Warm and funny
There’s something perfect about Barfi. Something warm, comforting, funny, something complete. It wraps you up in one of those protective hugs. The feeling is just like holding on to the little finger of the one you trust the most. It is like homecoming. Of course for the likes of us for whom Darjeeling and Kolkata are not only geographical spaces but living breathing entities, Barfi is home. And Anurag Basu could not have painted this picture better. The romantic gloom of an overcast Darjeeling sky, the misty hills and the little train — Barfi [Ranbir Kapoor] romances Darjeeling with a refreshing lilt in his steps. And just as smoothly he brings his magic to Kolkata — the small bylanes, the half made Durga idols, the political posters and the phuckha. Barfi is a romance, but not the cliched romance that has dream sequences set in the Alps or the Greek beaches. It is that home-grown romance that seeps into your skin, simply because it is so real. Deaf and mute, Barfi wears his heart on his sleeves, flirts with random strangers, bumps into poles and falls in love with Shruti [Illeana D’Cruz], engaged to a rather serious suitor [Jishnu Sengupta]. Named Murphy by his father, Barfi cannot pronounce his name and the sound he utters is what stays. Shruti’s relationship status makes no difference to him as he goes all over town stealing her away from the life her mother [Rupa Ganguli] has planned. Barfi goes ahead and proposes only to find a silent Shruti in response. He knows that he is indeed nothing in comparison to her perfect fiance. In all this miffed romance there’s another silent figure who gradually morphs to the forefront. Jhilmil [Priyanka Chopra] is the autistic girl whose world is defined by the play of light on broken mirrors and paper cranes. Abandoned by her parents, Jhilmil’s family is her grandfather and the owner of the special school where she is left by her parents. Jhilmil’s grandfather, one of the richest men in Darjeeling wants her back home. Jhilmil comes back home to find that she never belonged. Barfi, a part of her childhood as his father was the family chaffeur, is another fragment she recognises besides her old maid and her grandfather. When Barfi’s father falls sick, picking an easy way to make money Barfi decides to kidnap Jhilmil, but chaos breaks loose when she is kidnapped by someone else. While the plot keeps you gripped, the story travels back and forth through a timeline narrated by Shruti and the police inspector [Saurabh Shukla]. With a brilliant background score and soothing soundtracks — Barfi is predominantly a movie that thrives on the feel and not the dialogues. And believe us, you won’t miss the sound of the voice. Ranbir and Priyanka steal the show, but it is mainly Ranbir’s game. Illeana is a beautiful addition, she provides the perfect balance of poise and freshness. Anurag Basu has tapped in to the right nuances, the feel, the language and the colours of the world. No scene is imperfect. We are saying that. Face it.