"‘Hindi Medium’" | Not so medium
Finally someone made a movie on a very relevant subject of how language divides our society and Indian people’s obsession with angrezi language. It deals with the stereotypical images of how Hindi speaking people are considered to be middle-class and uncool, while the English speaking are affluent, with unmatchable standards. The movie depicts the plight of parents trying to get their kids admission into a fancy nursery. While Amitosh Nagpal’s dialogues were interesting, it was Irrfan Khan’s impeccable comic timing and dialogue delivery that gave the story the push it needed.
Mita (Saba) and Raj Batra (Irrfan), a not so ordinary couple from Delhi’s Chandni chowk have an ordinary dream like every other parent – to get their child, Piya (DishitaSehgal) admission in the Capital’s best English medium school for a brighter future. While Raj runs a flourishing garment business of selling ‘original copies’ of designers, his wife, Mithu struggles to adapt to an angrezi lifestyle for her daughter to learn and get admission into an elite English school. And Mithu, being the overbearing wife, already decided that she wants her daughter in one of the private, English schools by hook or by crook. Well, the hook was when the couple shifted their home from the lanes of chandni chowk to the posh area of Vasant vihar. They abandon their desi, hindi style to look more western with brands, try to walk and talk English, switch from bhangra to English beats and Mithu becomes Honey. But, all this doesn’t work because it’s almost impossible to get admission in a good school. It’s not just an admission process for the kid but also for the parents. When all that failed, they tried engineered ways to get their kid a backdoor entry by applying under a gareeb quota and moving into a poor settlement, the family takes the training of ‘how to be a gareeb.’ It was here, they meet Shyam Prakash (Deepak Dobriyal), who teaches them a few important life lessons.
Saket Chaudhary hit the right notes with this movie and brought out the most overlooked problem in India i.e. getting admission in a reputed school and how education has just become a business. While the first-half was fast-paced and full of satire, the second-half got a bit predictable and repetitive with Mithu’s same dialogues every time she lost hope of getting Piya in a high-flying school. The movie could have saved some time by cutting out its songs, which raised the question of why does every Hindi movie had to insert a song. Hoping for a better conclusion, the movie seemed like it was just wrapped up with a concluding speech by Raj on the language division and English obsession.
This movie is not just a medium one, instead, it is a perfect take on what we have become – angrez.