There was just one word when I walked out of the hall after watching Black: WOW!

This is exactly the feeling you’d like to be left with at the end of a movie and Sanjay Leela Bhansali does an absolutely fabulous job of ensuring that he achieves this objective. Not only does he extract great performances from all the cast members, he frames each scene with such care, perfection and finesse that you can’t help but be impressed.

Amitabh Bachchan: What can I say! The veteran comes up with such an amazing performance that I could only sit back with awe and wonder. He’s 60 + but his energy and versatility shines through in every scene. Towards the end, when he is struck with Alzeihmer’s, his portrayal of the character is so realistic, that it’s difficult to believe this is the same Amitabh who sang and danced Shava Shava!

Amitabh on his role: “Black is such a welcome relief. It has salvaged me as an actor. Everything from its exceptional background score by Monty to the cinematography by Ravi Chandran is beyond anything seen in our cinema.

Rani Mukherjee: A performance of a lifetime and her best yet. Even without words, she conveys her character’s emotions with such strength and passion that leaves you in tears. With body and sign language she convey what many can’t possibly convey even with words. A really amazing performance (she deserves a few awards for this one!). Watching her in popcorn and masala movies, I for one would have never guessed she’d be so good in a role such as this one.

Ayesha Kapur: Wow! She is 10 years old and gives a performance that matched the older veterans in every shot. To convey the feeling that one is trapped in a world without thoughts, words and dreams is no mean task. Ayesha slips into the role and delivers what I’d consider one of the best performances by such a young woman in Indian cinema recently. You have to applaud the fantastic job she does in portraying a young Rani, trapped in a dark and hellish world. Ayesha is from Auroville, Pondicherry and has no acting background.

Ayesha on her role: “Amitabh was very nice and kind. I read in the newspapers that Amitabh praised me a lot. I really liked that and I hope it is true. Amitabh was very patient with me whenever I forgot my lines or expressions. He would leave me alone so that I would learn them again and then get it right. Whenever my shot was not good, I would get upset and would want to do it again. I wanted to be perfect…”

Shernaz Patel: From the first scene, when she discovers her baby is deaf and blind – Patel is another great actor to watch out for. I’ve seen her on stage, but she excels in her role as Rani’s mother. Trying to deal with her daughter, fighting for her (when her husband wants to send her away) and hoping for her when Amitabh comes into their life.

This is one movie that I wouldn’t call a language movie – it’s not Hindi or English or any other – it’s an experience by itself.

The movie been elevated quite a few notches just by the presence of Amitabh and Rani who share a really good chemistry. Every single scene touches you. People actually clapped when the movie ended and that’s just how much it impacted the audience. The cinematography is beautiful with some of the scenes shot in Himachal Pradesh. Some of the scenes have apparently been recreated in Mumbai.

Absolutely, one of the best movies I have watched in a long, long time.

17 thoughts on “Black is beautiful!

  1. shilpa: definitely! you must. and please share your thoughts once you do 🙂

    chugs: looks like we were in the same hall. i saw the 7.30 show!

  2. Black is amazing. I do agree…said d same thing on my blog. It tries to show that physically handicapped ppl need something more than our sympathy, they need the status of a normal human being.

  3. After reading a couple of blogger reviews I couldnt help but watch it right away. Although the theater had just about 10-15 people (I went on a Monday evening at a local AMC theater in Chicago), the movie was simply superb. Amazing acting by all three (Rani, Amitabh and Ayesha) and I was totally awed at Shernaz’s role. She has a very pleasing personality that gave her role even more substance.

  4. I watched the movie last Sunday and I found it to be really good. But there were times when I felt that Rani could have subdued a bit in her portrayal of Michelle. Her walk could have been a little better as I felt she was doing a Charlie Chaplin especially when she was walking with the umbrella (her shoes added to that!). However, breaking away from the “regulars” (without a soundtrack) and with a brilliant background score, SLB sure did a great job! A double thumbs-up!

  5. I think Rani’s Chaplinesque walk was deliberate. The cinema hall, ‘Gaiety’, shown in the movie is always shown screening Chaplin movies… The Kid, Gold Rush…

  6. Now I gotta see this.. The blogworld is full or reviews of ‘Black’.. even by ppl who generally dont write reviews.. just another point confirming that it’s a movie that really connects with ppl..

  7. something more abt this movie Black : it is a re-make, frame-by-frame at least upto interval, of a classic hollywood oscar winner of 1962, title of which was The Miracle Worker. that movie depicted true story of helen keller. as a girl, she had that lady tutor annie, who also took care of her feminine needs and sensitivities. in this hindi remake, they changed the gender and showed a male tutor instead. added some more masala like her sister and marriage and alzheimer’s, etc that added to its running length. the original is a very very touching story and the film ran for abt 110 min. while living in the usa starting late sixties, i had personally seen the movie 2-3 times and while watching Black, the memories came back. the movie is made as a frame-by-frame copy. click on the following url to check it out.

    Black is well made but it cant take credit for originality and story line. it cant take dredit even for its effectiveness. happy viewing.

  8. Black is a great script with touching moments across the movie. Amitabh has been brillant and cinematic technical excellence has been wonderful. It could have been great by but no,its a turnoff and …leaves behind a dull feeling closest to a simmered down hard on

  9. I totally agree with Prasad. I have no bagful of praises for this movie. I have seen the original Hollywood movie and Black is a shoddy remake…unbelievable at times. Especially the way the teacher forcebly decided to stay and the way Rani Mukherji walked. Is she copying Charlie Chaplin or what….as if copying the movie wasn’t enough. I cannot believe the copycats in our film industry. This movie is just as bad as all other plagiarised hindi movies. When will they learn to be original? No wonder they never win Oscars or any other International awards.

  10. I finally saw Black directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali.
    I also saw the original ‘Miracle worker’ which came in 1960 ‘s.

    Till now i had lot of respect for his work. But now…?
    He should have at least tell the media and the ppl who praise him that it’s not the original script but he got the inspiration from some old movie.
    Did he ever tell that? I’m not up to date regarding bollywood movies…

    Why is he trying to take credit for something he doesn’t create.

  11. Even I had liked ‘Black’ when I had watched it for the first time! And then I saw ‘Miracle Worker’. Realized how Bhansali has over-dramatized the original with his usual grandeur. If you thought Bachchan was good, take a look at Anne Bancroft’s performance – its sensational.

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