Revenge movies are sweet when you are deeply involved with the characters. You love a certain hero or the villain is so evil, he deserved getting killed. But there is ensemble cast (with Rani Mukerji obviously taking the lead, it is difficult to fall for every character’s revenge story. Obviously, having seen the trailer I half expected the film to be quite linear. There were no surprises.
Naina Mathur (Rani Mukerji) has a neurological condition, which causes motor tics i.e. involuntary loud noise over which she has no control. Despite her condition, she wants to be a school teacher. ‘I was born to be a teacher, she claims’. There is a backstory showing her struggles and how her relationship with her father was damaged. By a lucky break, she gets a chance to teach in the school, she attended as a child.
However, the challenge is momentous because she is teaching ‘basti the bachay’, who has come in this prestigious school due to ‘Right to Education Program’. They were rejected as outcasts by teachers as well as student, which has now made them rebellious. They have targeted certain children and teachers. We see them, placing bets on how long this new teacher will survive. Naina, has never allowed her condition to be define her and is ready to take on this trial. She slowly gains their trust and we get to know the stories of these children. There is not much of note here, a little bit stereotypical if you will. However, she is able to push them towards studies with her unique methods. You know what happens next.
While Naina’s story is engaging and her acting outstanding, we do feel for her. However, the script allows little room for unforced emotion elsewhere. Rather than just rising above their own difficulties, there are characters placed highlight good and bad. It’s Naina Mathur vs. her father or a fellow teacher or basti ka badmash bacha vs. a snob brat. The revenge or I told you so gets a bit old.
Nevertheless, if you are a fan of Rani Mukerji, this is a film for you. I am, and I really enjoyed her portrayal of Naina Mathur. The loose holes and predictability in the film, doesn’t match her earnest performance.