Shivani Shivaji Roy is an astute cop working in a Mumbai Crime Branch unit. Deft at picking up hidden clues and fearless in confronting hardened criminals, Shivani stumbles on a case that will change her life forever.
Shivani Shivaji Roy is an astute cop working in a Mumbai Crime Branch unit. Deft at picking up hidden clues and fearless in confronting hardened criminals, Shivani stumbles on a case that will change her life forever. less
“Mardaani does a decent job on the predictable cop vs criminal formula. Straight forward storytelling and Rani's gritty performance do justice to the hard hitting theme of child trafficking but excess melodrama makes it a one time watch! ”
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Although Pradeep Sarkar’s 'Mardaani' revolves around a serious issue, that of female trafficking, it’s a quintessential genre picture – a taut thriller that nicely integrates the issue into the narrative without getting all preachy and self-righteous about it, and more importantly, while consistently maintaining tonal balance. It’s even modeled as little else but a genre piece. It doesn’t shoehorn perfunctory sidetracks, and we’re given a peek into the protagonist’s personal life only so much so as to serve narrative purpose. The protagonist in question is cop Shivani (played by Rani Mukerjee) who gets on the trail of a sex trafficking racket after a girl she knows goes missing from an orphanage. Even the resolution (a rather problematic one, where the film ends up endorsing taking the law into one’s own hands), plays out more like a typical masala moment which incites claps and whistles, but one rendered more affecting because of the issue it deals with. But for a thriller, something feels curiously missing. Thriller is essentially a genre of manipulation; where every shot, every cutaway should result in rising tension. There are moments in 'Mardaani' which should have made me bite my nails, but the film never builds these moments up competently enough. It’s the actors playing the bad guys contantly keep you watching. Anil George infuses his character with gravitas and Tahir Bhasin as the young, creepy villain shows how cheesy is done right. The film is consistently watchable, but it’s also always just what it appears on surface and never rises above its “plot”. What keeps you engaged while watching the film is also what keeps the film from becoming memorable.