Aasman Se Aagehttps://indianexpress.com/article/entertainment/movie-review/aasman-se-aage/

Aasman Se Aage

Meenaxi is among the millions who feel that an opportunity to be on a dance reality show can change her life and pull her..

Reality Bytes

Meenaxi is among the millions who feel that an opportunity to be on a dance reality show can change her life and pull her family out of poverty. Relegated to the life of a cleaner at a mall,the girl from a slum in Mumbai,is the breadwinner of the household,which comprises five siblings and a widowed mother,Malti. This is her life,until she auditions for a reality show and gets lucky,despite her mother’s reservations. However,it isn’t her talent that gets her through,but the show’s producer,Dev Chopra aka DC,who views her life story as a tool to bag TRPs. During the journey,Meenaxi makes both friends (in Akshat and Angad) and foes (in Karishma). The show,therefore,aims to unravel the murky politics of reality shows behind the glamourous front visible to the audience.

The show,which premiered on April 23,brings back several known television faces. The dishy Apurva Agnihotri plays the cunning DC. Mouli Ganguly as Roshni is his colleague and protege — although with some conscience. Brothers Angad and Akshat are played by Siddhant Karnick and Aham Sharma,respectively. Manini De is also a part of the show but her character is yet to be unveiled. Ojaswi Oberoi plays the naive protagonist Meenaxi who dares to dream big. Adding colour to the lot is Karishma,who is forced to pursue the dreams that her pushy mother Vinita (Sheela Sharma) has for her.

The show pays attention to nuances of the world being explored. The pass to the final auditions are called Cut-the-queue Cards. The scenes of the slums where Meenaxi lives,have been shot on location with real people. The makers have spent the first three episodes establishing the characters,which are not all black or white. For example,the equation between the siblings is interesting — inseparable otherwise,a pampered Angad is highly competitive even with his own brother. Karishma may be the victim of her mother’s ambitions but is also opportunistic and biased at the same time.

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Meenaxi and her sisters have been brought up in the city. They live in the slums but have clearly had a minimum education and exposure to the world. While they otherwise speak without an accent,their pronunciation of English words is too clichéd. ‘Thank you’ is mouthed as ‘thankoo’,‘please’ is ‘pleej’ and ‘school’ is ‘sakool’. These pronunciations are inconsistent and Meenaxi’s sister,in one scene,pronounces ‘fantastic’ as it should be said. Meenaxi’s character is that of a damsel-in-distress. The consistent frown on her face and tears in her eyes make her look like Anandi of Balika Vadhu,which does get annoying for the viewer. Also,if the show is set in the world of dance reality shows,the actors’ dance moves need to improve. Lest,the viewer switch to the real dance reality shows on other channels.

Verdict: Aasman Se Aage offers a Madhur Bhandarkar-esque view of reality shows and is somewhat moralistic in its approach,panning the TRP-centric obsession of TV producers. It will be interesting to watch if the makers don’t fall for the same trap.

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