*There may be spoilers in this post, so read it at your own peril if you still haven’t watched the film*
Some movies are so melodramatic that they make you cry, some movies just entertain, some makes you introspect and then there’s QUEEN. No unwanted melodrama, no unwanted item songs, just crisp and fresh storytelling. QUEEN is one of those rare gems in Indian cinema that is totally heroine centric. When all directors and actors are running behind record openings & boasting about their business in C’s, Queen is a fresh whiff of change. Hats off to Vikas Bahl for that and all the makers that backed him for this project.
Rani, an ultra-conservative girl from Rajouri is about to marry her close friend Vijay. 2 days before the marriage Vijay calls her to a coffee shop and informs her that ‘she is not right for him’. Rani begs him and is burdened by the thoughts of who will marry her again and her life is going to be ruined. However, after some introspection she decides to embark on her honeymoon trip alone to a foreign country (Paris & Amsterdam). The rest of the story shows us the transformation of Rani, the small town girl into Rani, a woman with her likes and dislikes who loves to live life on her own terms and do what makes her happy. She also proves that a woman doesn’t always need a man to make her happy.
Feminism in India is perfectly explains in one of the scenes from the movie where her to be mother-in-law woos Rani by saying that, one the men leave the house, we can have the house to ourselves and we can drink tea and coffee and make merry. This is how our women are portrayed for years in films, mostly as slaves to men. Rani shows us that a woman’s self-esteem is supreme and you do not always have to be aggressive to drive across your point. Don’t get me wrong here. The character Rani is a walking personification of a strong feminist character; however, she proves that strength doesn’t always mean aggression.
There are numerous instances where we expect a clichéd ending during the story. For e.g. there is a closeness felt between Rani & her foreigner friend. When we are thinking that there would most certainly be a love story there, the director just moves along with the story. The strength of Queen is the boldness of the writer/director in avoiding the clichés that have plagues Indian cinema for years. They could have easily given into ‘pleasing the audience’, but decided and stood by the writing and story which deserves a pat on the back.
And how can I end this without a mention of Kangana Ranaut. Kangana has given a performance of her lifetime as Rani. Kangana breathes life into Rani and makes you smile with her gob smacking performance. Keep the awards cabinet ready! The music too is outstanding.
It is one of the movies that you cannot afford to miss this year. Doesn’t matter if you do not understand the language. Watch it with subtitles, but DO NOT MISS IT!
QUEEN- heart warming, bold and as regal as the title suggests!