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Mulk: Daring & Daunting

Cast: Rishi Kapoor, Taapsee Pannu, Prateik Babbar & Ashutosh Rana

Director: Anubhav Sinha

Rating: ***1/2

What’s it about:

A regular peace loving family has to face discrimination and hatred when their own are accused of terrorist activities. But it also proves to be gruesome reality check when they decide to defend their loved ones.

Review:

It’s not just fight for justice but also the one for respect. It’s a fight against stigmatization and generalization that is often fought outside the courtrooms. Mulk is a film that lays bare some of the prejudices and perceptions that shape the opinions of millions. We are all aware of that but its effect is only felt by the families that experience it. Mulk succeeds in conveying that to a large extent.

Director Anubhav Sinha doesn’t mince words in his hard hitting drama that hinges on some solid performances.

Leading the pack is of course, Rishi Kapoor who gets into the skin of the character and effortlessly conveys the pain and frustration of a man who feels wronged. Aiding him is Taapsee Pannu, who once again proves her mettle in this courtroom drama albeit with a little less restrain than needed. Manoj Pahwa as a hapless father is a revelation and Ashutosh Rana is aptly cast as a public prosecutor, who goes over the top with his accusations. While rest of the supporting cast including Neena Gupta and Kumud Mishra are able, Prateik Babbar is the weakest link.

There are scenes in the film that range from moving to overtly dramatic and sometimes even preachy but Anubhav’s seasoned direction comes to the rescue. Background score is jarring and there is no memorable song in the film. They could have been avoided to keep the narrative crisper. Based in Benares, Anubhav captures the essence of a small town and its mindset quite well.

Overall, Mulk is a film that dares to ask difficult questions with enough conviction that will make you churn.

  • Ronak Kotecha

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