Tamasha, A Film Review

An afternoon matinee is not expensive and I did not have a lot going on but the idea of sitting through an average movie was not appealing. A cursory glance at the lack lustre reviews of Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone’s latest movie, Tamasha, discouraged me from watching it.

The screen on my phone lit up with a whatsapp message from an old classmate.


“It’s different” is always a red rag to a movie-goer: a notch higher than “time waste” and yet lower than “paisa vasool”. “It’s different” eggs you on. So yes I went to see Tamasha with “okay-for-a-one-time-watch” ringing in my eyes. As the movie rolled on I sat clutching the empty popcorn holder by the side of my chair. No, I try not to eat popcorn, it is loaded with artificial butter. I have in the past snuck in bhelpoori and secretly munched on it, or a chocolate. Coming back to the movie, I was plesantly surprised by the way the subject was handled by Imtiaz Ali.

“Taare Zameen Par” and “Three Idiot’s” had found a sibling. The story of children under pressure, parents insensitive to the unique talents of each child, the engineer factory that India has become, medicore engineers or exceptional storytellers, etc etc. I am a storyteller and I might agree with the parent who is guiding their child towards a career that will keep body and soul together. Ask the New York Times best selling author, Dr. Verghese of the “Cutting for Stone” fame. He once told me, “Want to be a writer? Get a day job to pay your bills.”

The point really is did the storyteller of Tamasha tell a good story?

So yes. It is worth your ten dollar, or is it twelve now, ticket and an afternoon to see how the same tale can be spun in a different way. That is exactly the point the storyteller in the movie is trying to make after all.

Isha Purkayastha writes in her review in the Quint, “However, there is one way in which Tamasha attempts to distinguish itself.The film is a tribute to all the stories that shape our consciousness, and by extension, our cultures. The stories of Romeo and Juliet, the Trojan War, Majnu and Laila, the Ramayan – all of which are tributes to the power of eternal, steady-as-we-go love.

Through the enigmatic storyteller in the opening scenes of the film, Imtiaz Ali tells us that these stories, irrespective of their origins are interchangeable, because at the end of the day, they are essentially the same.”

Tamasha is a canvas for the storyteller and he gives the story his own unique color splash.

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