Release Date: December 3, 2021
Star Cast: Amberdeep Singh, Nimrat Khaira, Karamjit Anmol, B.N. Sharma, Nirmal Rishi, Gurpreet Kaur Bhangu, Hardeep Gill, Balwinder Bullet, Sukhwinder Raj, Raj Dhaliwal, Gurteg Singh and Inderjot Brar.
Guest Appearance: Bjayy Randhawa, Aditi Dev Sharma, Anita Devgan
Writer & Director: Amberdeep Singh
Producer: Amberdeep Singh and Ashu Munish Sahni
DOP: Sandeep Patil
Music & Background Score: Shah an Shah Music (Chandan song): Black Virus
There was a lot of hype around the film so I thought of watching it. The film feels like it is related to farmers, the promotions were also done in such a manner. In the beginning itself, there is a song in which you can hear the issues related to audio. This is a continuous mistake in the film but there are technical issues in the audio throughout the film.
Secondly, Amberdeep, who is the writer, director and also acting in the film. His dialogue delivery is not up to par, the speed at which Amber speaks is so fast that one can’t understand some of the dialogues in between! What surprises me is that Amber wasn’t guided or even asked to improve during the dubbing by the sound engineer or even when the post-production was being done.
Moreover, the pace of the film is painstakingly slow so much so that the viewer is confused as to what they are trying to show since there are so many sub-plots that one gets lost in the story (not in a good way). This results in the story mixing while the viewer keeps trying to connect back to the events in the story.
Next, Aditi Dev Sharma, who makes an appearance in the film, is a well-experienced actor. But when you hear Aditi’s dubbing, the first thought that you get is the Shehnaaz Gill similarity and then later you actually hear the actress. So the shift in her dubbing was not required according to me, it was disturbing.
Then, once you are like there is nothing more in the film, they show you duos of Karamjit Anmol and Hardeep Gill. Now this pairing has a jugalbandi of comedy going on between themselves which sparks emotion and hope in you that the film is worth it. But sadly, till the end this feeling also passes away and it feels like you’ve been betrayed as what the duo did feels like a one-time thing. Other than this, you also see Bjayy Randhawa in the film. Bjayy had gained a huge audience after his film ‘Shooter’ and is on a high note in his career. However, the role given to Bjayy is of an alcoholic and in that too the character isn’t as fun and fulfilling as one would expect.
Talking about Amberdeep, his dialogue delivery was a sore point as aforementioned but then the next big problem was that no scene was given enough time to process, for example, in a scene where the audience could cry, or a scene where the son is leaving his mother or a scene where you could literally roll off laughing… all those scenes were missed opportunity due to the lack of emotion. The reason this happens is either because Amberdeep couldn’t direct himself properly or maybe the scenes weren’t planned beforehand.
Most people in the industry or those who follow him know that this is Amberdeep’s style— playing around with scenes on set or impromptu writing. So maybe the initial idea was something else but it became different when Amber got on set and felt the need to change the direction. Another fault was that if your character is a typical Pendu boy, who is surviving on minimal needs, the actor’s clothes, hair and even makeup shouldn’t be so prim and proper, because the look makes the audience feel disconnected to the backstory of the character. So the emotions were not proper already and in addition the fresh look, made Amber’s character look even more fake!
There was also a moment where a song comes in and talks related to the farmers’ protest comes in, the essence of the song was that, Karamjit Anmol, Hardeep Gill and Raj Dhaliwal enter as corporators trying to take over the farmers lands and making the farmers prisoners who work for corporate, but then at one point they are wearing ties and id cards and they are dancing. This scene was completely irrelevant and made me feel like ‘ah ki paa ta viche yaar’. Similar thoughts were going on during the actual farmers protest, but the visual representation in the film felt like a disrespect to the original idea. So the way this thought was visualized in the film felt shallow.
Moving on, when we think about Amberdeep’s films or Amber and Ammy Virk’s films, the best parts of these films are their songs but in this film, there isn’t one song which is worth remembering or even relistening! There is a song during the latter half of the fim ‘Je Jatt Vigad Gaya’ and then it hits you… this film was originally called ‘Je Jatt Vigad Gaya’ and the poster was of Amber sitting on a jeep with a turban. Then you start co-relating that this film’s name was changed to ‘Teeja Punjab’ but why? Because the film doesn’t justify the title. Also, the film is nowhere near the expectations of the audience and even the shots from the actual protest are blurred.
If we look at camerawork, most of the shots are out-of-focus as the camera is focusing on the person next to the one it is required to. Next, it is important for me to say that all the actors in the film—Karamjit Anmol, B.N. Sharma, Aditi Sharma, Nirmal Rishi, Gurpreet Kaur Bhangu— all of them have been wasted in the film. Why do I say this? Because all these actors have such huge potential that when they are under-utilized with side roles, it doesn’t sit right with a person like me. These people aren’t made for such small roles, anyone could have acted in these.
Coming to the good part, one character, Bishna is so cute. The little one did his role well, instead of looking here and there like other children, his acting was commendable. Then the one-liners Amber has just might crack you up sometimes but mostly it feels like the emotion of the scene and the one-liner doesn’t match.
Now, if you have seen the film, you might relate with me that the message of the film is unclear. The end product was all mixed up, the film was directionless and went haywire. It tried to touch all different aspects be it brotherly love, house fights, materialistic women, the farmers' protest, village fights, land-related issues. So because there was so much no one message stood up clearly. The saddest part is that the film couldn’t provide justice to even one of these themes.
At the end, there is one scene that is action-packed. In that, the costumes were such that the actors were literally dripping with sweat which made me thing, the production could’ve switched on some fans atleast. So if we talk about the production value of the film, everyone’s clothes were literally soaked which felt irritating after all it is a film!
Except this, I have a request for Bjayy Randhawa that it is after a lot of hard work you have created a place for yourself in the industry and I agree that it is very difficult to sustain this position but by choosing such roles you yourelf bring down your market value. I think that through Bjayy’s character, Amberdeep tried to portray the side of the farmer’s protest which was the loud and aggressive youth. But the audience couldn’t relate to it because Bjayy is not someone who should be doing such roles. This is my suggestion to Bjayy, you can always choose to ignore it.
Last but not the least, the most important thing is Nimrat is such an actress who doesn’t get correct roles. This point is only proven correct through thi film because the only factor that one would watch this film is Nimra’s character. She was so strong throughout the film that she carried it the whole time! And I do not say this because she is beautiful, it is the opposite. Nimrat’s character in the film wasn’t glamorous at all! It had basic make-up and even the imperfections were visible, which was actually brilliant. The way she delivered her dialogues and her portrayal of the role, mind-blowing, it was superb! And after such films, I feel that yes, I should do such reviews more often because at least it makes me aware of the actor’s potential.
So I think that instead of bringing in Bollywood divas and conditioning them, Punjabi film producers should pick up more homegrown girls because there is a lot of potential in the girls here, we just lack at exploring it. Anyways, if you are an Amberdeep or Nimrat Khaira fan, you can watch this film but if you want to watch a good Punjabi film, I suggest waiting for another one. Lastly, the film as we can say ‘vikhar gayi’ and didn’t have a centre point to it. It proved useless and my time and money have been wasted on this film. This is my review and the others are always free to disagree.