Stars On Earth

27 07 2009

Over the weekend, I saw a most amazing Bollywood movie, called, Taare Zameen Par. (In English it’s called, Stars On Earth.) The movie stars the Indian actor I love, Amir Khan. Khan also directs and produces the movie…a triple threat.

The story is about an eight year old misunderstood boy who fails all of his classes in school. His family and teachers claim that he is “misbehaving” and “unruly.” The boy, Ishaan is sent to a boarding school as punishment. It is there, where he meets Khan’s character, Nikumbh, the charismatic art teacher who knows what’s “wrong” with little Ishaan. It turns out that Ishaan has a learning disability; he’s dyslexic. Nikumbh discovers Ishaan’s great talent for art and shares this great discovery with Ishaan’s whole school and family. Ishaan becomes more comfortable in school and through Nikumbh’s assistance, passes all of his classes. Ishaan wins the affection and trust back from his family and everyone “lives happily ever after.”

It’s a great, heartwarming movie, and like most Bollywood movies, it had a catchy and addicting soundtrack. The movie also includes a few cute, animated scenes to add to the movie’s focus on children. Plus, you can’t beat a song where Amir Khan shakes his butt! (See above video clip.) The scene I’ve included is where Ishaan and his classmates are introduced to their new, substitute/temporary art teacher, Nikumbh. Nikumbh is a great relief from the rest of the students’ stern and monotonous teachers.

Along with the fun song and dance scenes in the movie, the story is strong and while the pacing may be a bit slow at times, it does pick up, too. I would recommend this movie to anyone who likes Bollywood movies, contemporary Indian music, and/or is interested in teaching children, learning disabilities, and Indian culture. It is a dramatic movie with touches of fun.

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