Rating: 3.5/5 Stars (Three and half stars)
Star Cast: Sarah Jane Dias, Rajshri Deshpande, Sandhya Mridul, Amrit Maghera, Pavleen Gujral, Anushka Manchanda, Tannishtha Chatterjee, Adil Hussain, Anuj Chaudhary, Arjun Mathur
Director: Pan Nalin
What’s Good: I don’t know what’s the best thing about Angry Indian Goddesses, the easily relatable characters or the sheer poignancy of it’s story that truly makes it a cathartic experience. The film pours itself into every girl/woman’s soul and mirrors their innermost desires.
What’s Bad: What starts out as a fun, emotional and realistic ride, soon turns up it’s drama quotient towards the climax. The cinematic liberties taken by Pan Nalin towards the end, actually are a detour from his original idea that the rest of the film thrives on.
Loo break: Can You Hold It A Little While!
Watch or Not?: Definitely watch! What makes this film extremely special is it’s strongly positive vibe while portraying pure friendship. It thoroughly strives by the sayings of ‘Friend in need’ and ‘Partners in crime’ minus all the ‘girly’ drama one would expect in it.
First we meet, Freida (Sarah Jane Dias) who is a photographer dealing with the madness of fairness creams as she shoots for a brand that asks her to re-touch their dark-skinned model. Next is, Suranjana Sharma (Sandhya Mridul), a competent and demanding corporate boss who feels no shame as she strips down from her suit into a two piece as she dives into the swimming pool of her office as she deals with her high pressure job.
Joanna (Amrit Maghera) is a Indian-British starlet, trying her luck in Bollywood. She is busy proving herself to be more than just an eye-candy after working in a few C grade films.
Pam aka Pamela (Pavleen Gujral), is a Delhi-based housewife who was once a college scholar but now is stripped down to just being a wife who is being nudged by her in-laws to start a family.
Madhureeta better known as MAD (Anushka Manchanda) is a singer who is struggling with a sinking career.
And the most interesting of all, Lakshmi (Rajshri Deshpande) is Freida’s maid servant. A gutsy Lakshmi knows how to deal with lecherous men and is brave enough to grab them by their b*lls. (Literally!)
Nargis (Tannishtha Chatterjee) is an activist who joins the gang a little late but has an important place.
What happens when these 7 ladies come together for a celebration but in turn learn to deal with the grave realities of their lives is what the film further unfolds.
Angry Indian Goddesses Review: Script Analysis
The noteworthy part about Angry Indian Goddesses is the fact that it is written by a man. Pan Nalin captures the spirit of womanhood right from it’s nerve. Their raw emotions of angst, gloom, the need to break away from shackles are all weaved beautifully into a plot that remains real till most of the film’s run time. It is the detailing of the characters that works in favor of the script as each character comes alive and has a sense of authenticity to it.
For every woman watching the film, it is a treat to see similar women shed their inhibitions in a friendly banter. Some of the best written scenes remain, the one where Freida and her friends hit on her neighbor who is indulging in quite a suggestive car wash. How often do we see girls fantasizing looking at a man’s rear?
Another hilarious, yet real conversation strikes with the question ‘How do you do it?’ Yes, that’s the only innocent question to come up in a conversation when one of the characters reveals being a lesbian.
The script mainly fails to shine in it’s third act. It suddenly takes quite a cinematic turn, riding high on cliches.One would have certainly expected more from it’s climax.
Angry Indian Goddesses Review: Star Performances
The casting is bang on for this film.
Sarah Jane Dias delivers a genuine performance as Freida. She certainly shows she is an actress with potential and that we need to look beyond her Kya Supercool Hai Hum Days.
While we usually write-off models being good actresses, Amrit Maghera is a surprise package in the film. In one of the scenes she is referred to being Katrina types since she is half-British. Maghera delivers an unusually calm yet enjoyable performance. She not only looks pretty but also expresses beautifully in certain scenes.
Pavleen Gujral is a stunner in this film. As the Delhi house-wife, she is spot on. Her emotional breakdown scene is a one to marvel. Gujral is a star in the making and her talent must certainly be recognized.
Sandhya Mridul is an established actress and a role like that of Suranjana is not challenging enough for her. She delivers her best as usual.
Rajshri Deshpande as Lakshmi is another character you are truly enthused by in the film. At one moment she is dancing on an item number with Joanna in the other she is holding a dark secret with her. Rajshri makes this character looks extremely special and lovable. She knows exactly what the director wants her to be.
Anushka Manchanda sings with her heart and does a fine job with her character MAD.
Tannishtha Chatterjee appears quite late in the film and does not have a powerful character as such but she fits the bill.
Arjun Mathur and Adil Hussein are the only two men to have found a place in this film. They are both exceptional in their minor scenes.
Angry Indian Goddesses Review: Direction, Editing and Screenplay
Goa is a beauty that many filmmakers have captured on the lens in their films but none like Nalin. We get a whiff of an old as well as new side of the city in this film. Minus the obvious party shots, the film is also shot in quiet, abandoned fields, middle-class homes with soiled walls and no paints, the waves of the beach which are usually captured in their calm are shown ferocious in this one. Pan Nalin’s film all through remains on a soft lighting too.
In spite of revolving around a bachelorette party, we are not forced with a party track with words such as ‘daaru’ in focus and that’s a relief. The music is somber and only when required.
Angry Indian Goddesses Review: The Last Word
Angry Indian Goddesses is a film that explores womanhood in a brilliant manner. Yes, we are women who discuss sex, who are irritated of fighting over equality, who know how to deal with a pervert, who can juggle being Kaali, Lakshmi, Saraswati (goddesses) and that is exactly what we see. I am going with a 3.5/5 for the film.
Angry Indian Goddesses Trailer
Angry Indian Goddesses releases on 4th Dec, 2015.
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