Uunchai Movie Review: Every 90s kid would remember the warmth emanated through Sooraj Barjatya’s family movies, be it Hum Saath Saath Hain or Hum Aapke Hain Koun, each of them made everyone feel a connection and made the audience resonate with them.
Uunchai is a pleasant break from the joint family narrative and is a novice take on old-age friendships. But like every Sooraj Barjatya movie, this one has a high emotional appeal, making the viewer rejoice and cry in equal parts.
The story is about three friends over the age of 70, Amit (Bachchan), Om (Kher), and Javed (Boman Irani), who lose their fourth friend to age-related issues, played by Danny Dengzongpa as Bhupen, whose heart lies in the Himalayas.
The screen opens with a beautiful scenic view of the Himalayas and then shifts to Delhi, where the story of the four friends and their youth is narrated by Amit (Amitabh Bacchan). When Bhupen passes away, things take a turn.
The three other friends, as a tribute to their late friend, decide to summit the Everest Base camp, and so they embark on this perilous journey with a road trip from Delhi to Kathmandu, via Kanpur, Lucknow, and Gorakhpur. They are joined by Javed’s wife, Sabina, played by Neena Gupta, who is unaware of their intentions and destination. A fun banter is shared by the couple, which makes the story wholesome. Another unforgettable character is Sarika, who plays the role of Bhupen’s long-lost love.
The journey from Delhi to Kathmandu is a heartfelt one, portraying life lessons right from friendship, to relationships to the parent-child equation, the narrative is not overbearing and brings out the best dialogues in the script.
The story portrays how the characters are misunderstood by their own family members and how everyone has an individual struggle, that they are fighting all by themselves This is accompanied by Amit Trivedi’s background score, adding more dimension to the scenes.
Parineeti Chopra plays the role of their instructor, who develops a close relationship with all three of them. The struggles of sub-zero temperature and age-related issues are well put together through physical manifestations such as skin peels and chapped lips.
One completely feels the emotions of the characters on screen, all the actors justify their roles and one cannot but empathize with them in both happy and emotional times.
The movie is slightly long in the second half, but one doesn’t complain as the journey to the base camp is embroiled with hurdles that the three friends cross putting their age aside. In a nutshell, the story packs together love, loss, life, and the unbreakable friendship of four friends that take them to places, literally!