Movie Review: Mardaani 2
Producer- Aditya Chopra
Director- Gopi Puthran
Star Cast- Rani Mukerjee, Vishal Jethwa
Gripping and Topical Drama!
Shivani Shivaji Roy (Rani Mukerjee is back with a big bang after lying low for almost five years after Mardaani and locks horns with the devil incarnate, a young and remorseless serial killer (Vishal Jethwa) who is raping and murdering loud and brash young women, reminiscent of what Kamal Haasan did in Red Rose three decades ago. The feisty, fearless policewoman has switched cities, from Mumbai to Kota, but nothing else has perhaps changed. Shivani is still straight-arrow, fearless, standing up, being counted.
Puthran, who wrote Mardaani which was helmed by Pradeep Sarkar and has written and directed the sequel, uses another device to unsettle viewers. At several points in the film, Sunny blatantly winks at the audience and even addresses the camera. It sets out to establish a direct connection between the insane young brat on screen and us.
Rani is Rani and clearly is the hero. The men around her, a subordinate constable who badmouths her, a few loyal juniors, a senior who alternately backs her and scolds her, all have familiar beats. Rani fills the screen, and is in command right through as she works to a script which pushes her to the fore at every given chance. Rani scores with her gait, voice delivery and mannerism and steals the scene as the angry middle aged police officer, who just does not have show any mercy on the rapist.
The film’s antagonist Vishal Jethwa is a revelation and holds his own confidently against a powerhouse performer like Rani and is in fact the life of the movie, surprising you with every stealthy move of his. He looks innocent, but delivers quite a chilling and menacing performance for a debutant. He gets the rustic Rajasthani accent right, just enough to add terror.
To the credit of the debut making director Gopi Puthran, there is not a single song in the film which sets out to interrupt the sleek proceedings on. Also the film’s pace is relentless and adds to the thrill even as we see the villain constantly outsmarting the cops. Thankfully, the background score is subtle too.
To sum up, Mardaani 2 is definitely the kind of a brisk, slickly shot, and plays to the gallery with impunity but makes a gripping watch and what’s more, it is topical and does not set out to bore even for a minute, though it often makes you squirm in your seat with its sermon on the man woman divide and gender bias in society.
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