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Chalk N Duster

Chalk N Duster Poster

Critic Rating


19 Reviews
13 Ratings
in favor

Audience Rating

1 Review
2 Ratings

Movie Info





Chalk N Duster is an upcoming Bollywood movie. The film is an emotional journey of two teachers Vidya (Shabana Azmi) and Jyoti (Juhi Chawla), serving at a Mumbai–based high school. Their passion and love for teaching, bonds them in a special relationship with their students. Their gratification is good grades, moral values they strive to impart to students. However, in an evil turn of events, a wicked lady, Kamini Gupta (Divya Dutta) gets appointed as the principal, thus changing the fate of the administration.Wikipedia

Chalk N Duster Reviews


...was ready to sprint for the exit just so I didn’t have to endure another minute of this sloppy, misguided movie. Shabana Azmi and Juhi Chawla’s charming presence and sincere performances aside, this could well turn out to be one of the year’s most forgettable films.

Shubhra Gupta
Indian Express


It is a subject that deserves a great deal of attention, but not in the way this Juhi Chawla, Shabana Azmi film does it.

Rohit Vats
Hindustan Times


Chalk N Duster is a film worth your time. It’s fast, dramatic and meaningful. Simply put, a good watch.

Kusumita Das
Deccan Chronicle


A little more finesse could have helped Chalk n Duster emerge a topper in the genre. With a subject like this, telling the story well was as important as telling it at all. Unfortunately, for now it better hide its report card.

Mistaking intent for quality, Chalk N Duster’s greatest drawback is that it tries to take the high moral ground without substantiating its material or projecting the least bit of depth...

...is the unkindest cut. If you have any respect for your teachers - past present or future - give this film a miss.

Meena Iyer
Times Of India


The execution for the most part is clumsy. Yet somewhere in the second half, Gilatar redeems himself and the film. He touches on the importance of teachers in our lives and shows the apathy of the powers-that-are towards providing equal education opportunities.

The only lesson you learn is how the Indian film industry neglects veteran actresses such as Azmi and Chawla, and forces them to accept mediocre roles just to appear on the big screen again.

...is a dramedy that is high and on drama and some unintentional comedy.


...inspite of its obvious flaws, it's still worth a watch. The quiz round towards the end is quite entertaining with his suspense. The scenes where Vidya teaches with care and concern in school and her neighbourhood are enlightening. Juhi Chawla as her solid friend is endearing. And although the scenes where the ex-students and students in general come to the help of Vidya when she is in hospital appear over-the-top, it still manages to strike a chord in you.

The director's objective to bring forth the issues that teachers have been facing for decades now is laudable. But handling of such a subject evidently requires lot more finesse and depth.


Yes, 'Chalk N Duster' isn't magical or earnest like Aamir's works, or delightful like 'Rockford', or 'Stanley Ke Dabba'. It slips into the category that has Shahid Kapoor's 'Paathshaala'.

Subhash K Jha


Chalk ‘N’ Duster is not great cinema by any stretch of the imagination. It is often crude and unapologetic in its melodramatic pitch. But its heart is in the right place. It is a decent conscientious attempt to depict the bond between teachers and the taught. Shabana’s Vidya and Juhi’s Jyoti (vidya and jyoti, get it?) are more aspirational than real. There is irony there. Because the treatment of the subject is more street-play blunt than aspirational.

Manisha Lakhe


Although the movie has been made with the right premise in mind, and has an enviable cast, the shoddy execution makes it a terrible watch. You sit through it because it means well.

Tania Rana


...picks a topic rarely explored by the film industry and shows the Indian education system in its current form. Watch it to get on a nostalgia trip remembering your teachers as well be presented with the reality of the education system today. 

Save a few good performances then, Chalk N Duster is just another story about honest, diligent workers vs. big, bad management; about the common man vs. the system. Other than the 'education' angle there is nothing new, which is a shame because this angle actually has a lot of scope to be novel. Especially when it was in the capable hands of Shabana Azmi, Juhi Chawla and Divya Dutta.

Audience Reviews for Chalk N Duster

  • Tejas Nair
    Tejas Nair
    258 reviews
    Top Reviewer

    If you are making a film about schools and teachers, then it better have proper grammar and styling. But, this one here is so low on standards and execution that even the title uses a shortener.

    Vidya (Azmi) is a school teacher in her late 50s trying to make ends meet with her job of more than twenty years. The private school which she teaches in is a den of politics and sadism where other multi-talented teachers like Jyoti (Chawla) also teach. After a sudden shuffle in the top management, Kamini (Dutta), the school's supervisor becomes the principal only to make the teachers', as well as the entire school's, lives a living hell.

    While the story is straight out of a Star Plus soap, the execution is so bad that it is embarrassing. The characters are so poorly baked that they all reek of rawness, making the audience gag. Commercialization of India's private education sector is a good topic to make a documentary on, not a film, which is more preachy than your neighborhood pastor.

    At every node of the film, one is bound to find mistakes - horrible mistakes that will make you cringe. There is not a speck of realism in the screenplay nor was, it seems, there a proper study of the subject, for they even get a fact wrong. The quiz type climax just marauds it and pushes the 2 hours of reel into the black abyss of the worst and most embarrassing Bollywood films ever.

    Thespians like Azmi, Rahman, and Karnad are totally wasted, while Chawla wins the competition for worst acting.

    BOTTOM LINE: Chalk N' Duster is a sketchy drama about propaganda of Indian education system where the subject is not the issue, but the lousy execution is. Avoid. (Note: My 50-something mother loved the film, though.)

    GRADE: F

    Can be watched with a typical Indian family? YES

    January 23, 16