• aastha gupta

The Inspiring one- Film “Chippa”

Cast: Sunny Pawar, Joyraj Bhattacharya, Sumeet Thakur, Gautam Sarkar, Masood Akhtar, Kalpan Mitra

Writer and Director: Safdar Rahman

Stills from the film “Chippa.” Photo: YouTube



Not that I don’t consider myself a kid anymore (*Enormous smile on my face*) but let’s face the reality, I am not. As we grow, so do our complexities of life, relationships, understandings, and emotions. I look at kids and I get this weird longing to be a child again. That feeling of always playing around, crying without having to share a reason, being fed and cared for by mothers and not caring what the next day will bring upon. It’s such a magical time when everything around you is speaking out its first introductory speech to you, like “Hey, I am a wall, and look I am a chair and you sit on me”. I wish to look at the world again but for the first time.

While running around on the gloomy streets of the City of joy, I see him as a lost piece of a puzzle who is trying hard to fit himself somewhere, he just doesn't know where.

Coming back to the present, I would like to thank a recent film I watched which brought back all these nostalgic memories to me. “Chippa” is a film about a ten-year-old boy who lives on the crowded streets of Kolkata with his grand-aunt, who runs a small food-stall. She’s always scolding him for not helping her out enough. Then one day, Chippa (Sunny Pawar) receives a letter from his absent father on his tenth birthday. He’s escalated, but the only hurdle is that the letter is in Urdu. This gives him a reason to run away and look for anyone who could read his father’s letter to him.

Stills from the film “Chippa.” Photo: YouTube

He meets many people on his journey, like auto-drivers, a policeman, an old man, and to every person he encounters on the streets his only question is if they know Urdu. Like a small child who has just walked into the actual world, he asks people about their work, their dreams, and even how much money they make, which is a funny question coming from a child. His dreams change with every person he meets, one moment he wishes to be a taxi driver, the next he wants to play sports. So, just like that, he switches his dreams but never stops dreaming.

It’s a heart-warming, innocent film shown from a child’s point of view of how he perceives the world around him. He’s running on the streets at night in the backdrop of aggressive political rallies, migrants, and construction laborers working when the entire city sleeps and drunken alcoholics completely drown in their sorrows. There’s so much sincerity and warmth in this ten-year-old kid that to stay away from his La-la land is just impossible.

Stills from the film “Chippa.” Photo: YouTube

While running around on the gloomy streets of the City of joy, I see him as a lost piece of a puzzle who is trying hard to fit himself somewhere, he just doesn't know where. There’s a scene at the beginning of the film where the taxi-driver says to Chippa, “There are two kinds of people in this world. Those who detest their jobs and those who do it with a smile.” The casual utterance of these words reminds me of how important it is to cherish the things we have. Sometimes, amid the cat-race we all are a part of, we forget to relax, sit back and smile for all the things we are still doing and have. The end destination becomes so overpowering that all the surrounding things are mere blind-spots to us.

In one scene, he (Chippa) brings out a vast difference between realistic dreams and fantasies. As a child, he doesn’t shy away from accepting the harsh reality of his fate. He knows his future and yet he strongly believes in the word “trying” and which is why till the end he continues to search for a person who could read his father’s letter to him.

This story is like a reminder to breathe in the journey we all are in, to nourish ourselves with positivity and a giant Joker-like smile as we don’t always need to run to reach the destination. One could walk and still be on time.

Watch it on Netflix.

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