Movie Review: 1984 Punjab

Review by Sameer Valecha 
Cine Punjab Reviews
July 13, 2014

Anurag Singh and Diljit Dosanjh as a team have become a brand in Punjabi Cinema. They have together appeared in the two most loved films of Punjabi Cinema, the Jatt and Juliet series (Part 1 and 2) but failed to recreate the magic in Disco Singh to a certain extend. But when a theme like "1984" reunites them with their Jatt and Juliet series producers, magic was supposed to be there.

Synopsis: 1984 Punjab is a story of a mother and her missing son set in the backdrop of 1984 Punjab, when the state was going through a terrible time of terrorism. The film depicts the longing of a mother for her son and her search for her son, who is labelled a terrorist because of the bad times in Punjab and how he eventually fights for his rights and parallels longs to return home because of his love for his mother.

Many stories have come and gone in regards to the sensitive period of 1984 which Punjab has seen. But none of them in the past had touched my heart like this one has. Maybe this one is a bit special. Because this tells the tale of a Mother and the love she has for her son, like every mother all over the world. Based on some real incidents, this is Anurag Singh’s latest offering. Director Anurag Singh, after making the audience go crazy on their seats with his previous films is back once again. But this time, he means serious business. He is at his lethal best in this one.

The Story and Screenplay of the film has been written by Anurag Singh himself and I have written it previously that nobody but only he writes the best screenplays in Punjab. Coming to the story, firstly, it is an emotional bonding of a Mother and her son. And believe me, the scenes which I saw do happen at our places in our homes as well. The story shows love of a mother for her lost son and how she goes about finding him and is set in the backdrop of the period of 1984-1986.

Screenplay of the film is fast and to the point but still it has a length of around 160 minutes. That is because it has a story to tell and stories even today can’t be told in 2 hours. They need a time span of their own. Coming to the dialogues, they have been jointly penned by Surmeet Maavi and Anurag Singh. Both have done a great job with the dialogues and seem to possess a great knowledge of the language and Punjabi spoken in that period.

Now coming to Anurag Singh, the director. What can you say about this man. He’s given Punjabi Cinema its biggest hits till date and now gives a film which will surely be remembered even 100 years from now when the history of Punjabi Cinema is written. Anyways Anurag Singh seems to have done a lot of work behind this film. Be it the locations or the properties used. All of them play a character in the film. That Murphy Radio used in the film takes the story forward time and again. The choice of Kuldeep Manak Saab’s songs in the film was excellent. Special mentions for all the technical and creative departments like Costumes, Art, Cinematography, etc…

Music has been given by some Musical Maestros of Punjab. The album has big names like Gurmeet Singh, Jatinder Shah, Nick Dhammu and Gurmoh as composers. Sukhwinder, Diljit and Harshdeep as singers. Rangrut is the big commercial track in the film whereas Awwal Allah and Meri Maa nu Suneha deyo tell you how diverse the album is. Also it has a peppy commercial number like Channo.

Now coming to the performances. Usually such films are heavily dependent on various things like Story, Direction, etc but what matters is performances. And believe me they are mind boggling and near to perfect. Kirron Kher delivers yet another landmark performance after Khamosh Pani in Punjabi films. Coming to Diljit Dosanjh this film just shows his versatility as an actor. If he can make you laugh then beware he can also make you emotional. The monologue scene where he cries in the fields depicts this.

Pawan Raj Malhotra – Yes, that’s the baddie in the film. And yes he does make you believe that he’s the bad guy and makes you hate him like anything. And if he’s successful at that, then he’s done well. Sonam Bajwa – Is she the lead actress? Yes, she is and she does have around 8 scenes and does a good job with them. Rana Ranbir is yet another fine actor in this list of genius actors. He’s done yet another good job and it seems like Anurag knows to extract the best out of him.

Rest of the cast has names like Manav Vij, Arun Bali, Vansh Bhardwaj and many others. They all succeed in their roles. Vishwas Mini and Gursharan Singh as Titri make confident debuts.

Overall, Punjab 1984 is a historic film and will surely be remembered in the history of Punjabi Cinema. It has some fine performances and above all a Director who is at his lethal best and is the unsung hero of the film. This film is surely a MUST WATCH!

Rating - ★★★★½ 

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