'Parmanu: The Story of Pokhran' is a clearly uninspired and disinterestedly written account of the nuclear tests in Pokhran. While the style of telling is linear but still satisfactory, the film, with its time-tested formulas and clearly unsupportive performances doesn't quite soar. It dismisses its style right in its first half, although its fizz is lost right after the first few minutes.
But you can still watch 'Parmanu' because it has some brilliant brushstrokes. While the performances are clarly not helping (thank you, Boman Irani, thank you, Diana Penty), there is still no dearth of storytelling. The film is a one-man show just for John Abraham, who is described as a 'Lord Krishna' here, but there are some rooting factors too. But yeah, too few.
Over the 70 odd years of Indian Independence, our nation have achieved numerous feats such as Green Revolution, White Revolution, ISRO's exploits etc. One such notable achievement was India's nuclear power capabilities which was accomplished on the back of the nuclear tests conducted in Pokhran in 1998. Apart from the fact it was a crowning moment for India, it is also one of the biggest failures of the CIA which had no clue about it despite the numerous satellites spying in the region. Though the events are well documented in print, Abhishek Sharma decided to re-create it on celluloid. So did he stick to the actual details or is it just merely fiction with an over dosage of patriotism???
It's 1995 & China has just conducted 43 nuclear tests which had sent our politicians into a frenzy due to the increasing might of its neighbours. Among the numerous nonsensical retaliation suggestions that are floated at the PM's Office, Ashwat Raina (John Abraham), a IAS Officer proposes the idea that India also needs to conduct nuclear tests. His suggestion is met with ridicule & though the PM's secretary takes up the idea, Ashwat is sidelined & it reflects in the eventual planning as the nueclear test turned out to be a failure. As one would expect, Ashwat is made the scapegoat which breaks his confidence. However, three years later he gets a shot at redemption when Himanshu Malik, the new Principal Secretary to the PM puts him in charge of the nuclear mission. How Ashwat & his team accomplishes the task under the nose of the US spy satellites forms the crux of the movie.
Abhishek Sharma made quite a few look up & take notice of him with his debut venture "Tere Bin Laden" which released close to a decade back. However, "Parmanu" will be his first major movie in terms of budget & canvas on offer. Based on the Pokhran nuclear tests, masterminded by APJ & Co.; Abhishek in the company of Saiwyn Quadras & Sanyukta Chawla Sheikh (of "Neerja" & "Mary Kom" fame) has created a story that is more fictional than the actual truth. The whole mission seemed rather too simplistic though the tension built up towards the climax was credible. None of the technical aspects deserves a special mention as it average at best.
John Abraham has given a sincere effort & fitted the role of the protagonist. Boman Irani was impressive in his brief role while the rest of the cast were fine as well though I felt Diana Penty wasnt quite the right choice for her role.
Verdict: With not much competition in the first week, "Parmanu" was able to break even without breaking much sweat. However, with "Veere Di Wedding" having hit the screens this weekend; it remains to be seen how much more it will be able to collect. There is no doubt that the movie is decently crafted, but I felt it could have been more impactful. In short, you can give it a try!!!
wonderful movie to watch out the real story of pokhran, every indian should watch the movie.