts, while the whole feels a bit disjointed. A tighter script could have helped, but for now the little gags in the film work just fine.
Our overall critic’s rating is not an average of the sub scores below.
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