PINK – A few thoughts

Pink is THE most important film to have come out in the last few years. And it is powerful, relevant and extremely topical for today.

Three young, independent working girls living in a posh locality in Delhi find themselves in a harrowed situation one night after a post rock show – drinks and dinner rendezvous gone wrong, leaves a guy seriously injured with repercussions to follow. Accusations fly left and right, things get out of hand and our girls need to lawyer up as hurt egos, chamcha friends, shady cops and politicians all queue up to have a go at them.

Pink treads where very few films (if at all) have dared to and it does so very boldly and very matter-of-factly, pulling back no punches. And that is the biggest strength of the movie. I liked how the opening credits listed the three girls before Amitabh Bachchan. They do a pretty solid job mostly. The firebrand Meenal played by Taapsee Pannu, the pragmatic Falak (a terrific Kriti Kulhari) and the sweet Andrea (Andrea Tariang) go from being a cheerful fun-loving bunch to crumbling before our eyes as the incidents begin to unfold and the guys as well as society leave no stone unturned to question their character and blame everything on them. The guys in question are lead by a menacing Angad Bedi who plays Rajvir and Vijay Varma as the casually ruthless and misogynistic Ankit.

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And then there’s Amitabh Bachchan. He plays retired lawyer Deepak Sehgal who’s now diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Creepy as hell to begin with, wears a pollution mask that instantly reminded me of Bane. And where there’s Bane, there’ll always be… Yes! The way he goes back to being a lawyer is complemented by a very Zimmer-ish music piece. He watches over the girls from the shadows. He’s the silent guardian. The watchful protector. Need I say more? The Big B really makes full use of his booming baritone in the courtroom scenes and the audience in our screen clapped, whistled and cheered at every blow he lands. He’s pretty awesome.

I had a few issues with the movie as well.. the aforementioned courtroom scenes are played to the gallery with realism going for a complete toss. There’s no mention of prints, DNA or anything remotely resembling forensics. Key witnesses who could’ve turned the case either way are forgotten – like the girls’ landlord. Piyush Mishra as the lawyer for the boys, although effective is as caricaturish as it gets. A lot of the supporting cast are poorly written, not adding much value to the plot – like Meenal’s father or Deepak’s sickly wife. Even the songs feel added just to take a break from the proceedings. Finally the way the case is decided – it all seems convenient and a bit too wishful.

While the writing is lazy from a plot point of view, the dialogues are terrific. Besides playing to the gallery, they actually convey the message and the point of the film well. The movie adopts a thriller format in the first half. As we’re not sure exactly what happened, it keeps us guessing until we learn the same through the witnesses and evidence presented in court in the second half.

But here’s a movie where I’m willing to overlook all the issues for what it’s saying and the way it’s saying so. The dread is real. The problem is real. Pink brings it all to the forefront. I can’t even begin to imagine what women – of all ages go through in this country every single day and it’s high time a mainstream movie gave us a small glimpse into the same. Also credit where it’s due – let’s commend the censor board for giving the movie a UA certificate despite its adult theme. I’m sure a lot of parents will want their teenage children to watch this movie.

The message is loud. The message is clear. No means No. Which makes Pink an absolute must watch.

Pink-1My score: 7.5 on 10

Pink

Drama, thriller

Directed by: Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury

Starring: Taapsee Pannu, Kriti Kulhari, Andrea Tariang, Amitabh Bachchan

Running time: 136 minutes