Sunday, March 9, 2014

Queen (2014) - Kangana wears her crown right!

This was first published in Times City.

Queen is a routine, familiar character, very one of us. Naive, docile, acquiescent, untraveled. Rani Mehra (Queen) is comfortably shuttered from the world around her until life gives her a bolt from the blue when two days before her wedding, her fiancee calls it off. She is shattered but not without faith. She picks up the pieces and gets going, much reluctantly initially. What follows is an endearing journey of her exploits and self-discovery (Without getting out of character, mind you!) That is where her honesty and earnestness come to the fore.

In many ways, Queen reminded me of Highway. Of how this character, not quite by choice, sets off for a journey into the unknown and what she explores about herself. And how she gradually begins to find comfort in the unknown. Queen, like Highway, is about the journey not the destination. Queen also takes you back to English Vinglish. Except that here's a younger Shashi Godbole. There are even some typically clich├ęd characters around both of them. Kangana also reminded me of Sridevi's good old days of Chandni, bubbly, brimming with life, with amazing comic timings.

Rajkummar Rao takes up almost any role and makes it his own. As a regressive fiancee, he's perfectly unlikable. Lisa Haydon looks natural for most part but her dialogues appeared clumsy at times. Kangana's Japanese friend Taka was annoyingly hackneyed. Her daadi and brother Chintu were amusingly lovable characters. Queen's strength is also in its delectable nuances. It's those moments that make this worth a watch. My only grouse was that the film loses pace in bits and is mostly predictable. It could've been wound up much faster.

But if there's one reason you must certainly watch this, it's for Kangana! From her unrehearsed, unfilmy dialogues to her innocent smugness, to her brilliant timings, it's hard not to fall in love with this queen.

PS: Don't leave before watching the credits ;-)

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