After a hilarious meet-cute between a young Raj Batra (Irrfan Khan) and his wife-to-be Mita (Saba Qamar), Hindi Medium fast-forwards to the now-married middle-class couple’s attempts to get their five-year-old daughter Pia (Dishita Sehgal) into an elite private school.
The parents are desperate to change Pia’s fate, but their social background holds them back. The plot focuses on the interactions and struggles between Raj and Mita, and Khan and Qamar’s excellent chemistry and exceptionally natural acting quickly immerse the audience in the drama.
The characters’ emotions and behaviour are often dramatised for comedic effects, but they seldom feel extra or awkward, and regularly caused waves of laughter throughout the cinema.
Comparing education to a business, and school places as commodities, the film does an excellent job of capturing not only India’s extremely competitive and corrupted education system, but also how language divides the society, leading to social inequality. It's a theme that isn't so far from what many parents face in Hong Kong.
Unlike many dance-song-heavy Bollywood productions, the movie does not offer much in the way of aural and visual stimulation. However, the wonderfully uplifting performance of Ek Jindari by the child actors will melt your heart.
Hindi Medium might not be as amusing or emotionally stirring as Three Idiots, a blockbuster of a similar theme, but the delightful and thought-provoking story in this well-knit drama is definitely worth your time.