Watching ‘The Lunchbox’ is undoubtedly an amazing experience for its realistic approach. The film is an astounding creation since the story is classic and innovative, performance of all the three main actors is marvelous and finally the film shares a beautiful message.
Plot – ‘The Lunchbox’ has an interesting story to tell. Sometimes a wrong train takes you to a better destination – this is the central theme of this internationally acclaimed movie. The story also highlights the famous ‘dabbabala’ (Lunch box delivery service) of Mumbai.
Saajan Fernandes (Irrfan Khan), a widower is an ill-tempered accountant in a government office, who is on the verge of retirement. Ila (Nimrat Kaur) is a neglected housewife and so lonely. Once the housewife prepares a mouth-watering meal and sends it via the ‘dabbabala’ to her husband. But by mistake the meal arrives at Saajan’s table. On realizing that her tenderly prepared meal was eaten by someone else, Ila puts in a note in the steel lunchbox the following day.
Saajan reciprocates to the note and this pair of strangers begins a timid friendship through routinely exchanged notes, sharing with each other their dreams, their memories of loved ones snatched away, and their lonely lives.
Another talented actor of Bollywood Nawazuddin Siddiqui is also part of the film. His character Shaikh is a younger officer hovering to take over from Saajan. The opportunist Shaikh forges a bond with Saajan despite his initial reluctance and it is a fun to watch him in the film.
Performance – With ‘The Lunchbox’, Irrfan adds another brilliant performance to his list of films. After watching the film one can say that the script was written keeping him in view for the main lead. Nimrat Kaur, who got selected after a tough audition for the role of Ila is a fine theatre actor groomed in Mumbai and her role is flawless as a lonely housewife, seeking love, in the film. Nawazuddin is also a powerful actor who has again proved his abilities through this film. The character he has played here is a new one for him, but has amazed the audience through his acting skill.
Review – Along with the three main actors, credit for the success of the film goes to debutant director Rietesh Batra, who presents such a wonderful movie right at the beginning of his career as an independent director.
Concept of the story has been witnessed earlier in ‘Sirf Tum’ or ‘Aparna Sen’s ‘Japanese Wife’, but acting of the unalienable three and the balanced sequences as well as characterization, makes the film a super one unlike the earlier ones. There is certain resemblance from Hollywood movie ‘You’ve Got Mail’, but still ‘The Lunchbox’ is an outstanding one.
Verdict – Films like ‘The Lunchbox’ are not always made. So go grab the opportunity of watching the movie as early as possible to refresh your mind with a beautiful and different love story.
Director – Ritesh Batra
Starring: Irrfan Khan, Nimrat Kaur, Nawazzuddin Siddiquie
TNI Rating -**** & ½ (4 & ½ ) Stars out of 5.