Movie Review: Sarbjit


Director: Omung Kumar

Cast: Randeep Hooda, Darshan Kumar, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Richa Chaddha

Rating: 2/5

Directed by Omung Kumar, Sarbjit is based on the real-life account of the unfortunate Sarabjit Singh. Singh was arrested by Pakistani border guards in 1990, accused of being an Indian spy who had been involved in bomb blasts in Lahore and Faisalabad, and thrown into prison. His sister, Dilraj Kaur, proclaimed his innocence and campaigned tirelessly for his release. But Singh languished on death row until he was killed in an attack by prison inmates in 2013.

Applause is due for Aishwarya Rai Bachchan who plays the struggling Dalbir. But, in the same breath, the 42-year-old actor doesn’t manage to bring alive the character. Her lip-twisting, chest-thumping and shouting does not help either. 

Randeep as Sarabjit evokes pity and sympathy. He is sweet as the brother and brings a smile on our face when he is with his family. The movie would have been much better, had director Oomung Kumar given Randeep a little more space. The few sequences where we do see him make us teary-eyed, but the movie quickly moves on.

Richa Chaddha, yet another talented actor wasted in this star-driven plot, leaves her mark as the silent wife who painfully waits for her husband.

Omung Kumar succeeds in creating an ensemble of dramatic scenes. The scene where Sarabjit's family comes to meet him in the Pakistani prison is filled with emotion. Or even the one where his wife (Richa) is going through his belongings after his death. But sadly, a handful of scenes can't make a film work.