Director Major Ravi echoes the soliloquy of each soldier--the futility of war, in "1971 Beyond Borders". War initiates pangs and sustains the impact of its brutality in a soldier and his family. Capitalising on Mohanlal's famous army character Major Mahadevan (here his father Major Sahadevan hogs the limelight), he exposes how a war affects soldiers emotionally. Most of the soldiers we come across in the film are emotionally bound to their personal lives even though they are on the fierce battlefield.
The plot is set in the backdrop of Indo-Pak war in 1971. In Georgia, Major Mahadevan (Mohanlal), who is now working for the UN peace mission, bumps into Major Ajmal Raja from Pakistan and this meeting leads us to Major Sahadevan, father of Major Mahadevan. Now Major Sahadevan has a reason to pay homage to Lieutenant Akram Raja of Pakistan on every December 17. The flashback scenes reveal about the two souls in both sides, who fight with a heart full of pathos and compassion. Ultimately, the soldier who earns respect from his opposition here for his bravery, compassion and courtesy has been projected as a true warrior.
Beginning with the voice-over of Mammootty, the movie's screenplay focuses on the humanity on the war-front as well as the nostalgia that binds human relations.
The personal life of Lieutenant Chinmay (Allu Sirish), Sahadevan's memories about his family and the wait for letters buttress the emotional part of the film. Quite often, the stunning visuals of Sujith Vassudev nullify the chinks in the screenplay. Meanwhile, the amazing war scenes reiterate the director's expertise in the army and the visuals aptly support the plot.
If Wilfred Owen's poem "Strange Meeting" describes the meeting of two dead soldiers, who lament the inane purpose of war, Major Sahadevan blames the people in power for erupting a war. He stands for peace with the neighbouring nation.
While Mohanlal is at ease in his dual role, female characters have little significance in the story.
"1971 Beyond Borders" has all the traits of Major Ravi's 'army films'. This war drama is an emotional tribute of a patriotic soldier-turned-filmmaker to all jawans who lost their lives for their motherland.
1971 - Beyond Borders Video Review
WHAT THE RATINGS MEAN:
0.0 - 1.4 : Poor
1.5 - 1.7: Poor, A Few Good Parts
1.8 - 2.3: Average
2.4 - 2.9: Fairly Good
3.0 - 3.4: Good
3.5 - 5.0: Very Good