While it may have lost its vantage position to the foreign locales on account of the insurgency problems, whenever some directors have dared to use Kashmir as the backdrop for a film, the results have been fantastic. As a matter of act right from the time when it was discovered with KASHMIR KI KALI in a big way, the charm of Kashmir continues to endear. SIKANDAR is one more attempt in this direction. After all, what Shah Jehan the famous Mughal Emperor had said about Kashmir as being the heaven on earth continues to be re-emphasized again and again through various Hindi films. The last attempt in this direction was that made by Santosh Sivan through TAHAAN, and now with SIKANDAR, Piyush Jha has tried to give it a different direction.
SIKANDAR marks the return of two child stars Parzan Dastur the cute sardar from KUCH KUCH HOTA HAI and Ayesha Kapur of the BLACK fame after a long hiatus and is a story of a childhood caught in the cross fire of terrorism trying to come to terms with it in own manner as a childhood normally does. Interestingly enough the last film on Kashmir TAHAAN was also a take on Kashmir through the eyes of a child.
Interestingly enough the Kashmir of SIKANDAR is not the Kashmir that has been projected through ages, a Kashmir of snow and peaks clad with snow, but is a Kashmir that is a new identity when the spring sets in, when the purple flowers of saffron bloom and the women of Kashmir come out in their finery to welcome the spring and revisit the folk of their culture. It is not white but green that dominates SIKANDAR, green of hope of a fresh approach to a stale subject, green of invitation to experience Kashmir in a new flavour.
SIKANDAR is also interesting owing to the fact that here sports is also enmeshed in the subject, that is aspirations of a boy from Kashmir who also wants to play but is not able to do so owing to the disturb state of affairs in his state, or the fact that his parents may not support his initiative to play for India. As a matter of fact an incident like this has already happened. There is a Kashmiri fast bowler who wants to play for country but cannot play as his parents support militants, and he does not know how to reconcile to this fact. May be when SIKANDAR when it is released could provide a new direction to the manner in which the issue of militancy can be tackled.