Saturday, January 8, 2011

No One Killed Jessica

Cast: Rani Mukherjee, Vidya Balan, Myra
Director: Raj Kumar Gupta

After on a sensitive note of terrorism in Aamir, Raj Kumar Gupta embarks upon to give you a glamorized and more of a Bollywood-ish flick on another real infamous incident. The story is executed in a loud manner and much media eccentric.

The movie rolls on with a fine art of newspaper print with cast and crew being entitled, Rani's voice on her fate with Delhi and a hard hitting score "Dilli" by Amit Trivedi. The screenplay starts with Sabrina(Vidya) being disturbed a phone call late night learning that her sister Jessica has been shot, and the former barges into a hospital to go to flashback.

Jessica, positively and more beautifully characterized by Myra, with her friend Vikram (Shayan Munshi's character in the film), was a celebrity bartender in a high society party thrown by socialite Mallika (Beena's character); where she was shot dead by Manish Bhardwaj (Manu Sharma of the real incident). Here's the best scene of the movie where Vikram shouts "Somebody shot Jessica" in search of help where high elites were busy partying. The partying sequence is brilliantly executed.

Trial begins. Manish got arrested and here arises the disastrous flaw by the editor: NDTV screen highlights the date 12th Oct 1996 of the arrest, while the incident was dated in Summer 1999. It is so typical Bollywood-ish of the editor and the director to go this major flaw unnoticed!

Soon, witnesses were paid off or changed setting it a tough task for Sabrina, who was supported only by a police inspector, to seek justice. Vidya Balan remains on a single pitch throughout, while the police inspector played by Rajesh Sharma was spectacular.

After several court trails, justice was denied. The courtroom scenes had some poor performers and Shyam Tolani (Ram Jethmalani, the actual defense lawyer) could even piss you off with his monotonous dialogue delivery.

Denial of justice brought Meera(Rani), the star reporter of NDTV, into action. Rani felt her presence strong in each of her scene. Pitches hard. End with the first half, a newspaper headlined "No One Killed Jessica" hits.

Meera unwinds all witnesses to media attention and, thus make it a public issue. Does a sting operation similar to what Tehelka actually did to get Shayan Munshi confessed. MP Bhardwaj could smell danger for his son and his wife appears on the screen for the third time with "Kuch bhi kar lo, mujhe mera Monu wapis chahiye." It, now becomes an insensitive part of humor.
Another is, a group of Sardars protesting "Just-ice for" for "Justice for Jessica."

Rang De Basanti's best scene is now on the screen, by which Raj Kumar seems inspired, and also a viewer to set a candle-light peace protest for Jessica. The protest remains for long on the screen, trying to bring out emotions but the magic is created for only one or two shots. Moreover, you will see caricature representation of Sheila Dixit, A P J Abdul Kalam, Manmohan Singh. Is it a humor or they were trying to be more real? Either-way, it can be offensive!

The story could have been developed by another point of view to be more inspiring and could have slapped the system harder.
Why only Jessica and Sabrina are with the actual names, and Shayan as Vikram, Jethmalani as Tolani?
Except the lead, supporting casts were just representation. Manish in his scenes was a hardcore Delhi-ite, and the most hardcore was the background score by Amit Trivedi. A strong contender for an award. Cinematography was below the mark. An exceptionally well is apt for capturing the "dark" side of such screenplay. Arts remain suitable. Dialogues prevented it to go a melodrama. Editing was poor for such story telling. However, Raj Kumar knows it well to direct a sequence by inhibiting actual art and making it relevantly more inspiring. An expectation remained from Vidya to be on a varying note in the mature-ness or be more inspiring. Rani was, though, perfect.
A non-Bollywood story, though Bollywood-ized. Remains a good head-start for a new year. Could have been a must watch, but is a simple watch.

Rating: * * *

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