A story woven out of wafer thin concept, driven by morals, values and ethics with simple entertainment can be translated to a highly meaningful cinema only by a genius. Ashutosh can walk with his head held high!!! He has come up with a gem of a movie, touching the emotional chords of reality. The fusion of the west and east, and its inextricable separation cannot be displayed in a more authentic way. Swades, starts off in the backdrop of NASA, powered by the big guns of the technological field, with one of its high priority projects managed by an Indian - Mohan Bhargav, in the role of a Project Manager, aptly enacted by Shahrukh Khan. Shahrukh can be attributed to have enacted the role of his lifetime. It was really annoying to see Shahrukh in the usual run-of-the-mill roles as Rahul and what not in every other romantic flick. A highly talented actor like Shahrukh could not have had a better platform to showcase his skills. The sheer agony of having to chose NASA or charanpur to live out the remaining part of his life leaves everyone in a contemplative mood.
Mohan decides to visit India for two weeks to visit his childhood mentor, nanny(whatever) Kaveriamma. The visit to India serves as a double dose, as he gets to meet the woman of his life - Gita(Gayathri Joshi), who is an idealist with contrasting views to that of Mohan. Mohan is witness to the innumerable problems that besets the people of Charanpur. A thing as simple as electricity that remains elusive to the people of Charanpur is not taken well by Mohan. The pathos that fills him when he sees a kid selling water for 25paise at the railway station is one of the best scenes of the movie. It leaves an indelible image on the viewers even after the movie. What can he do to get the country out of the rut? Will he go back to NASA along with Kaveriamma or will he fight for the people's cause forms the crux of this well crafted movie!!!
The actors of the movie have done a fantastic job. Each scene is crafted to perfection. Shahrukh, as Mohan delivers his dialogues in his inimitable style. Gayathri Joshi is a ravishing beauty. The scene where she presents herself during her marriage talks sticks to memory for long. The lagaan actors who play the roles of Postman and cook have done a great job. The rustic countryside is picturised beautifully. A R Rahman and Javed Akhtar have proved once again why they are the best in business in today's cinema. Rahman has come up with titillating tunes, and Akhtar's lyrics are simply brilliant.
All in all, a great movie for all. The critics would simply love such a movie. Whether the Hindi cinegoers are going to love such a movie is another highly debatable topic. A movie with a social message having a documentary touch has never been respected by the cinegoers and whether Swades will change the face of hindi cinema is a million dollar question that can be answered only by the collections at the box office.
A movie not to be missed for sure!!!!