We just saw Pad Man and we are not getting over it any sooner. Directed by the genius R Balki who has made stupendous movies like Cheeni Kum, Paa etc in the last, Pad Man is another masterpiece by him. Dealing with the very crucial yet ignored social issue of menstrual hygiene of women in India, the film has tried it’s level best to deal with the problem in a mature and satirical way, Padman scores big in terms of being the most socially relevant film in the recent past putting it in the category of films like Pink, TEPK etc. The movie is inspired by the life of Arunachalam Muruganantham who has won Padma Shri for his social activism & inventions.
Akshay Kumar plays the character of Laxmikant Chauhan who lives in a small village in Madhya Pradesh with his wife Gayatri played by Radhika Apte, his mother and sisters. He is not much qualified and works in a workshop to sustain his and his family’s livelihood. When he comes to know about his wife using dirty clothes whenever she is chumming, he gets determined for finding a permanent & healthy plus hygienic solution for the women of her family. Focussed yet without a practical solution & guidance, Laxmi tries all ways to convince his wife & other women to try the pad he made but because it is seen in such a bad light and as it is such a big taboo of men talking forget giving pads to women, he is soon after disgusted in the whole village. After his countless but failed attempts, Laxmi leaves the village after he is ridiculed by the whole village just before Gayatri’s family decides to take her away from him. He goes to a village near Indore and starts working on his invention where he meets Sonam Kapoor who plays an MBA student, Rhea whom he accidentally gives a pad he invented in her needy time. After getting to know about Laxmi’s vision, she helps him to take his dream further by making him take part in a competition which he eventually wins and gets funded for expanding his brilliant idea. Inspired by this turn up of events, Laxmi with Rhea’s help starts providing cheap sanitary pads to all parts of the nation and even outside India. He returns proudly to the village and gets the much-needed validation, respect and the love of her life, Gayatri.
Coming to the performances, Akshay Kumar as Laxmi is the life of the film. The actor will make you laugh and cry all at the same time and here is where he scores as an actor yet again after TEPK. Easily the solo actor responsible for bringing major awareness for socially relevant issues of our nation and bringing a large change, Kumar once again plays his role beautifully and honestly. His heartfelt speech in the film will move you and his performance will make you go all mushy. He proves he is the real man of B-Town by doing this film and bringing it out. Radhika Apte has delivered a kickass and surreal performance playing a woman who is old school and regressive, ie, playing a total opposite of what she is in real life. She looks beautiful and you will fall in love with her innocence. Sonam Kapoor as Rhea gives a mature performance where she looks confident, outspoken and adds the right amount of progressiveness in the film. The actress is very believable in what she did and has shunned her critics.
The real winner, nevertheless, is R Balki who directed the movie with such perfection and the noble perception that you will have to laud him for his brilliant effort. A topic which has never been made into a full-length feature film needs guts and he has kept the movie fast-paced, hard-hitting on both the heart and the brain and has made it really enjoyable & entertaining. The music is soulful and melodious proving yet again why Amit Trivedi can be the next AR Rahman. The cinematography in the film needs a special mention and is crafted very effectively. We will want you all to go watch this film, especially with the full family this coming weekend as it needs to be seen with everyone no matter what.
Our rating: 4/5