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“Critics are like eunuchs in a harem; they know how it’s done, they’ve seen it done every day, but they’re unable to do it themselves.” – Brendan Behan, With quotes out of the way, let’s dive into Imtiaz Ali’s latest cinematic offering, “Amar Singh Chamkila,  a film that promises to be as enticing as a drunk uncle at a family gathering As Brendan Behan eloquently puts it, critics may understand the art form, but translating that knowledge into successful execution is a different ballgame altogether. And unfortunately, “Amar Singh Chamkila” falls short of hitting the mark. The film tries to justify the existence of sexually explicit songs by claiming they are a part of Punjabi culture, much like the tradition of singing vulgar songs during weddings. By that logic, one could also make a case for legalizing public nudity, as it is a tradition in certain tribal cultures. Ali seems to have confused genuine cultural appreciation with a thinly veiled attempt to titillate the audience.

At the outset, one can’t help but applaud Ali for his fearless attempt to bring the gritty, grubby world of Punjabi pop-folk to the silver screen. After all, what could be more entertaining than a biopic about a singer who gained notoriety for lyrics that would make a sailor blush? However, Ali’s execution is about as graceful as a hippo performing ballet.

While the film does acknowledge the objectification of women in Chamkila’s songs, it conveniently glosses over the more pernicious effects of such content on societal attitudes toward women. It’s as if Ali says, “Hey, it’s just a bit of harmless fun, nothing to see here!”

The central character of Amar Singh Chamkila is about as compelling as a lukewarm cup of tea. He is a one-dimensional figure, devoid of any inner conflict or depth, who simply goes with the flow – singing bawdy songs when the public demands it and switching to religious hymns when his life is threatened. It’s as if Ali couldn’t decide whether he wanted to make a biopic or a music video compilation.

Moreover, the film fails to capture the socio-political landscape of Punjab during Chamkila’s time, reducing the Sikh separatist movement to a mere footnote. One can’t help but wonder if Ali was more interested in recreating the music videos than exploring the era’s complexities.

In the end, “Amar Singh Chamkila” is a cinematic equivalent of a forgotten mixtape—a collection of catchy tunes that may momentarily entertain but ultimately fails to leave a lasting impression. It’s a missed opportunity to delve into the nuances of Punjabi culture and the dynamics of art, entertainment, and societal norms.

So, unless you’re a die-hard fan of Chamkila’s music or have a burning desire to witness questionable lyrical choices set to vibrant visuals, you might want to skip this one and save your pennies for a filmmaker’s vault that truly deserves your immersion.

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