Film Review: Poorna

At 13 years, one is just about old enough to learn about the Himalayas, notably its tallest peak Mount Everest. On 25 May 2014, Malavath Poorna, the impoverished daughter of poor and illiterate Adivasi village-folk in Telengana, became the youngest female to ascend the famed peak.

In his second directorial effort (Everybody Says I’m Fine, 2001), the largely reclusive Rahul Bose has undertaken this biopic of ‘Poorna’ (played by Aditi Inamdar) who starts off with school expeditions of rock-climbing to stand atop the world’s highest point.

Some of the tender and touching moments in the film are when Poorna and her cousin Priya (S. Mariya) indulge in banter pertaining to their poverty or when Poorna is made to return her shoes after an expedition.

Rahul Bose as Dr. R.S. Praveen Kumar, senior police official, who proves to be a father figure and a mentor to Poorna, underplays his role to perfection, while Poorna’s grit and gumption is brought out evocatively by newcomer Inamdar.  S. Mariya too, in her debut role, acts well.  Of the supporting cast, Dhritiman Chatterjee as Alexander, and Harsha Vardhan as Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister have little screen time.

Salim-Suleiman’s background score is appropriate while the songs are an unwelcome addition to the film.

Leave a Reply