Based on the 2014 memoir written by Manmohan Singh’s media adviser Sanjaya Baru, the film with the same name ‘The Accidental Prime Minister’ released this week. Amidst a lot of controversies, this film aroused in the political world, the film successfully hit theatres and it claims to give the audience an inside look of the party and PMO (Prime Minister Office).
The Film is based on the influential family of the nation The Gandhians who according to Sanjaya Baru, rules the nation. The film, while brushing past some uncomfortably big scams like 2G and 3G, touches UPA governments big breakthroughs like the nuclear deal and Kashmir issue. It also shows the story of what went inside the Congress party and PMO while some of the biggest decisions of the UPA tenure were being made. Being an insider, Sanjay Baru seems to have brought the confidential processes of the political organization to the interest of the general public through his book and this movie is an on-screen interpretation of that.
It showcases the former president of Indian National Congress Suzanne Bernert as Sonia Gandhi as the undisputed commander of the Party. And the former Prime Minister is shown as her puppet, who does not question any of her decision, right or wrong.
All the characters are introduced in the opening scene of TV footage of 2014 when Congress won the Lok Sabha elections. They all look so similar to the real ones, look wise and behavior wise. But Anupam Kher took it to the next level to pull off one of the most challenging characters of his career. He had worked very hard to copy Singh every gesture, the way he walks, and the way he speaks.
As Kher once said that one will fall in love with Manmohan Singh, after watching the film, you can actually feel a soft corner for the mute Prime Minister. Seeing him struggle so hard not to rebel his own party or go against the party President.
On the other hand, Akshaye Khanna as Sanjaya Baru didn’t have to pretend, it was like seeing Baru narrating each and every incident himself, with so much ease. The script had very little to offer Aahana Kumra as Priyanka Gandhi, Arjun Mathur as Rahul Gandhi, present president of Indian National Congress, Divya Seth Shah as Manmohan Singh’s wife Gursharan Kaur, and others. But whatever the screen time they shared, they made it count.
However, the public part or the consequences of Singh’s action is very little in the film. Everything ends with newsroom debate and the newspaper headlines. ‘The Accidental Prime Minister’ is intense, complex and dark in proper proportion. The film is more entertaining than informative.