Hawaa Hawaai Review

If there is anyone in India who truly understands children and the issues which plague them, it is Amol Gupte. Having written a decade defining film like Taare Zameen Par and having directed one of the biggest sleeper hits of 2011 Stanley Ka Dabba, expectations from Hawaa Hawaai are undoubtedly supposed to be huge. He is back with his son Partho Gupte as the lead for this film. So does Hawaa Hawaai manage to win hearts?

Story: Arjun Waghmare (Partho Gupte) is a child labour who works at a tea stall for the most meagre of wages to help his family survive a harsh city like Mumbai. However, the tea stall he works in, is located close to a skating training centre which is run by Aniket Bhargava (Saqeeb Saleem). He falls in love with the sport and wants to be a champion. To achieve this, he enlists the help of his encouraging fellow-destitute friends. Together they make roller-skates from scrap objects that they are able to find in the garage. They are somehow able to capture the attention of Aniket who takes it up as a challenge to train and develop Arjun.

Hawaa Hawaai
Hawaa Hawaai Movie Review

Review: Amol Gupte certainly has his heart set in the right place. His intentions are crystal clear. He wants to show the world through Hawaa Hawaai that no matter what your social conditions are, you can be happy and you can thrive in life. He understands the melancholy of the situation but never overtly dramatizes the story to draw out false tears except for two or three occasions. Amol works with material that he is comfortable with and that accentuates the story telling in Hawaa Hawaai. The tone Amol captures works for the most part.

The technical aspects of Hawaa Hawaai take it up a notch. The cinematography is in tune with the vision of the director and the frames are very well developed. The editing is also crisp with the scenes never overstaying their welcome. The music by Hitesh Sonik and Amol Gupte are not out of this world but they help the story. It is actually a good thing that the music is not amazing because it would have taken undue attention away from the storyline itself.

Acting: National Award Winner Partho Gupte shines once again and shows us what a powerhouse of talent he truly is. He shines in his role. Amol knows his son’s strengths and writes the role of Arjun accordingly. This gives Partho a lot of scope to shine. Saqeeb Saleem also puts in a good performance. He gets a meaty role and makes it count. But towards the culmination of Hawaa Hawaai, the viewer may feel that he overplayed the emotions. The child actors who play the role of Arjun’s friends are all unbelievably good. Such maturity at such a young age is something to behold. Makrand Deshpande in a fleeting role as Arjun’s father is perfectly cast.

Conclusion: Hawaa Hawaai is a delightful film that takes the viewer through an emotional roller coaster ride without ever exploiting the conditions it showcases. Amol Gupte has kept up his streak. Families from Hawaii to Howrah should be made to watch this great little film.

Positives:

  • The half-stoic approach to filmmaking by Amol Gupte works very well
  • Partho Gupte’s brilliant acting
  • Partho’s gang of friends
  • Saqeeb Saleem has grown further with Hawaa Hawaai
  • The editing and cinematography suits and aids, the desired tone and fluency of the film

Negatives:

  • Two three sequences seem derivative and inspired, and rely a bit too much on the underlying drama
Rating: ★★★★☆
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