Cast: Priyanka Chopra, Farhan Akhtar, Zaira Wasim, Rohit Saraf, Brian Nathan
Director: Shonali Bose
Ratings: 3 stars (out of 5) By India Business Story
Movie Story Line
A terminally ill 14-year-old girl fleshed out with grace and confidence by Zaira Wasim, is at the centre of Shonali Bose’s The Sky Is Pink. But when the film starts, the character is already stagnant. Zaira isn’t, hence, the main star of the show.
Priyanka Chopra, making a comeback to Bollywood in the role of the girl’s stressed but always-in-control mom, is.
Priyanka Chopra presents the film a starry frame. Conversely, her glam persona manages to be at odds at times with the overall tone of the emotional drama.
What works in her favour outweighs what doesn’t by a whisker. That is good enough to make The Sky Is Pink a touching, tender portrait of a couple dealing with the responsibilities of raising a daughter whose days are numbered.
Four years after she is diagnosed with pneumonic fibrosis, a consequence of the bone-marrow transplant and chemotherapy sittings she felt like a child, the gifted Aisha (Zaira Wasim) loses her fight with death. But her essence exists on to describe the story of her own death and that of her progenitors, Aditi and Niren Chaudhary (Priyanka Chopra and Farhan Akhtar).
The future story device (a from-beyond-the-grave voiceover is always difficult but the director keeps a strong grip on it) makes it sufficiently obvious from the word go that the centre is working to be more on the bereaved couple than the late girl. Just as well. Aisha’s story is too well-documented to show routine in a two-and-a-half-hour film.
Relatively less is known about how Aisha’s slow withering away hit her mom and dad, Moose and Panda to her. Of the 25-odd years that the two have been coupled, 18 have been used by their single-minded purpose to extend the life of their sick daughter and make her final years as smiling and fulfilling as feasible. The girl’s uncertain situation needs a toll on the couple’s connection. That is from where the drama of The Sky Is Pink springs but without ever lapsing into overt sentimentality. It is a story about loss that is at once melancholic and life-affirming, observed through the eyes of the girl who is now away from the pale of illness and distress.
- The Sky Is Pink has to consider with an apparent lack. The audience is informed that the girl will die before she turns 19. The screenplay faces the challenge head-on, creating an affecting picture of a talented child who signs, paints and lives life to the lees helped along by a mother who will settle for nothing less than the best for her daughter. Bottling up her sentiments appears to come easy to Aditi. She loses her balance just once only to hop right back as death closes in on Aisha.
- The Sky Is Pinkis as much about the passionate toll of sustaining a life that stretches by a fine thread as about a relationship that is defined not to withdraw into a cartridge and wait fearfully for the inevitable.
- Death isn’t the conclusion. Nor is an imminent struggle a trigger for debilitating depression. Aditi and Niren’s deep understanding of grief and end is performed off on their brave settlement with their fortune.
- The first few shots of The Sky Is Pinkbuild the power of both loss and appearance. Aisha is left. A Labrador, a pet got not too long before her passing and now an essential part of a family in grief lies relaxed on her bare bed.
- A portrait of a bright butterfly – a dominant trope for the ephemerality of excellence – hangs on a wall, with Aisha’s name at the bottom of the case.
- In another room, Aditi (Priyanka Chopra) and Niren (Farhan Akhtar), Aisha’s progenitors, sleep with their backs to each different. The girl’s passing has certainly produced avoid, but the atmosphere of her appearance – ironically rooted in her constant lack – is very strong around the residence.
- The narrative tone – inspired and comfortable while being emotionally loaded – is in sync with what the film is showcasing – a couple’s stoic act of getting to times with, and tiding over a misfortune.
- It is a counterpoint to the melancholy air that executes over the family in the opening displays and all through the couple’s attempts to give their child the best possible approach.
- It is a tough ask because Aditi and Niren, who have already endured the loss of their first-born, a girl with the same medical condition as Aisha’s, do not have the means to fund a life-saving operation in London.
- An application on a South Asian radio show helps them raise more extra than double the amount they need – money moving in from Indians, Pakistanis, Bangladeshis, Afghans and others.
- In a short but defining moment, as Niren pauses outside the Great Ormond Street Hospital, a London cabbie, ignorant of the father’s identity, hands him an enclosure with a five pound-sterling note, a small donation for the surgery. The kindness of outsiders guarantees that Aisha, unlike the sister she never saw, will have a decent shot at life.
- After the operation, the six-month-old is advised continued healing attention in the UK. For the benefit of their child, Aditi and Niren are forced to live apart – the past by her daughter’s side, the latter in Delhi to continue on to a corporate career.
- Flashbacks reveal the years of the couple’s love beyond a sharp cultural divide – Aditi is from South Delhi, Niren from the Chandni Chowk – and, post-marriage, their trivial attempting to save their first daughter, Tanya.
- In the first assortment of penetrations that Aisha presents into the surviving portions of her family, she makes on that “19 years after two children their sex life was darkened”.
- When Aditi considers her third baby, Niren, who now makes enough to afford a cloth, sitting Delhi house with a swimming pool, suggests an abnormality.
- Aware of the especially rare hereditary disease that the couple has, he dreads the possibility of the birth of another child with severe mixed immunodeficiency.
- Aditi, who has welcomed Christians following a mystical reality, declines to end her pregnancy. They go ahead knowing the results.
- If at all, The Sky Is Pink, scripted by Bose with Nilesh Maniyar, blunders on the side of sustained cheeriness, improved appreciably by the behaviour of Chopra in the role of a mother who puts her career on the clutch and works determinedly to take care of Aisha.
- Akhtar, chosen as the sedate entrepreneur-father who attains by his wife like a rock notwithstanding specific matrimonial blips and works away (off-screen) to pull his family out of middle-class want and into a corporate manager job-fuelled success, contributes the ideal foil to the poised Chopra. Rohit Saraf, playing Aisha’s elder brother Ishaan, gives a solid account of himself.
- However ‘The Sky is Pink’ not your typical tear-jerking ride. The story and talks in the movie do a good balancing act of having some strong fiery scenes light-hearted, with a quirky touch.
- Aditi and Niren’s love story add some natural fun minutes and so does their overall chemistry as a pair, which is presently the soul of the film. And the sensitively dealt with moments add their heft to the heartfelt journey that the family goes through together.
- But as different characters of Aisha, Aditi and Niren’s memoirs find their way into the story, the pace decreases, making it a long watch. In fact, one needs the screenplay was more focused and some parts are given more breathing time and searched into longer.
- However, the touching curve and the heavenly acts will keep you spent. Priyanka Chopra is exceptional as Aditi, a mom decided to the point of being possessed with getting her child live life to the most lavish. Her sorrow and grief are obvious in every display as her character plan crosses over two decades.
- Farhan Akhtar as Niren also picks off an excellent play as the supportive spouse and the father whose passions are not always on display but is breaking away anyway.
- There is an amazing control in his act. Zaira Wasim blows life into every second she is on screen, with her vigorous spirit attaching the much required emotional touch to her character.
‘The Sky is Pink’ is definitely a stimulating watch as your heart covers out to the Chaudhary family and their enthusiasm for making every millisecond count, notwithstanding the trying times they go through. This one scores high on the sentimental quotient.