No dizzying heights for this heroine

No dizzying heights for this heroine

Heroine remains loyal to its title. As meant, it is a Kareena Kapoor film and she performs beyond herself as Mahi Arora. The effort is self-evident but unfortunately, the film pans out rather blandly.

Madhur Bhandarkar stays true to his style of sharing — yet again — a woman’s vulnerabilities and insecurities, except that the sets have now shifted a notch higher than the dance bars and fashion world.

Bhandarkar’s woman continues to be exploited until she learns to manipulate herself — with some help from a very aggressive public relations person Pallavi, played by Divya Dutta. Incidentally, Divya truly deserves her own film now. She is too good to be wasting herself in character roles.  

Mahi is not just insecure, she is also desperate — desperate to retain her position in the industry; to hold on to her lover (Arjun Rampal); to stay in the limelight; to be appreciated as an actor despite being a star. Underneath all the make-up, gloss and pretence, Mahi slowly goes under and willfully loses support — whether it is a man who loves her as she wants to be loved (Randeep Hooda); her loyal secretary (Govind Namdeo) who stays with her until… or even Aryan Khanna (Rampal) who makes a belated comeback into her life.         

The tragic story of a confused and troubled Mahi touches you but in parts — like when you realise that she is manipulating when there is no need; when she agrees to any random endorsement and appearance because roles have stopped, when she takes on a film with a ‘new wave’ director (Ranvir Shorey) just to prove her mettle as an actor and is completely at sea in her new scenario. But it fails to touch you overall — the missing link stays missing till the end — and unlike Tabu in Chandni Bar or Priyanka Chopra in Fashion — the voyeur in you is not satisfied with the easy way out in the end.

As for the other characters, it is a pity that when there are so many good actors like Randeep, Shahana Goswami (who portrays a successful heroine of a small budget film), Sanjay Suri (playing superstar Abbas Khan) and Govind Namdeo filling the frames — Bhandarkar would use them as mere props to highlight his heroine’s pain rather than expand their roles for character evolution which would enrich the film further.

A one-time watch, if you can stand Kareena crying all the time.

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