Verdict – A raunchy, badass performance you’re going to want to watch.
One look at the cast and trailer of Anaarkali of Aarah and you know it is not just another Bollywood masala flick. Last year we saw Pink, which was largely applauded for being a woman-centric film with a powerful message. Based on a similar underlying premise, Anaarkali of Aarah is a bold film, dealing with an extremely relevant issue that has been put across by some fine performances. It is not a glamorous film and some scenes will make you cringe, but the fact that it manages to do that is what makes it a powerful watch.
Avinash Das, who marks his debut with this film, has done a commendable job of putting across a pressing topic in a manner the public can easily grasp. No means no, be it a partner, wife, a sex worker or an erotic singer.
Following in her mother’s footsteps, Anaarkali (Swara Bhaskar) is one of Bihar’s most popular erotic singer. Performing is her passion and she has the looks and the moves that have men swooning over her double-meaning songs. However, while her profession may require her to sing and dance in a suggestive manner for an audience of men, off the stage she is a no-nonsense woman with a sharp tongue. She was born to be on the stage and she loves the attention but she is never asking for it. However, she is faced with a moral dilemma when things get out control during one performance and she ends up rubbing shoulders with the powerful Vice Chancellor Dharmendra Chauhan (Sanjay Mishra). Therein begins her fight for her dignity and her profession as she deals with powerful misogynistic men.
What works best for the film is its rustic locations and hard-hitting storyline. Swara Bhaskar has put her heart and soul into her performance and that is apparent on the screen. Sanjay Mishra and Pankaj Tripathi fit into their roles with similar ease. The music of the film, particularly its lyrical numbers, is essential in setting the right vibe and taking the film to the next level.
Things can get a tad bit over dramatic in the second half and it might get difficult to grasp the nuance of the songs and dialogues in the heavily northern Bihari dialect. But that shouldn’t stop you from watching this new-age Anaarkali.
Why You Should Watch This Movie:
A quality film with some crackling performances, Anaarkali of Aarah is a film that manages to entertain yet educate. It focuses on a section of society dealing with an issue which requires long-overdue attention.