From a film that comes right to the point in 10 minutes flat, you expect a lot of intelligent non-linear narrative and clever screenplay and when you have the renowned filmmaker Sudhir Mishra at the helm of affairs, your expectations only soar manifold. Right from the hot and steamy posters to the promos dealing with the topic of sexual harassment, Inkaar has been garnering immense traction from the masses. We tell you whether it lives up to the hype or not.
It only takes filmmaker Sudhir Mishra 10 minutes to establish the premise of the film. Maya Luthra (Chitrangada Singh), the National creative director of an ad agency files a case of sexual harassment against the company's CEO Rahul Varma (Arjun Rampal). The film then takes to a counter narrative of both parties where you are shown contradicting versions narrated by both the characters through a series of flashbacks. The story moves to Rahul, an ad guru who has travelled his way to the top with sheer hardwork and discipline. He comes across Maya, a newbie in the business from a small town Solan out to make a name for herself. He takes her under his wings and they hit it off professionally. He tutors her and raises her rank in the firm. Swooned by her mentor's interest in her, Maya falls for him and in one weak moment the barrier between a professional relation and a personal one breaks. The couple soon faces trouble leading for Maya to take off to another continent. She returns from New York after 7 years, this time with a boyfriend in tow, and clinches the post of National Creative Director of the same firm from right under Rahul's nose. What follows is a diatribe of jealously, anger frustration leading for Maya to slap a case of sexual harassment against Rahul.
In common cases of such grimness one tends to give the benefit of doubt to the women considering the accused male as guilty. However, filmmaker Sudhir Mishra brilliantly showcases the flipside of such thinking and presents a riveting drama where all characters are grey. He presents contradicting sides of the crimes of passion that leave you confused on which story to believe. Sudhir packs a punch by dishing out a suspense element within the initial ten minutes itself. But the built up fizzles out as the story starts unraveling rather too quickly.
What works against the film is its climax which turns out to be a complete tangent to the sexual harassment theme bound by the cliches of Bollywood. A probable resolve to the building case could've worked better. It's also the length that's a deterrent and a long stretched two part narrative of the situation which goes on almost right till the end. Neither does Sudhir Mishra let the love story breath nor the fierceness of the crime failing to leave an impact on the audience.
However, his masterstroke comes out in the way he extracts performances from his lead actors. Instead of just being a dapper counterpart to the scorching Chitrangada Singh, Arjun this time around scores with his restrained act too. He fits the bill completely and rules out the complaints about his acting skills. Chitrangada too appears in her elements and plays her part brilliantly.
Music by Shantanu Moitra is very creatively composed and is completely in sync with the film.
What happens to be a potent seed for a crackling story, Inkaar gets mired by the cliches of conventionalism and loses its steam. Watch it still for the brilliant performances and gripping narrative.
Critic: Mansha Rastogi
(2.5 / 5) : Above Average