Aligarh Movie Review
Cast: Manoj Bajpayee, Rajkummar Rao, Ashish Vidyarthi, Sumit Gulati, Dilnaz Irani
Director: Hansal Mehta
Duration: 1 Hour 54 Minutes
Combined Ratings of All The Critics : 4/5
“Aligarh” goes on to explore the larger question of sexual orientation of different sorts which are stereotypically termed as “Unwarranted” in the societal sphere of Indian Republic. It brings forward the story of Professor Siras (Manoj Bajpayee) who happens to be a professor of linguistics at Aligarh Muslim University. Due to the ambience of its kind, he was compelled to fell like an outsider teaching Marathi to the AMU students.
In a significant turn of events, he was allegedly indicted with having sexual pleasure with a rikshawala and thus paved the way for uproar in and outside of the campus and was subsequently forced to go under suspension pending legal proceedings. At that juncture journalist Deepu Sebastian (Rajkummar Rao) enters into the spotlight to get Professor Siras vindicated from all the allegations.
Director Hansal Mehta has shown immense courage to portray a subject which may not find its takers among the masses. Not only did he show resilience and maturity in taking care of the sensitivity of the mater but he also ensured an enthralling performance from its lead actor’s viz. Manoj Bajpayee, Rajkummar Rao.
Indian Express : 3.5/5
An elderly professor at one of India’s once-of the most prestigious centres of higher learning is hounded out – of his job, and his humble abode — because of his sexual orientation. What happens to him makes up Hansal Mehta’s ‘Aligarh’. It is a film both timely and important, because of what it is about, and how it is told. Queer characters are not characters who just happen to be queer in most Bollywood movies. Read More...
NDTV : 4.5/5
Aligarh is equal parts a powerful character study, an incisive social commentary, a tragedy of harrowing proportions and a cautionary parable about a society rife with contradictions. The story, an introductory disclaimer asserts, is inspired by real events modified on the basis of related media reports and legal proceedings. The film is set in the months following the 2009 Delhi high court ruling that held Article 377 unconstitutional and decriminalized homosexuality - the verdict was overturned by the Supreme Court in 2013. Read More...
Times Of India : 4/5
While it is melancholic, the film doesn't resort to melodrama to evoke empathy. Aligarh's heart lies in the beauty of its silences and the unspoken words and unrushed emotions shared between its lead characters. While decriminalising homosexuality is an underlying message, the film essentially revolves around companionship and loneliness, reminiscent of Aparna Sen's masterpiece 36 Chowringhee Lane. Read More...
Hindustan Times : 4.5/5
Aligarh cooked up a storm even before its release as the censor board chief, Pahlaj Nihalani, rated the film and its trailer with an A certificate. His reasoning was that Aligarh was about homosexuality – a subject he deemed unfit for children. Having watched the film, we would like to tell Mr Nihalani that the film does not ‘promote’ homosexuality – it is about human rights, equality, right to privacy and the idea of democracy for all, obviously including homosexuals. Manoj plays a shy and lonely 64-year-old man who loves his job as a language teacher, spends his free time listening to old melodies of Lata Mangeshkar and sipping whiskey – a common man with simple ideas. Read More...
Bollywood Hungama : 3.5/5
ALIGARH boasts of a wonderful and heartfelt screenplay Apurva Asrani (who has also written the story). One has to give it to him for handling an extremely sensitive topic in the most sensible manner.
The film sees the no holds barred directorial prowess of Hansal Mehta, who has handled the film in an extremely skilful manner. Thanks to his direction, the film gets translated into a mixed bag of emotions such as fearless, captivating, moving and heart-breaking one. While the film has an extremely engaging first half, the second half sees the film losing its grip mainly due to its slow pace and starts looking disjointed. Many things remain unexplained which may confuse the audience. Read More...