What kind of feelings would you succumb to, if your long ’emotionally’ endearing courtship with your lover ends, on the eve of your marriage, because your fiancee suddenly dumped you, pulling a lame excuse? What if you were shy, timid, semi-urban Delhi girl, who has been tuned to say “yes’ to everything in the name of good manners! Cry your heart out? Become suicidal? Emotionally threaten your lover? Be guilty of excessive trust and lose faith in love and humanity? Hate yourself for what you are? Keep reminiscing your past memories, so that you can die slowly daily? Literally beg him to marry you, as you will never find an alliance again? Reflect indignantly on the innumerable ways, he has influenced you for so many years? Lie in bed and plot revenge? Go into depression?
Our protagonist Rani, is not the very bold, urbane, street-smart, independent and the ‘broadminded’ kind of girl! But, she has a ‘thing’ which suburban girls, brought up in open-minded ,closely bound families possess! You cant call it by name.. but she has got IT, Lots! Maybe, the word ‘guts’ can come close to describing IT! Whatever… she has got loads of it and she is going to find some insane way to mend her life! And bang… she takes the same honeymoon flight to Paris and then to Amsterdam, which she had so enthusiastically planned and booked, just before her marriage!
Queen is a sincere, free-spirited, coming of age, true soul-searching poignant tale, which doesn’t get bogged down, just like its lead girl, by anything other than its own spirit. Life is short, and it is here to be lived – OR – is it meant to be spent obeying, fearing, compromising, accommodating, choking, hiding and sacrificing, just for the sake of one thing – the ‘love’ of a person – who doesn’t understand, who you truly are? Writer director Vikhas Bhal sets up the above plot in style and gives us the solution, in a very bold brilliant and cheerful, ‘feel-good’ fashion, scripting a crisp and sophisticated screenplay, bridging the gap between ‘alternate’ and ‘mainstream’ cinema, like a breeze!
The crazily-talented Kangna Ranaut plays the female lead Rani magnificently, giving a ‘magical’ real feel! (So real that sometimes, you get the feeling that she might just walk out of the screen!) Her success lies in making us laugh, cry, doubt, worry, fear, hesitate, awe, change, cheer and party along with her, and having us ‘literally’ root and care for her! Take a bow, lady! The standards have been set! Lisa Hayden gives a pleasant shocker of a performance and carries all that revealing attire with attitude and oomph! Actually, there isn’t a single moment in this cosy cheerful charming film when you aren’t entertained!
The casting of the film is perfect and the artists playing Tim, Taka, Olexander and Marcello are top-notch spontaneous and are so lovable! The dialogues by Anvita Dutt – balancing between being lively /witty and deep /reflectional – take the film, a few notches higher! The cinematography by Siddharth Diwan- Bobby Singh, though set in eye-popping locations is apt, masterly, and excellently restrained – not taking us through the cities like a bus tour, which it could have easily become! Background score and songs by Amit Trivedi gel well, with the mood of the film. Editing by Abhijit Kokate and Anurag Kashyap is especially impressive in the cuts, depicting her change in attitude and feel in Paris and Amsterdam, as compared to what she was in India!
The director exhibits extreme talent as he showcases his lead’s journey – truly and gloriously, delightfully: right from the beginning – as a little shy/covert lover to a lady deeply and madly in love – and then, to the confused woman dealing with a messy break-up and then the scared, hesitant foreigner who wants to become someone by embracing ‘change’ , though at first reluctantly! He reserves his master stroke till the end, when Rani realizes and embraces ‘ another part of her personality’ , that she never knew existed!
Rani is undoubtedly the ‘Queen’ of this vibrant drama, that is persistently humorous, amusing , captivating and at times, questioning a lot of male hypocrisies with a smile! An absolute must watch!