Dark, ruthless and completely fabulous - Badlapur!
Movie - Badlapur
Cast - Varun Dhawan, Nawazzuddin Siddiqui, Yami Gautam, Huma Qureshi, Divya Dutta and Radhika Apte
Director - Sriram Raghavan
Rating - ***1/2
What the movie is about:
The film starts with a busy street in Pune where a bank robbery gone wrong results in the death of Misha (Yami Gautam) and her young son Robin by the hands of the theif Liak (Nawazzuddin Siddiqui) and his partner in crime Harman (Vinay Pathak). Misha's husband Raghav, fondly called Raghu (Varun Dhawan) is an advertising executive whose life shatters at the loss of his family. Liak tells Harman to escape but is himself caught by the police. Raghu tries hard to find Harman and seek his revenge. He meets a prostitute Jhimli (Huma Qureshi) to get a lead on the escaped criminal but does not succeed. Liak has been sentenced to 20 years in prison while Raghu goes into seclusion in a small town called Badlapur. 15 years later Liak is to be released and Raghu, who is still looking for his revenge confronts him and many others in the process including a social worker Shobha (Divya Dutta) and Harman along with his wife Kanchan (Radhika Apte). The story then proceeds on a dark journey that Raghu takes to avenge his family and find himself again.
What we think:
The movie as we all know is about vengeance and the storyline has been brilliantly crafted around it with interesting unpredictable turns in between. Shreedhar Raghavan has done a very good job of writing the screenplay and taking it from a generic revenge story to a tale that is much more deep and leaves a strong impact on you.
Varun Dhawan deserves a standing ovation for showing his immense potential after doing 3 rom-coms. The actor whom we pegged as the boy-next-door has now become the angry young man. In the trailer of the movie we got an idea of the intensity of Varun's character Raghu but it is so much more fierce when we see the film. His role is dark and voilent in the movie and Varun portray's it with utmost sincerity. To play the character of a rough 40 year old, he uses his fanatical eyes with an impassionate and blank expression on his face. There are several bouts of rage that we can see in him but Varun's stoic demeanor gave a subtle depth to his character. The scene where his character Raghu is in shock because of his family's death is so powerful that his supressed anger and grief brings tears to your eyes. Surely female fans were a little disappointed when we saw that Varun is not going to be in his general lover-boy image but there are absolutely no complaints after watching him in a role when in which he no doubt poured his heart and soul.
Nawazzuddin Siddiqui has proved to the industry once again that he was wasted in side roles for the long stretch he was stuck in them. Even being the bad guy in the start, he has the audience laughing at his witty and maniacal character. His part of Liak is someone you will hate but also side with because of his antics and unexpected emotions that surface in the film escpecially towards the climax.
The women in the movie may not have much screen time but they have surely made their presence felt with their powerpacked performances. Starting with Yami Gautam who has, what could be best called, a cameo role is the quintessential victim in the role of Varun's wife. The story moves on to Huma Qureshi who is a prostitute in the movie. Huma's interaction is limited to Varun and Nawaz in the film and her chemistry with both of them comes off as effortless. Huma and Nawaz's characters recreate the Gangs Of Wasseypur magic for the few moments where the actress is seen in the movie. The third lady in the movie is Divya Dutta who being a seasonal actress is quite good in her small role of the social worker. She and Varun share a couple of intimate moments in the movie and even with the age difference they are both quite convincing in their parts. Bollywood newbie Radhika Apte has done a commendable job in the film. She plays the second innocent victim who pays for someone else's mistake but surely the actress has left her stamp in the movie through her pivotal character.
Sachin-Jigar gave exceptional music to the thriller and everybody is already into the tracks Jee Karda and Jeena Jeena. The fascinating background score giving goosebumps to the audience is perfectly placed and is complimentary to the storyline.
Sriram Raghavan can be called an expert in noir films now. After giving us films like Ek Hasina Thi and Johnny Gaddaar, he has come up with another movie which is hard, real and unflinchingly dark. He shows the the truth of a human being and the thinking one has, the problems one faces and the choices they then make. In both these previous movies he has shown us that everybody has a grey side, the good guys too. Raghavan continues his theme once again and blurs the line between the right and wrong as he creates an intriguing web of his tale in Badlapur where the hero makes the bad descisions and the noted villain makes us laugh. This blend of traits of his characters along with the ruthless reality shown to the audience in the perfect shadowy setting makes him a great director.
Varun Dhawan fans should definitely see this movie to know the true potential of the actor in this versatile which he portrays exceptionally well. If you want to see a specimen of a hardcore story with tough characters and talented actors exploring their boudless talent then you should not miss this movie.
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