Most movie reviews have numbers or stars that go along with it, telling us if it is good or bad. For this movie, however, I’ll make an exception. There will not be any numbers, no ratings and no comparisons!
Cast: Mrinal Kulkarni, Upendra Limaye, Rishikesh Joshi, Manoj Joshi, Aishwarya Narkar, Usha Nadkarni, Shikhar Hitendra Thakur, Pravin Tarde, Sagar Talashikar, Gauri Gadgil, Sanjana Rai
Director: Mahesh Limaye
Writer: Amber Hadap and Ganesh Pandit
Screenplay: Amber Hadap, Ganesh Pandit & Mahesh Limaye
Producer: Riteish Deshmukh & Uttung Hitendra Thakur
It is funny how we live in a world where our lives are dictated by numbers. Our worth is decided by the numbers in our bank balance, our work by the numbers on our paycheck, our intelligence by the number on our mark sheet or IQ tests and even our health by calculating our heartbeats! Just about everything is graded using numbers. Our obsession with numbers and why we give them such importance just doesn’t add up. However, there is one special number, the number zero. Zero was India’s gift to the world, which fit into the number system but represented NOTHING. While other numbers could be counted on our fingertips, zero could not, and many might have thought of it as useless! Zero’s speciality lies not in what it represents but what it gave to the numeric system; it expanded it. In a world where numbers were counted only till 9, zero became the value of the 10th finger, and it did not just stop there. Zero took the numeric system to a value that could no longer be counted on the fingertips, nor by any computer. The special number (zero) is the reason we have infinity, a number beyond our understanding. So is Gauri Gadgil, who plays herself in the film.
Gauri is unique, stands out in a crowd and is a special child. Special because she has Down syndrome, which means her progress is slower than other kids. Due to her ‘special’ status, she is asked to leave her school and the numbers in her IQ test too show no hope for her. This situation creates problems in her parents’ relationship and the rift only widens, forcing Gauri and her mother (played by Mrunal Kulkarni) to stay with Gauri’s mama (played by Rishikesh Joshi). The cheerful mama gets along wonderfully with Gauri and the child is soon enrolled in a special school. Her teacher suggests that Gauri should start swimming, as it helps hand-eye coordination and Gauri is taken to Coach Sardeshmukh (played by Upendra Limaye). How swimming becomes an important motivator and changes her life is what the movie is all about.
The great part about the movie is that it is a true story, and the lead character is played by Gauri herself. Her life is inspiring and the movie beautifully captures it. The director does a fantastic job of getting the right frame at the right time and the writing only makes it all the more better. The actors fit into their roles perfectly, the end result being an amazing Marathi movie we can surely be proud of! What’s more, most of the movie is shot in Pune, making it a must watch for Punekars. Others should watch it too, even the non-Marathi speaking audience.
Frankly speaking, I cannot find one particular reason to tell you that’ll help you decide whether to watch this movie or not. The reasons why I would recommend it are many, the primary ones being the fact that it’s inspiring, makes you smile and sends a wonderful message. ‘Yellow’ showcases the level of maturity that Marathi movies have achieved, giving them leverage over Bollywood, Tollywood and other regional language films. If you are a non-Marathi, do watch ‘Yellow’. It has subtitles and will showcase how brilliant our Marathi movies are!
The other significant reason to watch ‘Yellow’ is the challenge (the word that Gauri learns slower than a normal child, but the meaning of which she understands better than any normal person). The challenge is to watch the movie and not shed a tear or be moved (I had to hold back mine but a few scenes did make my eyes wet). No matter how heartless or emotionless you are, the movie WILL touch you. Challenge accepted?
If yes, there is a bar at the top, which allows readers to rate the movie. Do give your ratings and share with us if the movie touched you or left you just as stone cold as you were before!