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14 - year - old Sikandar Raza has been living with his uncle and aunt in Kashmir, ever since his parents were killed by militants 10 years ago. The young boy, who dreams of a better life for his family by realizing his football talent, is a bit of a loner at school and an easy target for the school bullies. One day on his way home from a school football match, Sikandar finds a gun lying on the path. Despite being warned against it by his new friend Nasreen, Sikandar picks up the gun believing it to be the answer to his problems. When playing with the gun alone in the woods, Sikandar meets a young man who teaches him how to be a great shot, but the young man is not who he seems and Sikandar innocently becomes caught up in political warfare. Although the quiet Nasreen acts as Sikandar's conscience, Sikandar gets further embroiled in situations beyond his control, and innocent people get killed. As the story unfolds we see that Sikandar is an innocent victim in a game being played out ... Written by
a very gripping look at how an ordinary boy could get stuck in a cycle of violence
Normally I would not be attracted to a movie if someone told me it was on Kashmir or whatever, but I went along with a friend to see Sikandar and it was truly a very good experience.
From the first scene the story grips you and it kind of becomes a sort of roller-coaster ride filled with the crazy politicians, terrorists, religious leaders and normal people who comprise both the victims and culprits of the problems in Kashmir.
What impacted me the most though was the fact that somehow the story is not just about Kashmir. I remember reading about some of the middle eastern countries, and how its so easy to tempt a child into violence, as they have grown up in lives filled with violence, and so becoming an oppressor rather than the oppressed has an attraction. And that was what moved me about the movie. As we've all seen in the traielrs, the movie is about a young boy who finds a gun and who is tempted by the power the gun has to offer - to deal with his bullies, to solve some other problems, etc., and just for that, he is a prime recruit for a Jehadi terrorist group. Something in the news like this we just saw a few weeks ago.. Kasab is another example of a young boy trained into violence.
So the story is very interesting about the battles that go on in this world - small inner battles in the boys head, and well as bigger battles where the child is atually the victim of the battles played by the politicians (here very well done by Sanjay Suri, who I loved in Jhankaar beats), military (I think Madhavan did a good job - nice and easy for him as always), and the terrorists. The cinematography is really nice too, though the background music was bit odd at times.
I really liked the story of the boy, who could be a boy in any part of Indian I guess - the northeast perhaps where there are other issues of violence, or even a big city with all the tensions we have now. And I liked the thing that the movie was actually very gripping, with us wondering every few minutes where the twists would take us...
6 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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