There are children’s films. And there are films about children. Over the years, Iranians filmmakers - and now Iraqis too - have emerged as master storytellers in the latter type.
Priyadarshan, our very own filmmaking machine known to stray away from his forte, comedy, now and then to come up with a thought-provoking film that can even lap a National award, interprets Iranian director Majid Majidi’s Oscar nominated film ‘Children of Heaven’ into an Indian setting with a terrorism angle and a few product endorsements thrown in. Insensitive, you would say, if you’ve seen Majidi’s masterpiece. But then, anything goes in Bollywood.
Made on a shoe-string budget, Bumm Bumm Bole, starring the Taare Zameen Par find Darsheel Safary and Ziyah Vastani, is an unsubtle, overdramatized, Bollywoodized version of a film that has driven many a viewer to tears. The film is about a poor 12-year-old kid Pinu (Darsheel) searching for a lost pair of shoes that belongs to his sister. His parents (Atul Kulkarni and Rituparna Sengupta) have lost their jobs at a tea estate and are hard pressed for money. Obviously, they can’t afford to buy a new pair of shoes. So, Pinu and his sister share their only pair of shoes and keep it all secret from their parents until Pinu finds the lost pair or gets a new one. At last Pinu gets a chance to win a pair of new sneakers - by running in a marathon. But he must come, not first, not second, but third, to win the footwear.
It’s a simple, touching, heart-warming story that has been messed up gloriously by Priyadarshan in a bid to make you shed a tear in every important sequence. On top of it, writer Manisha Korde adds a terrorism angle. But what cannot be forgiven is the cheap attempt to advertise two brands (a shoe brand and an energy drink) in the second half.
Darsheel Safary isn’t half as good as he was in his debut film, but he does shine in a few sequences, the climax, sadly, not being one of them. The cute and cherubic Ziyah Vastani does hold your attention with her natural performance. Atul Kulkarni chips in a fine act as a man troubled by his poverty and cops. Rituparna Sengupta is just about okay.
All in all, ‘Bumm Bumm Bole’ is a disappointment if you compare it to the film it’s an official remake of. Even on its own, it’s not worth your time.