‘Anaarkali Of Arrah’ movie review by Divya Solgama
Our country is filled with various religions, states, casts, cultures, languages, mindset, cuisine and many such diversified stuffs including dance and music. Every state has their own style of classical dance and music along with having some local folk stuffs to cherish. If Maharashtra is famous for its Lavani, so is Gujarat for its Diaro or Ghoomar in Rajhasthan and so on. One such dance form is on the lines of Maanch in the heartland of India (U.P / Bihar / M.P), where a dancer performs in a public gathering by singing double meaning naughty songs only to titillate its audience. We have seen some prominent characters enacting such dancers in films like ‘Omkara’, ‘Parched’ and few more. ‘Anarkali Of Arrah’ is one such film where its lead protagonist is a local dancer known for her naughty songs. So, let’s find out whether ‘Anarkali Of Arrah’ will manage to deliver an authenticated film matching to its genre or might end up among all those films where besides one liner unique concept, there is nothing else to cherish.
‘Anarkali Of Arrah’ is a story about a small town dancer Anarkali (Swara Bhaskar), who is the most famous and loved dancer of that part of the country. A local politician V.C (Sanjay Mishra) is Anarkali’s biggest fan and tries to attend almost every performance of hers. One day in a public event V.C gets drunk and starts to sexually harass Anarkali in front of the entire crowd. In order to set herself free, Anarkali slaps V.C in front of the full crowd. After this incident V.C wants to humiliate Anarkali in every possible manner and Anarkali wants to expose the real side of V.C to everyone. Things do not work in favour of any of them and what happens next is what the entire film is all about.
Screenplay & Technical Details:
The story is on the lines of ‘Pink’ and still has its own distinctive points. There is a lot of detailing related to the character of Swara Bhaskar, which works in the favour of the film. Right from the opening scene, you know that the movie has a lot more to offer. Every scene involving Swara Bhaskar and Sanjay Mishra are remarkable. Right from Sanjay trying to sexually abuse Swara to Swara’s outburst followed by Swara trashing Sanjay Mishra in his house, cops framing Swara into prostitution, Swara’s bonding with Chittaranjan Tripathy in Delhi followed by the highly powerful finale. The finale dance by Swara with total rage and full energy is one of the key scenes of the film. These scenes keep you glued to the silver screen, despite of overdose of songs in the initial part of the film. Also, the treatment is slow and repetitive after a while and drags a lot in the second half of the film. The second half could have been up to the mark, if only the story and the screenplay in that part would had been more detailed and connecting. The cinematography is of top notch and goes well with the flow of the film.
There are many songs in this movie, especially in the start of the film. These songs lack the connectivity, but at the same time are essential enough to establish the character of Swara Bhaskar. The finale track is full of energy and goes well with the flow of the film. It’s good to hear Sonu Nigam in this movie after a long time. Also, after a long time we witness to hear songs with Classical Music in our Hindi cinema.
Director Avinash Das comes up with a film which has basic shades matching with ‘Pink’, but at the same time ends up delivering a power packed film set in the heart land of India. The hardship behind the detailing of the characters is clearly visible. On the other side, the narrative could have been a bit better and not slow at times.
Swara Bhaskar is like a rocket on a fire in this movie. Right from her first scene, she is totally in her character and does cent per cent justice to the theme of the film. The rage and frustration she delivers in the finale scene followed by the brilliant end scene lifts the film one notch above. Right from her dress, language, dialect, mannerisms and body language, everything is cent per cent. Sanjay Mishra does a decent job as a comical villain, but ends up being a victim of half-baked script. Pankaj Triparthy is cute, but wasted. Chittaranjan Tripathy is sweet in his part.
On an overall basis, ‘Anarkali Of Arrah’ is a prodigious dramaturgy due to legendary performance by Swara Bhaskar. It does have its weak moments and some bland part, but ends up being a good watch for sure.
Rating – 3.5/5 (Source – Bollywood Times)