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Review The Lunchbox aka Dabba (2013)

genre: drama, romance

The Lunchbox aka Dabba is an Indian movie and not your typical bollywood masala flick which is refreshing. What is even more wonderful about this one that it's a story about real people told in a real and sincere way. Most of what unfolds on screen is relatable and universal. The story is based on a lunch box delivery system of Mumbai where lunch boxes are collected from homes to be delivered to workplaces. It is said that it's most efficient as they rarely make mistakes. Which is quite extraordinary if you consider how many lunch boxes are being delivered and fetched. In this film a mistake is made though where a lunch box from Ila (Nimrat Kaur) gets delivered to Saajan Fernandes (Irrfan Khan) instead to her husband. When she finds out she starts writing to Saajan and he starts writing back. They connect and it is beautiful to see how that unfolds into something more. It starts out as a friendship that becomes more intimate where it is left upon the viewer to interpret of what this relationship is about. What I enjoyed immensely was that you see growth in the characters. Especially Saajan. The man seems like he has given up on almost everything. He is going through motions and does not really want to be among people that much. But because of the friendship with Ila he finds back his passion and slowly opens up again to her and the world. There is a hint of romance although I think this is more about connecting and a form of intimacy that friends can have without it being romantic and sexual. For me this was a beautiful tale without it ever getting over the top or dramatic. A must watch!

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