What: An anti-war, slice of life, coming age of humanity
Chintu Ka Birthday synopsis
Its Circa 2004 in Baghdad. Chintu Tiwary (Vedant Raj Chibber) gets ready for school. Mother dear Sudha Tiwary (Tillotama Shome) is combing his hair and the cute Chintu is ready. Today is a special day. Its Chintu’s sixth birthday and papa dear Madan (Vinay Pathak) is excited as well. Arrangements are getting in place. Toffees (2 for each classmate) are ready. Cake has been ordered, 25 guests are expected as last year Chintu couldn’t celebrate. The family especially papa is keen that this time Chintu cuts his birthday cake. But alas, the then president of America George W Bush and the situation in Iraq has something else to say on this day.
Chintu Ka Birthday movie review
‘Life is Beautiful’ in the war prone Baghdad?!!. Chintu Ka Birthday is a celebration of life and reconfirmation of humanity.
It’s almost impossible to maintain an incredible balance between fear and hope both overlapping, racing with each other to make point and ultimately allowing the determination to survive, the zest of life and the undying spirit of hope winning against all odds displaying a beautiful heart shinning like gold. Writer director duo Devanshu Kumar and Satyanshu Singh achieve this remarkable feat on celluloid trapping all the minutes of human emotions in the simplest manner and making the audience realise the importance of life and the power of goodness, hope and determination.
The innocence of childhood – Chintu, the optimistic determination of his father Madan - a ‘good hearted salesman’, who sells water purifiers in the war prone Iraq with the tagline ‘cheap and best’. Those tiny moments between Chintu and his elder sister Lakshmi (Bisha Chaturvedi). The ‘real’ bonding between Chintu’s Nani (Seema Pahwa) and her mother Tillotama Shome is straight out from a common Indian middle-class household.
Devanshu Kumar and Satyanshu Singh touch so many issues in this one hour twenty-minute gem. Life, death, want, greed, pain, suffering, war, peace, identity, duty, insurgency, nationality, immigrants, friendship, brotherhood, loss, gain, betrayal, hope, guilt, redemption and more.
The writing and narration is not at all preachy, its easy and completely relatable like things are happening in front of your eyes. The audience is transported immediately right from the first frame.
Vinay Pathkak as Madan adds his simple and lasting mannerism to his character making him a take home delight, an inspiration.
Tillotama Shome is a picture of effortlessness and natural acting.
Seema Pahwa is pitched perfect and purely brilliant.
Bisha Chaturvedi as the elder sister is charming and adds great value.
Khalid Massou as Madhi is fantastic. Reginald L Barnes and Nathan Scholz as the soldiers create the desired tension.
Mehroos Ahmed Mir is a delight
Vedant Chibber as Chintu is cuteness redefined. An absolute delight any father can go miles to bring a smile to such a cute child.
Flaws in Chintu Ka Birthday
Mostly indoors with hardly any outdoors and it’s partly English.
Scene that should have been deleted at once
The DVD scene
Reported to have taken ten years in its making, still the release is perfectly timed. It means how important is hope and humanity nowadays. Do watch this the viewer’s choice award winner at the Jagran Film Festival in 2019.