Winner at few and selected for more film festivals abroad, this is the second film post I AM KALAAM which puts me in a big confusion about the selection procedure followed by these film festivals. Honestly, I can think of only two reasons, why such simple yet ineffective films can reach these festivals abroad representing India.
One – Probably there are too many big & small film festivals being organized all over the world who are short of films and are ready to accept all kind of entries in their contest, irrespective of their content, especially from India for its universal global fame.
And Two – It seems that there is not enough choice with the festival jury abroad regarding the films coming from India, which can be called perfect for the festival circuit. And therefore they are forced to include whatever they actually have on the table just to add India’s name in their brochure.
As per my understanding, a festival nominee or winner should expectedly be a film with some out of the box thought structure, shocking subject or treatment like we had in UDAAN which came in 2010. But here in YEH KHULA AASMAAN we don’t have any such out of the routine subject matter or execution which makes you feel great in the end. The film starts off promisingly showing the result and exams stress on a young boy who is not getting the much needed attention from his parents living abroad. Yet it fails to sustain the meaningful impact and then goes on to become an unexciting sports film talking about a forgotten sport of Kite Flying.
The plot which should have been used by the director Gitanjali Sinha to impart many precious life teaching lessons through the interaction between the boy and his grandfather actually goes flat in absence of any well written thoughtful scenes. The same can be said for the inclusion of Kite Flying added in the second half to showcase a heritage sport of India, still famous in its smaller cities. In fact I doubt that is what might have been the reason for the film’s entry into the various festivals abroad.
In short, YKA has only three merits in its favour. It has a soothing cinematography capturing the village locales, some well sung songs (lacking the melody) and an impactful performance of Raghuveer Yadav which forces you to keep watching it till the end. Otherwise it has few amateur performances from the youngsters and one big miscast, Yashpal Sharma in the role of a foreign settled entrepreneur. No doubt, simplicity has its own beauty....but YEH KHULA AASMAAN remains too simple to be applauded from start to finish (lacking the beauty part) and therefore I would not be able to recommend it despite of many festival references given on its posters. So you can easily skip it to be watched on any TV Channel after a few months.