Udta Punjab Movie Review


Abhishek Chaubey’s Udta Punjab is littered with standout scenes, but none matches the sledgehammer impact of the climax.

Sudden, quick on the draw and stunningly to the point, it brings the curtains down on a profane, dystopic vision of a state that was once India’s bread basket but is today burdened with a whole slew of problems, not the least of which are the horrific repercussions of narco-terror.

Chaubey tells his powerful, sinewy story with great dramatic flair, but he never ventures too far away from the harsh reality of the nexus between the drug kingpins and the state’s politicians.

In one scene, a lawman mockingly describes the current situation as Green Revolution Part Two, drawing attention to the link between the drug menace and Punjab’s worsening agrarian crisis.

If the film’s keen sense of the times that we live in is impressive, the way it etches out and develops the key characters in the drama is no less commendable.

Three of the film’s four principal characters are utterly imperfect, but they are, pretty much like Punjab itself, not beyond redemption.

When self-realization kicks in, they are all ready to give redemption a shot.

It is their journey from gloom to hope that Udta Punjab tracks without the slightest concession to overt sentimentality.

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