Just when the talented Vikrant Massey was becoming typecast as the supportive husband in heroine-centric film he delivers an exceptional performance in an author-backed role as an IAS aspirant from the Chambal Valley who journeys from a failed student to a successful civil servant.
That this moving and inspiring film is based on true facts makes it all the more commendable. Vinod Chopra who has helmed a series of duds in recent years including the anaemic film on Kashmiri Pundits Shikara, directs this heartfelt homage to the never-say-die spirit with an unwavering sincerity.
This is Chopra’s best film in years. It is a motivational film but not swamped by its urge to make a statement. Shot in real locations the actors are well chosen, each furnishing a heft to his or her part without making it look like a favour to human kind.
Vikrant Massey anchors the moving motion picture. His body language as an aspiring civil servant from Chambal, and his expressions of hurt, anger, desperation and finally , triumph earns him the right to be counted among the great contemporary actors.
This majestically motivational emotion picture is not for the snarky sections of viewers. It is a feel-good film in every sense. Goodhearted characters jump of out of the dark desperate layers of poverty to light a candle in the wind for our hero . Early on there is long-time-no-see Priyanshu Chatterjee as an idealistic cop who bursts a exam scam and never looks back.
This may be too much goodness for the cynics to digest. For those of us who want cinema to offer a flickering diya on a moonless night, 12th Fail is the go-to movie that moves. It is an instant classic for its rich array of hopeful characters seeking salvation in a society that shuns the underdogs.