Kahaani 2 was a much awaited film because well…for obvious reasons! The first one was so well made and had built so many expectations!
To me this film did live up to those for a single reason – the very strong base of the story! It is a serious topic which unfortunately till now has been discussed only behind closed doors, in hushed tones, if at all! And the blame most often laid on the innocent, unsuspecting victims who carry the burden of that guilt and shame their entire lives!
Well, kudos to the director Sujoy Ghosh for exploring such a topic with sensitivity, yet boldness. To build a thriller around such a topic took some guts. Madhur Bhandarkar had touched upon the topic in his “Page 3” many years ago, but then he has always been ahead of his times! Kudos to the story writers Sujoy Ghosh and Suresh Nair for coming up with this idea. To take a very successful franchise and build a story with it with a social message too – commendable!
Kudos most of all to Vidya Balan! She has always been unconventional in every department and yet done reasonably well in Hindi mainstream cinema – unconventional good looks, unconventional figure, unconventional choice of films, but powerhouse performances every single time! I can think of a few other actresses who would’ve pulled off the role well, but she is simply amazing! And the gamut of emotions she displays – from a loving mother, to a helpless accident victim to a fiercely protective mother ( the name Durga – so apt – ready to fight injustice and slay the demons!)
Yes – it does not offer the edge-of-the-seat suspense as Kahaani; yes – it is totally predictable in the second half; yes – there are quite a few loose ends in the storyline; yes – it is dark and gory in places. But for me there were two stars in this film – the story and Vidya Balan. And they, I think, outshone all the flaws of the film.
Another surprise and hence designed-to-shock element of the film is Jugal Hansraj in the negative role. Yes – the Jugal Hansraj of “Masoom” fame! Who just melted our hearts with his eyes! The Jugal Hansraj aka chocolate hero of a few candy floss films! That Jugal Hansraj! Overall, the film is a casting coup! Arjun Rampal is good as the humane cop.
Parents – do watch. Don’t take children along if you have not taught them the difference between “good touch and bad touch”. They’d rather learn it from you, than from a film. The message is important and definitely needs to be spread, and the victims need to be able to talk about it without guilt or shame. But children need to learn this from parents, from people they trust, not from a film where a lot of things are left unexplained and taken for granted.
I would rate this film a 4/5 for the choice of the storyline and the performances! Some may find it extravagant, but it appealed to me because what is said there needs to be said. Music is average, execution of the story in the second half could’ve been better to make the suspense element stronger.
Watch for the social message and for Vidya Balan.