Prime Video has recently released the film “Pippa,” featuring Ishaan Khatter, Mrunal Thakur, and Priyanshu Painyuli in prominent roles. The movie draws inspiration from Brigadier Balram S Mehta’s book, “The Burning Chaffees.”
“Pippa” unfolds as a biographical account of Captain Balram Singh Mehta’s life. The narrative delves into the events of 1947 when India underwent partition, resulting in the division of Pakistan into East and West. The film explores the struggle for independence in East Pakistan (Bangladesh), triggered by the denial of elections by President General Yahya Khan in 1970. Faced with violent suppression by the Pakistani army, a significant number of East Pakistan citizens seek refuge in India. The movie centers around the role played by the Indian Army in facilitating the liberation of East Pakistan.
The film provides a comprehensive portrayal of India’s involvement in East Pakistan’s liberation, highlighting the motivations behind the revolutionary movement, the challenges faced during the rebellion, and the hardships endured by refugees due to the actions of the Pakistan Army. “Pippa” underscores the humanitarian choices made by the Indian government.
The war scenes in “Pippa” are executed with precision, offering gripping moments that captivate the audience, especially a splendid sequence in the mid-section. The film boasts solid visuals and seamless VFX work.
Ishaan Khatter impressively embodies the character of Captain Balram Singh Mehta, showcasing two contrasting shades with finesse. Mrunal Thakur delivers a commendable performance in her substantial role, despite limited screen time. Priyanshu Painyuli excels, contributing to the effectiveness of the family drama.
The pacing in the final 40 minutes of the film slows down, with the potential for improvement by trimming repetitive scenes. The movie’s conclusion could have been more impactful.
Soni Razdan’s performance is noteworthy but underutilized. The inclusion of a song in the first hour, given the film’s serious tone, seems unnecessary. The decision not to release the film in theaters is considered a missed opportunity, particularly for the impactful war scenes that deserve a cinematic experience.
AR Rahman’s Oscar-winning composition elevates the film with an intriguing background score. The visuals, skillfully captured by cinematographer Priya Seth, are spectacular, especially during the war sequences. While the editing could have been tighter, the production values are excellent.
Director Raja Krishna Menon successfully sets up the narrative, with a well-executed portrayal of the lengthy war sequence. However, the film loses momentum in the final minutes, an aspect that could have been addressed.
“Pippa” stands as a sincere effort shedding light on the Indo-Pak 1971 war, particularly the Battle of Garibpur, showcasing the bravery of three siblings for their country. Despite a satisfactory war drama overall, the film experiences pacing issues in the concluding moments and lacks the desired impact in its climax. Shortening the film could have improved its overall appeal. Nonetheless, “Pippa” remains a commendable war drama.