Sardar Udham

Sardar Udham ★★★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

The life of Sardar Udham Singh, a revolutionary freedom fighter best known for assassinating Michael O'Dwyer in London to take revenge for 1919 Jallianwala Bagh massacre in Amritsar.

The Jallianwala Bagh massacre which is scribbled all over India’s history books goes way deeper than the text on the pages. The incident is soaked in a blood bath of innocent civilians whose trauma still screams every time you walk down the roads of Amritsar. The mayhem caused still haunts the soul of every Indian and watching Amazon Prime’s Sardar Udham was a soul call to look more carefully into our past and appreciate the heroes whose songs have quietened over the years.

Based on the life of the revolutionary freedom fighter Udham Singh, the film walks us down the dingy lanes of India struggling for the basic right to exist as an independent nation. Shaheed Sardar Udham Singh is globally known for his act of assassinating Sir Michael O’Dwyer who endorsed Reginald Dyer to open fire at the peaceful gathering at the Jallianwala Bagh that took the life of hundreds of Indians and was one of the most instrumental factors to instigate India’s fight for Independence. The assassination of Sir Dwyer was symbolic of exacting revenge for all the innocent people who lost their lives during the Jallianwala Bagh massacre.

This bibliographical film shows us the life of Udham Singh: his time during the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, his comradeship with Shaheed Bhagat Singh, the time he spent in London gathering support and building relationships with other communist comrades, the assassination and his subsequent sentencing and time in prison. The story is told in a non-linear format with flashbacks being used to depict the emotional and factual side of the story.

Sardar Udham emotionally triggers the sleeping patriotism in everyone’s hearts and paints the idea of revolution boldly across our screens. This film pays a beautiful homage to the brave Sardar who not only single-handedly fought for the nation’s Independence but, also put across the concept of a secular India by naming himself Ram Mohammad Singh Azad while in custody. The dialogues spread across the film really touches you teamed up with cinematography that is just perfect in its way of telling the tale.

The charm of Vicky Kaushal is not unknown to the audience but, playing a character as real and quintessential as Shaheed Sardar Udham Singh definitely puts one under some considerable amount of pressure.The undeterred mission of Sardar Udham reflects in the eyes of Kaushal as he leads the film, just the way Udham Singh led his act of revolution. In his own way, he is awed like a little boy by the speech to differentiate an act of revolution from terrorism by the character of Bhagat Singh (played by Amol Parashar), and then again stands strong and undefeated by the painful way he is treated in the prison at London prison. It is yet again a delight to watch Vicky Kaushal on screen and this time he makes us feel rather proud by brilliantly putting across the message and character of Udham Singh to the audience.

More than the Jallianwala Bagh massacre of 1919 and the events that stemmed from it, Sardar Udham is also a reflective journey inside the heart of every helpless Indian under the British empire wanting to break away from the shackles that restricted them from being free. If this doesn't move you to the core and makes you thank the countless sacrifices that have gone for gaining your independence, I don't know what will.

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