Raghuvir shines in heart-warming tale `Yeh Khula Aasmaan`

Film: ‘Yeh Khula Aasmaan’; Cast: Raghuvir Yadav, Raj Tandon, Anya Anand, Yashpal Sharma and Manjusha Godse; Director: Gitanjali Sinha; Rating: ***

It was that great poet-thinker Harindranath Chattopadhyay who said: "It`s very simple to be difficult, but very difficult to be simple." By that logic, debutant director Gitanjali Sinha has pulled off a reasonably admirable feat in this simple staright-from-the-heart film about the relationship between a neglected boy Avinash (Raj Tandon) and his lonely grandfather.

The film vaguely echoes L.V. Prasad`s 1974 tearjerker ‘Bidaai’, though not in any overt way.

That the grandfather who embraces the boy`s loneliness and insecurities is played by Raghuvir Yadav is a happy coincidence, and one that fills up the rather austere spaces in the film`s narrative.

The small-town ambience in Bihar, the old sprawling houses with acres of greenery stretching out from here to eternity, furnish the film with a burnished exterior.

As for the interiors, don`t look too deep. Sinha seems content skimming the surface of the emotions gliding along gently as the boy finds a new beginning in his grandfather`s company.

Dramatic conflicts are created through some villainous elements creeping in with embarrassing inopportunity into the placid ambience. The build-up towards a kite-flying contest is negotiated with disarming naivette.

‘Yeh Khula Aasmaan’ is an old-fashioned simple and transparent tale told with a straightforwardness that challenges current filmmaking trends of irrelevant complexities.

The narration is kept simple and largely formulistic. A romance between the gawky hero and the-girl-next-door (Anya Anand) is teased into the tale. The real hero of the film, besides the small-town ambience, is Raghuvir. He is in his elements, even pitching in with a folk song somewhere down the line while the youngsters at the helm serve their purpose.

Yashpal Sharma as Avinash`s sophisticated tycoon-father is completely miscast.

‘Yeh Khula Aasmaan’ is a well-intended heartwarming film. More mellow than melodrama, it revels in postures of pristine idyllism associated with non-metropolitan life.

There are no heart-stopping moments of high and low. The drama, when it ensues, is brought on with disarming simplicity. That the heart is in the right place is undeniable.

Bureau Report