Mardaani is a no frills hard hitting thriller made all the more unusual by the usually very feminine Rani Mukherjee playing a tough as nails cop directed by Pradeep Sarkar who has also made more or less softie movies like Parineeta and Lagaa Chunari mein Daag. Soft Director + soft heroine= thriller with woman cop is a bit unusual to watch.
Rani is Shivani Shivaji Roy, Senior Inspector Crime Branch. When a street child whom she and her niece have befriended goes missing, she investigates and stumbles upon a child trafficking ring, headed by a young college drop out. The story is about how she busts the ring.
The movie is fast paced, dramatic and full of action. You flinch when you see young girls being paraded naked to assess their worth in the sex trade. You cringe when you see them serving fat, old lascivious men. And you get scared at the hard heartedness of men who do this for a living. No wonder you feel like applauding when the cop goes to save them.
The movie sticks to the story and doesn’t fall for obvious twists like the cop’s niece getting kidnapped which cynical me kept expecting. The end though fitting could have held more menace given how brutal the villain is shown to be in earlier scenes. But I guess you had to show her being a super cop. If Ajay Devgn can do it, why not Rani Mukherjee?
Rani is focused and serious. She can’t really carry off the police lingo of gaalis that nonchalantly, but makes a good cop nevertheless. This movie comes as a great relief after seeing the tamasha she made of herself in Aiyya. Priyanka Sharma as the street girl Pyaree who gets abducted is also a fine actor and lends good support. Tahir Bhasin makes for a most unusual villain. Polite even when he has the cop tied up, he manages to make you loathe him. The others (including Shivani’s bechara husband) don’t have much to do though her team of cops in Mumbai is good fun to watch.
The movie is definitely good for a one-time watch in the theatre..Not only does it talk about social issues and how a woman can be a great cop etc. but also gives you a good character to look forward to in other movies. Now, the real fun would be if in the next movie Bobby Jasoos comes to help Shivani Roy solve a case. Woman power zindabad!view less