Mardaani film review

By Sayantan Dalal

Film: Mardaani

Cast: Rani Mukerji, Tahir Bhasin

Director: Pradeep Sarkar

Rating: ****

It's always a pleasure to watch a film that is confident in what it is. Teamed with writer Gopi Puthran, director Pradeep Sarkar's gruelling exposi of human trafficking in Mumbai, is a no-nonsense, hard hitting film thanks to a subtly nuanced script.

Mardaani's plot, constructed as a relentless and frightening thriller, stars Rani Mukerji in one of her best performances, portraying Mumbai crime branch cop Shivani Shivaji Roy investigating a human trafficking racket, who has heroism thrust upon her by the evidence of her own eyes. As a tough-talking, bruise-knuckled cop, Shivani lands far more blows than she sustains. Rani hits a home run in a role that allows her to jam within her comfort zone but also gives her the opportunity to expand her range and she's up to every challenge.

In her almost singlehanded investigation, Mukerji is often seen in scary situations, especially when she challenges mafia kingpin (played by Tahir Bhasin) to a 30 days cat and mouse chase. What makes it so effective is that Rani doesn't play her character as any species of action heroine, but simply as a competent, dutiful cop.

The good news is that the film, devoid of unnecessary song and dance sequences,concentrates on the important topic and clicks on all cylinders.Thanks to some standout performances from the lead and the supporting cast, a smart script and nimble direction from Pradeep Sarkar.The film would have been a master act if only the director had got rid of some lengthy boring monologues and filmy dialogues.

To watch or not to watch:

It's great when you reach the end of a modestly hyped movie and find yourself craving for a sequel instantly.Rani carries Mardaani and it's weighty subject single-handedly and definitely deserves a one-time watch.

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