After a lackluster 7 Khoon Maaf from Director Vishal Bhardwaj ,we expected him to come back with a bang.He came back with Matru Ki Bijli and as the promo was released – we saw Pankaj Kapur,Shabana Azmi,a different Imran Khan and strangely a pink Buffalo. That left me and few friends stumped and doubts about the movie were sure to cripple the minds of movie buff’s.
However with fingers crossed , i booked the tickets anyways.Movie starts with a drunk Pankaj Kapur(Mandola) with Matru(Imran) smashing a small liquor shop with their car and then mandola inspiring villagers and then helping them to revolt against the ‘evil himself’.
Well that was a quite a start -:) – now Mandola(Pankaj Kapur) is a land-hungry guy who wants to grab villagers land and then turn it into an industrial plant,shopping mall – his partner in crime is the Minister(Shabana Azmi).The deal also has Mandola’s daughter Bijli(Anushka Sharma) engaged to minister’s son played by Arya Babbar.
Mandola has an assistant matru(Imran Khan) and he does everything for him – including stopping mandola to get drunk – which is almost never succesfull.What follows is a ride full of halluciations – Mandola witnessing a Pink Buffalo(an after effect of getting drunk by the local Drink Gulabo). The movie focuses on SEZ(special economic zones),land politics to even corruption from village to city. For the complete picture please go ahead and watch the movie.
Vishal Bhardwaj stamp is visible almost everywhere.His affection for movie making,story telling and and sharp dialogues is evident too.Few sequences are brilliant and leaves you praising him as a master storyteller.
However the first half is simple – nothing special honestly,it is the second half of the movie which makes this movie special.Filled with superb sequences back to back- Shabana Azmi’s speech or rather a rehearsal in front of his son explaining the ‘why the marriage between her son and Bijli’ is important is outstanding.Mandola explaining his dream project – with detailed explanation and stunning visuals.
Now a word about Pankaj Kapur : Spectacular.Finding it impossible to resist – here is a paragraph about Pankaj Kapur – He is in smashing form – whether its his hallucinations,his manipulating,power hungry “other side” as Mr Mandola or the super drunk social servant’ish himself, or even while dancing his soul out. Not only he acts well – he is very well the soul of the movie.Absolutely mind-blowing performance by the veteran.
Now if Pankaj Kapur is spectacular-you cannot help but think about ‘always awesome’ Shabana Azmi – oh lady – how many times do we have to praise you- you act so well that other actresses look like a joke.She is in top form as a minister and a power hungry lady.Her eyes,presence and body language only tells you one thing – she is the Queen of acting – the best in Bollywood and one of the best in worldwide cinema too.
Imran Khan does well,though the veterans don’t leave much scope for him- Anushka pitches in a decent performance too.The side characters also chip in decent performances and tag along well in this crazy ride.
With few flaws – this movie does manage to leave an impact on the viewer and Vishal Bharadwaj easily proving his command over his craft yet again.The movie has absurd and brilliant moments both – its theater like scenes and “not a laugh-out-loud humor” may not appeal to all.
It will not set the box office on fire but it still remains a fine movie.It is up to the viewer to decide – Brilliantly absurd or Absurdly brilliant 🙂
Movie Rating : 3.5/5 – don’t miss this one – if you want to see something really different.
- Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola: 10 cracking dialogue (ibnlive.in.com)
- ‘Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola’ review: The year’s first gem has arrived, don’t miss it! (ibnlive.in.com)