The Accidental Prime Minister Review & Rating
The Accidental Prime Minister Review: Watch It For Dr. Manmohan Singh
The Accidental Prime Minister chronicles the term in which Dr. Manmohan Singh was made the Prime Minister of India and the years when he was the face of PMO but actually the key powers were thought of being elsewhere.
The makers made it clear in the beginning itself the film is the dramatisation of the events that had taken place between 2004 and the end of the term of his Prime Ministership. Obviously, the film lends its title from the controversial book by Sanjay Baru.
Coming to the controversies surrounding this book and in turn the film have a certain weight but it is with the strong expectations about what had really transpired when Dr. Singh was the Prime Minister of India and how people looked at him as the accidental Prime Minister.
True. No one in their right mind would have thought of Dr. Singh as the Prime Minister of India. Sonia Gandhi rode on a lot of sympathy and people wanted to give the Congress party another shot at power after their expectations on the NDA government were not met.
The Accidental Prime Minister
The basic premise of the story starts with the intriguing premise of the situation when Congress became the single largest party in the 2004 elections. Except for the few who are opposing inside the party and those from the other parties, everyone thought that it is a given Sonia Gandhi is going to be the Prime Minister.
But things turned out different and in a political masterstroke, Sonia relinquished the post and declared Dr. Manmohan Singh as the candidate out of blue. Everyone who is opposing her was taken aback. She was hailed a demigodess for sacrificing Prime Ministership. But the power was with Sonia Gandhi as the party supremo and soon there were whispers that it is Sonia to whom the PMO and in turn, everyone is reporting than to Dr. Singh.
Sanjay Baru who was a sort of secretary and media advisor of Sri Manmohan Singh had recorded various issues which were important in the terms of Dr. Singh. The famous nuclear deal where Dr. Singh proved himself to be up to the task and the man who lead everything from the front and realised what is essential for the welfare of Indian State. But there was already friction. All these are shown in depth or touched in smaller episodes. Anupam Kher had delivered a stellar performance. But it is Akshaye Khanna's Sanjay Baru who steals the show.
Writing and performances
Like legendary South Indian director did with Manivannan's character in Tamil blockbuster Mudhalvaan, The Accidental Prime Minister director, Vijay Gutte made Sanjay Baru break the fourth wall and talk directly to the audience. Khanna's dynamic acting and brilliant modulation make the audience feel like they are direct witnesses to the happenings on the screen.
This technique helped the audience identify with Dr. Singh. Whatever the motivations of the makers of this polemic film, it served Dr. Singh very well. At least it'll change the perfect I've of people about him and understand he was not a yes man, but a strong Prime Minister who did everything in his hands for the people. Anupama Kher slowly but steadily grows on the audience and by the time the first half ends, we will get a feeling that we are watching Dr. Singh himself.
If taken as pure fiction or a cinematic creation, The Accidental Prime Minister is a terrific political popcorn entertainer. If we take it as recorded history or as a commentary on the events during Dr. Singh's rule, you may get disappointed. The film lacked depth. The narration is at once entertaining and slow at places. The screenplay has good high points which come at regular intervals and make you take interest in the proceedings till the end. The final conversation between Dr. Manmohan Singh and Sanjay Baru is pure gold.
But it all truth? Before that let me finish the obligatory comments on the crew. The music is well composed. The intrigue in the narration is carried out very well by the score composed by Sudip Roy and Sadhu Tiwari. The cinematography is okayish. At least we can get to watch clear and focused pictures. The visual effects are mediocre. But it is the substance in the story of this film which makes anyone go to the theatres. Not the added gloss, no?
True or false?
In life, there is always: 1. What I say and 2. What you say. The truth is generally told by one of the two parties and mostly the median of the two perspectives. So, all that is shown in the film is not true nor is it all a made up story. Just watch it as a political thriller with an excellent and interesting subject matter and nothing more.
But you'll certainly get to know Sri Manmohan Singh better than what you did before. He was not as lame as the opposers claim and is not the exact hero who stood up against the wrong. He took the important matter into his able hands whenever the need rose and rest, just let it happen.
Coming to other actors, Suzanne Bernet steals the show as Sonia Gandhi. Arjun Mathur who played Rahul Gandhi (you may hear him being called Raul many times by Bernet ;-)) is unintentionally comedic. Aahana Kumra as Priyanka Gandhi looked good but didn't do well. Rest of the cast filled the screen where and when the scenes demanded.
Decision making advice
So, finally you may ask, shall we watch this film? The answer is an emphatic yes. Dr. Manmohan Singh who helped bring India out of brink guided by Sri PV Narasimha Rao and then who gave the nuclear deal as the gift and as the man who kept the communists in their rightful place deserves to be known closely. At least to change your perspective of this great man, you need to watch this film. And you won't get bored for a minute is a big bonus. Chimple!
- The polemic but an intriguing source material
- The narrative technique
- Akshaye Khanna's as Sanjay Baru
- Anupam Kher as Dr. Manmohan Singh
- You'll get to know Dr. Singh a bit better
- Lack of depth in political commentary
- Slow pace at times
Pycker Rating: 3.25 out of 5
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What is The Accidental Prime Minister About?
Former Prime Minister of India and the Finance Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh is a great intellectual who accidentally associated with Indian Politics. He with the guidance of Sri P. V. Narasimha Rao brought India back from the financial brink in the early 1990s.
Then in the new millennium, he again came into limelight when he was announced to be the Prime Minister candidate when Sonia Gandhi withdrew from contention. He was so successful that, Congress when going to the 2009 elections projected him as the national hero and the Prime Ministerial candidate.
But things were not as rosy as we all expect and we all know. Despite his thumping triumph of bringing Congress again to power with several more seats than in the previous elections and his winning performance in the parliament during the Nuclear Deal time, he was labeled as a yes man for Sonia Gandhi and it was Sonia Gandhi who had the remote for the government. Scams and scandals marred his second term. He was ridiculed as Mounmohan Singh for his silence on all the scams.
His secretary and media advisor and noted political analyst, Sanjay Baru who closely observed Dr. Singh wrote a book titled The Accidental Prime Minister. The present movie starring legendary Bollywood actor Anupam Kher in the role of Sri Manmohan Singh is based on that controversial book. Obviously, it irked congress-men and is mired in controversies with several states banning it.
The Accidental Prime Minister Promises
An intriguing political drama
Despite the perceived softness of Dr. Manmohan Singh, he was an able leader who led India unscathed through the 2008 global recession. We all know all these development perks we have been enjoying nowadays are the fruits of the work done by the former Prime Ministers of India Sri P. V. Narasimha Rao and Dr. Manmohan Singh. So, now we are going to watch from an insider's point of view how Dr. Singh operated as the Prime Minister.
The movie features a lot of intriguing behind the scenes politics and how Dr. Singh clashed with Congress high command in order to do his duty of serving the best interests of Indian Citizens as the Prime Minister. Sanjay Baru was accused of misusing the close association with a former Prime Minister and the confidential information of the government operations during the period of 2004-2008.
Whatever may be your opinion on the matter, The Accidental Prime Minister is going to be a highly intriguing political drama which showcases several unknown facets of Dr. Singh's term.
Anupam Kher as Dr. Manmohan Singh
Anupam Kher is a top-notch actor is a known fact but none expected him to nail the role of Sri Manmohan Singh to the T. He looked the part right from close resemblance to the diction and body language. The trailer bowled many movie buffs over not just with the intriguing plot but also Anupam Kher's performance. His power-packed performance is sure to win the hearts of the critics and the audience.
Stellar support cast and a well-made film
Akshaye Khanna plays the role of Sanjay Baru who wrote the source material and a media advisor of Dr. Singh during his first term. It is through his eyes that we get to know about the game-changing events of Dr. Singh's term including the biggest win of his term, the nuclear deal.
Suzanne Bernert as Sonia Gandhi, former president of Indian National Congress is surprisingly good. She nailed the looks department and the bohemian air of the once most powerful lady in Indian politics. We also get to see Ajit Satbhai as Sri P. V. Narasimha Rao, former Prime Minister of India whom Dr. Singh states as his political mentor. Besides the cast, the movie is excellently made from what is evidenced by the trailer. Right from the actor's appearance to the costumes and the sets, it is not an ordarinarily made film.
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