The Kashmir Files Movie Review Rating: 4/5
Filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri received great response for his 2019 directorial venture The Tashkent Files, about the death of former Prime Minister of India, Lal Bahadur Shastri. The film started off slow, but as word-of-mouth kicked in, its business picked up really well and it emerged as a box office success by the end of its theatrical run.
After the success of The Tashkent Files, Agnihotri has come up with The Kashmir Files which sheds light on the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits during the Kashmir Insurgency. It stars Mithun Chakraborty, Anupam Kher, Darshan Kumar, Pallavi Joshi, Chinmay Mandlekar, Prakash Belawadi, and Puneet Issar in important roles. Here’s what our reviewer has to say about the much-talked-about film.
STORY: The Kashmir Files tells the story of Pushker Nath Pandit (Anupam Kher) who lives in the valley with his family. A retired teacher, Pandit knows it well the situation has turned worse in the valley, but he will not leave his motherland for anything in the world. As ill-luck would have hit, his son is shot dead by a group of insurgents. The head of the group being an ex-student of Pundit. The film shows how even his true friends fail to help him in his trying times. Years later, his grandson visits the valley only to find out the real truth behind the killing of his family and the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits.
HIGHS: The Kashmir Files is the story of both hope and hopelessness. The best thing about the film is its taut writing. Writer-director Vivek Agnihotri does not exaggerate anything and sticks to the facts. Nor he underrepresents what happened in the valley in 1990. He shows the real, gut-wrenching events in the most honest way possible.
Apart from its brilliant writing, what makes The Kashmir Files a success is its stellar cast. The filmmaker has selected a bunch of skilled actors to portray some perfectly fleshed out characters. Anupam Kher shines like never before. The veteran actor has been a part of hundreds of films over the years, but you are going to remember his act in The Kashmir Files for a long time. It won’t be an exaggeration to say that Kher has delivered one of his career’s best performances. Maybe he could do what he did in The Kashmir Files because he himself is a Kashmiri Pandit.
Bhasha Sumbli as Pandit’s daughter-in-law is perfectly cast. Darshan Kumar as Krishna Pandit is a revelation. He has got some of the best scenes in the film. His speech towards the climax will give you goosebumps. Pallavi Joshi as Professor Radhika Menon who brainwashes Krishna is terrific. Chinmay Mandlekar who plays the lead of militants Farooq Malik Bitta sends a shiver down your spine with his menacing act. Mithun Chakraborty as IAS officer Brahma Dutt is good, and so are other actors.
LOWS: Some people may find the film a little long, but if you are really invested in the film, you won’t mind its long run. You may avoid watching it with children.
FINAL VERDICT: The Kashmir Files is one of the most important films of our times; you should not miss it at any cost. Strong writing, impeccable performances and skilled direction are some of the major highlights of the film.
Watch The Kashmir Files trailer:
Banner: Zee Studios, Abhishek Agarwal Arts
Director: Vivek Agnihotri
Cast: Anupam Kher, Pallavi Joshi, Bhasha Sumbli, Darshan Kumaar
Runtime: 170 Minutes