The Queen arrives again, this time in a bad ass avatar. Flavor of the season Kangana Ranaut returns 7 weeks after her biggest blockbuster in a role which is everything which Queen was not. A woman who swears and kills every second is something we don’t see much in Indian films. But director Sai Kabir gives us a new age Bandit Queen who is phun and extremely phasunable. An attempted westerner, again a genre very new to Indian films, works like a charm in the first part before coming apart in the second half. Alas, if only the fun had lasted a lil more.
The film takes you to Chambal where Alka Singh rules. She shoots and kills with elan and wants to possess everything. Enter Vir Das, who in an attempt to take Kangana for a ride gets stuck as her toy boy. Along with Piyush Mishra who plays Alka’s mama and guardian, this film chugs along quite nicely in the first half which introduces us to Alka’s quirks. A black comedy in every sense, it is intriguing and fun at the same time. But everything comes apart in the second half once Alka gets pregnant and becomes a typical girl which we all thought she isn’t before a rousing finale which leaves the scope for a sequel.
As an idea, I give full marks to director Sai Kabir. As an all conquering woman dacoit, Revolver Rani works. And Kangana again is a revelation. But saddled with a half baked screenplay and dull songs, there is as much as she can do. The charm and wittiness in the script which made Queen such a lovely film is missing here and that is one reason why Revolver Rani collapses. Nevertheless, it is a bold attempt and such films should be encouraged.
If a hatke film is your requirement, then Revolver Rani should do just fine. Expecting a Queen kinda encore would leave you disappointed.
Vikas Bahl who is 1/4th of the Phantom group boasting of names such as Anurag Kashyap, Vikram Motwane and Madhu Mantena has done us a favor. The man who co directed Chillar party years back has introduced us to an actress who before this was stuck doing roles which either had her playing a melancholic character or an arm candy to a established hero. Vikas offers us Kangana Ranaut in her purest, demure-est form and gives us a film which we root for from start to end.
Queen doesn’t boast of a novel story, it doesn’t even boast of never before seen sequences. But it exudes a certain warmth which is hard to ignore. On the lines of English Vinglish, Queen is a tale told straight from the heart and you can actually feel what Rani (Kangana) feels during the film. And in that lies the director’s victory.
The story kicks off in saddi dilli where in our Rani is excited about her marriage which is 2 days away before her fiancee rejects us. Heartbroken, she decides to go on her honeymoon alone and grows up in the process. Meeting Vijaylakshmi (Lisa Haydon in a fabulous performance) in Paris and running into 3 boys with whom she shares her room in Amsterdam teaches Rani the true value and meaning of life. And that leads us to a climax which leaves a smile plastered on your face.
Kangana Ranaut has always displayed a spark in whatever roles she has done, but the directors have always straddled her with edgy characters. But this time, she seizes the moment and delivers a performance which I am guessing will stay on to be the best of the year unless she overdoes herself with Revolver Rani. Rajkumar rao offers able support as her fiancee Vijay, but doesn’t get much scope. The cinematography by the late Bobby Singh is eye popping and the music by Amit Trivedi is foot tapping awesome.
But it is Kangana, Kangana and Kangana who bowls you over. This woman’s day witness the birth of a Queen. What the hell, just go and watch Queen. You bloody well need a good film and this film needs an audience.