Rating : 6/10
Release Date : 8th June, 2012 (India)
Time : 114 minutes
Directors : Dibakar Banerjee; Writers : Dibakar Banerjee, Urmi Juvekar (based on the novel ‘Z’ by Vassilis Vassilikos); Music : Vishal- Shekhar
Starring : Abhay Deol, Kalki Koechlin, Emraan Hashmi, Prosenjit Chatterjee, Pitobhash Tripathy, Tillotama Shome, Aanat Jouge
Politics, land deals, murder, thuggery, toothless enquiry committees, different worlds for the rich and poor, the suffering of the innocents and the clever bureaucrats with both sides of the bread usually buttered. Well depicted, brilliantly (and I mean brilliantly) acted. But we’ve seen it all before.
An opponent of the ruling party and its forcible land acquisition, Prosenjit, is hit by a truck. The person in charge of the enquiry committee is Abhay Deol, the CM’s (Supriya Pathak’s) personal favourite and also the blue eyed boy of the Principal Secretary (Farooque Sheikh). The alleged drunken driver is behind bars. His accomplice is missing. A videographer who has evidence. His sidekick (Emraan Hashmi), who runs a porn business on the side and has seen enough. Prosenjit’s ex-student, Kalki, who’s had enough of the beating around the bush and wants justice. And her maid who gives an early warning of the trouble to come.
Dark, almost claustrophobic in atmosphere, it almost seems like breathing is difficult in Bharat Nagar, the place where this is set, 2 hours from Delhi, the potential site of a multi million dollar business park. The performances are legendary, whether the driver, the maid, the accomplice and a few others unheralded actors (the politico’s strong man, the SSP, Prosenjit’s wife to name a few). Abhay was very good and very restrained. Kalki conveyed her angst well. When you see Farooque Shaikh in this kind of form, you wonder why he isn’t there in more films. But the pick of the lot was Emraan, scarcely recognizable, very believable, getting his slouch, toothy grin, shuffle and ingratiating mannerisms just right.
Little asides are nice. The name under which Kalki’s number is stored on Emraan’s mobile (& the spelling). The people at the airport to receive Prosenjit marveling at his acumen at tagging along with the film actress. The sarcastic remarks of the police officer when Emraan views a dead body in the dark. The truck drivers response when asked how could he kill someone. The end is cute But brief.
Even though you’re kept sufficiently gripped through the film, you do feel its something you’ve been exposed to many times before. Story wise, its just taking the various headlines of our current newspapers and serving them in an interesting blend. Wish there was something more. Then I could’ve looked forward to seeing it again.