We might have had to wait two extra weeks for Akshay Kumar’s Pad Man to release but we have to say the time has been worth it. Pad Man is sure going to shine at the box office but along with it, the R Balki directorial will also spread social awareness about menstrual hygiene in India. The movie is about a village-man who invents the machine that mass produces affordable sanitary napkins for women. The movie opened in theatres today and the first reviews are out. The movie is getting mixed reactions from the critics. Here is what the best of the best are saying about Pad Man.
The Guardian, in their 4-star review, wrote, “This good-natured, big-hearted film from India puts a romantic topspin on a true story. ”
DNA praises Akshay Kumar and R Balki in their 4.5-star review. “Balki who is known for turning things on its head has done it again with Pad Man. While the subject itself lends to it, the story telling is what makes the difference. An awkward and taboo subject has been dealt with sensitivity and even humour. However, the film does get preachy at points, and slows it down,” they said.
Despite giving two stars to the movie, The Indian Express seems impressed by Akshay Kumar. “Akshay gets fully into the role while trying to get in touch with the ‘feminine’ side of him, with some nice strokes: he is the film, in a sense, and he is both earnest and likeable enough, even if he is in familiar do-good mode, and even if we wish his women looked his age. And, even more crucially, that PadMan paid as much attention to its medium as its message.” they said.
The Hindu calls Pad Man a ‘public service cinema’. “Balki doesn’t know how he wants to tackle the story — at times his treatment is like the public service advertising of I&B ministry’s Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity (DAVP), merely expanding on the real-life incidents without any flair or imagination,” they wrote, and concluded, “Pad Man is an example of how good causes may not always make great cinema,”.
Though Live Mint disagrees on that note. They write, “At first it seemed R. Balki and Swanand Kirkire’s script was going to lean on delivering a long public service message. Fortunately, the domestic drama, between a traditional wife and her concerned husband, takes a pause and the film hits it stride when it explores and presents how Lakshmikant becomes the inventor of the low-cost sanitary pad.” Clearly, the perception of the film is polar opposite. “Padman is sanitised and sweet, and its message is not just to encourage the use of sanitary pads, but that with the right motivation, imagination and a whole lot of patience you can solve problems with ingenuity.” they concluded.
BollywoodLife wrote, “Both Balki and Akshay ensure that the film, despite its serious subject, never becomes tedious or boring for its audience. The writing and conception of every scene has a lot of thought put into it.” In our 4 star review, we summed up the movie by noting, “Pad Man deserves a special mention simply because it got made. A subject that’s hushed up even in urban India got a mainstream treatment by a popular actor-director team. And that itself is a reason why a film like this deserves extra attention.”
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