Sardar Ka Grandson wants to tap into the sentiments of people. The warm relationship between a grandmother and grandson, the brotherhood between two countries, a guy labeled as a loser trying to prove himself, etc., are the tracks in the story. But sadly, the writing here is bland. They are so desperate to create the humor and sentiments in this movie that every layer feels like an optional addition, and they could have avoided most of it. The adorable Dadi played beautifully by Neena Gupta deserved a better film.
Amreek Singh is in the USA doing a movers and packers business with his girlfriend, Radha. They broke up after Radha found it difficult to tolerate the careless attitude of Amreek. In the meantime, Amreek gets a call from his dad saying that his grandmother is in serious condition and wants to see him. When he arrives, Sardar, his grandmother, asks for his help to see her home in Lahore, which she and her husband built before the partition. As getting Visa for his grandmother had some practical complications, the only option in front of Amreek was to bring the home to his Dadi. How he managed to pull off that is what we see in Sardar Ka Grandson.
This is an extremely ambitious idea that needed some quality writing to give it some sense of believability. Transporting an old house from one country to another has numerous challenges. But Sardar Ka Son wants to skip all that. The plot points of the movie feel ridiculous. The day Amreek arrives at his ancestral home is the same day someone was trying to demolish it. And suddenly, this feel-good drama starts to act like an Aneez Bazmee no-brainer. The way Amreek gets this idea off transporting a house is also pitched in a lame way. The vagueness in the way they have planted an antagonist in the story is also quite lazy. Basically, the makers are expecting the audience to be super naive.
Unlike some of his recent releases, Arjun Kapoor gets a character that gives him a space to express a lot of emotions, and I feel that opportunity sort of exposed how limited he is as an actor. When Amreek is on the verge of crying when he sees Sardar in a ventilator, the emotional dialogues from Kapoor just couldn’t create sympathy. Rakul Preet Singh is there to be a pretty and supportive girlfriend. Kanwaljith Singh and Soni Razdan are reduced to mere caricatures, and the talented Kumud Mishra hardly has anything to do here. John Abraham and Aditi Rao Hydari are playing extended cameos in the movie. While John’s body language and dialogue delivery had no sync, Aditi Rao Hydari’s performance felt a bit too loud. The only person who makes this incoherent ride a passable one is Neena Gupta as Sardar Kaur. The irreverence and sweet mischief of that character offer a lot of entertainment, and Gupta doesn’t make it look like a prosthetic-aided performance.
Kaashvie Nair and Anuja Chauhan aren’t trying to attain any depth here through their writing. The movie’s opening scene establishes Amreek as this guy who messes up everything, and it looked too silly. Like I mentioned earlier, Kaashvie’s treatment of the movie oscillates from being a stupid comedy to a melodrama overdose. There is a song popping out of nowhere which I feel they could have easily avoided since it is a Netflix release. When you consider ideas like this that are too difficult to convince, the foundation has to be solid. But the writing is too focused on the Grandma- Grandson camaraderie that some weeping news reporters are placed in the story to make us believe that Amreek got all the required support. The house looked artificial, but in certain sequences, you will feel like appreciating the production design and visual effects folks for making it feel authentic.
There was this old scripting trope of the hero getting a solution for a tight situation while he is talking to someone. Amreek is one character whom the makers have bombarded with that ability. It kind of repeats so much in the movie that by the third time he starts to talk too much, you will be able to guess the spark he is about to get. If released in 1990, Sardar Ka Grandson would have felt like a passable movie. But for a 2021 lockdown Netflix release, it’s a terrible choice.
If released in 1990, Sardar Ka Grandson would have felt like a passable movie. But for a 2021 lockdown Netflix release, it's a terrible choice.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended