Neerja Courtesy of Roochster

Neerja Courtesy of Roochster

Neerja is a film based on the true-life story of Pan Am airhostess Neerja Bhanot. This 22-year-old girl was caught up with the rest of the crew and passengers at the Karachi Airport on 5th September 1986 in a hijack by a Palestinian terrorist organization.

The film starts off with Neerja coming home to a birthday party going on at the colony she stays with her family, that is mother, father and two brothers. Neerja is shown to be a fan of Rajesh Khanna and the life of that colony. The following morning her mother wakes her up for her Pam Am Flight 73 where Neerja will first time take on the duty of Head Purser. It was Neerja’s time in life to do something big.

We are shown Neerja’ boyfriend Jaideep who takes her to the airport, and her father remarks, that he should not have gotten her married to Naresh. Director Ram Madhvani then does something clever, he shows us Neerja’ married abusive life to her bravery in the hijack through flashbacks.

This is Ram’s 2nd film in Bollywood and he has surely got a hit on his record, because Neerja is a heroic story and it could possibly earn him or the protagonist played by Sonam Kapoor a National Award easily.

The film is about courage, love and an incident that killed innocent lives over terrorism. The dialogues written by Sanyuktha Chawla Shaikh are going to be memorable, especially Neerja’s mother’s speech. The interesting thing was the authenticity, Ram seemed to have stuck to every detail that he possibly could and especially focused on Neerja and not the stress going on with the relevant authorities. For example even the hijackers spoke in Arabic.

Music Director Shekhar Ravjiani is Jaideep and he is cute and since he had a few lines, not much can be said about his acting skills. Shabana Azmi as Neerja’s mother was brilliant and especially so in her speech, which is a tribute to her daughter. Sonam Kapoor has her brilliant moments and you are at conflict because at some point you know she is 22 and has had previous trauma to her self esteem so there is a certain depressive silence about her, then she surprises you with courageous moments. Sonam can do better, this is was a strong character and film, but she can do more.

Neerja is a must watch but not with children, it is difficult to explain to them what terrorism is and why the hijackers did what they were trying to.