Tahaan [2008]

Finally, I have started watching Films I've missed in 2008. And that too, after 'pinching' of thebollywoodfan. Who reminded me by his excellent post about this movie. And all his words lead me to nearest shop and I got Tahaan on second day itself !! Here is my quick review of this lovely fable.

Tahaan directed by ace cinematographer Santosh Sivan, is an excellent piece of film making. On a little scale, he puts this vast canvas of Kashmir. It has been ages since we saw Kashmir like this. My God !! What we are missing... After Dil Se, in which Santosh had captured beautiful Ladakh in his lense, here he beautifully uses his brush to color the canvas of the screen. Its like reading a fable from our school time story cupboard.

The Fog and smoke creates 'wow' visuals on screen. Love it.

Naturally, the story is somewhat based on militants and army. But moreover its a story about Tahaan - the central character's quest to get back his beloved donkey, Birbal. And over this quest He gets to see and learn many things. Also a surprise too....Purav Bhandare who plays Tahaan, gives absolutely heart warming performance. Below is one of the scene, I loved of him.

Victor Banerjee as his grandpa is in a short but again touching performance. He reminded me of my childhood when we used to listen stories from my grandpa.

Sarika is always a delight to see on screen. She is mute mother of Tahaan. And she does talk with her eyes a lot.

Anupam Kher whose role I thought would be negative, but I was wrong. And again his character is well written and he performs well. And, who else can talk about pain of Kashmiri Pundits then him?

Rahul Bose, in an unusual one, is also too good. Everyone, just everyone has given a top notch performance. Even Rahul Khanna in his 5 mins. appearance, reminded me of the old time 'lalas' [ala Mother India].

And above all, the endearing performance of Birbal-the donkey.

Technically this movie is so brilliant. Everything from production design to cinematography to outstanding sound design, is just too perfect. I loved these two little scenes with some lovely folk music.

All in all, its a must must see movie. These kinda movies are a rare genre and thank God *it is*. Now, I got more expectations from Sikandar.

And lastly, here are some screencaps of the movie, featuring lovely people of Kashmir.


  1. Really glad you enjoyed it Darshit! Way to go, going out and getting the DVD within a couple of days!!! Thanks for the link :)

    That frame with the four guys singing to folk music was so effectively used, na? And I should have said more about the classy Birbala. I almost want to wave my hands and have him run after me!

  2. Okay, after yours and the Bollywood Fan's reviews in one week, I really, really want to see this.

  3. theBollywoodFan You are absolutely welcome. And for link, now I feel everyone amongst us [bloggers] so close that we don't need to thank anyone. Do we?? In filmi...'Dosti mein, no sorry no thanks'' :)

    Yes, even though I couldn't understand what they were singing, it was such an interesting piece of music that it leaves mark. Do you know what they were singing?? I am quite behind in understanding Urdu and other languages having roots in it. Even I am helpless for lovely 'Aarzoo' from Sikandar. If you can put meaning to it, I would enjoy it more.

    And man, your imagination !! I can see now: 'you' running on mist clad roads of Kashmir, behind Birbal [apples in his bag :) ]

    ajnabi Now its your turn !!! :) can I expect your post on this, in nearest future???

  4. I have Tahaan's DVD lying around, need to watch it this weekend. Had planned to watch it last weekend after reading tBF's post, but too much coursework back then :(

    I'll get back to your post this weekend. The screencaps look lovely!

  5. And yes, I'm really looking forward to Sikandar. It's releasing in June. Delayed :(

  6. If theBollywoodFan's review hadnt already convinced me to watch this one, yours would! Lovely screencaps. And what do the two of you (you and tBF) mean by "Birbal's performance"? Surely he was really a donkey and not "acting"?!!! ;-)

    And that last screencap is heartbreaking. I suspect I'll need to watch this with a box of tissues handy, but all in the cause of good cinema!

  7. Bhargav Looking forward to your 'strict' review. As always..Best luck with your coursework.

    Yeah, so many good movies got delayed in past like Sikandar. Another one is Rang Rasiya. Is it sure coming in June?

    bollyviewer I am happy that this convinced you. Indeed the whole movie is so beautiful. I love to rewatch and regret that couldn't watch in hall. Ref: Birbal, well, you said it. :D

    Oh no...they are just playing 'chor police' kinda game. [read tBF's post?!] But yes, the movie is somewhat tissue worthy. So go on, get some tissues, put your AC on lowest temp. [to feel cool Kashmir], have some 'kaawa' and watch this one.

  8. Hey Darshit, sorry for the late reply (I know, I know, no thank you and sorry, but still), it's been a crazy week.

    I don't know which language they're singing in, it's got to be some tribal/folk language popular in the region. The musical and vocal arrangements actually sound closer to Farsi and Persian music, that's my view, at least. Which might not be surprising, since Farsi is a parent language for Urdu (just as Arabic and Hindi are as well). I need to go back to Aarzoo from Sikandar, I'll get back to you about that when I see the film.


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