Lalbaugchi Rani: Film Review – The Queen Wins Hearts

Verdict: Laxman Utekar and Veena Jamkar are back with another endearing film.

The talented cinematographer, Laxman Utekar is known for his work in films such as English Vinglish, Boss, and Blue in Bollywood. But he had also created an impact in Marathi cinema with his directorial debut film Tapaal, which has won a National Award and many international awards. Now, he is back with his second film, Lalbaugchi Rani. This film, too, manages to touch the hearts of the people.

This film is a story of Sandhya (Veena Jamkar), a mentally challenged girl who lives in Lalbaug with her family that consists of her parents (Ashok Shinde and Pratima Joshi) and younger brother. Everyone in her vicinity adores her and calls her Lalbaugchi Rani. The film starts with Sandhya narrating her story from her childhood to the present day – the day when she turns 24. To make her day extremely special, her family decides to give her a birthday treat by taking her out on a Mumbai tour. This is a huge thing for her as she has never stepped out of her house after a childhood incident.

The film then shows her family having a great time with her at the iconic tourist spots in Mumbai. Soon after, Sandhya gets separated from her family and is found wandering around the streets of Mumbai. In this journey, she befriends strangers such as an aspiring actor, a child beggar, a spoilt young woman, a drunkard, and sex workers. Whoever she meets, she unknowingly, with her innocent ways, helps them see reality. Which comes out as a big reality-check for them and leads to a change of heart. While Sandhya is enjoying her adventurous and eventful day, her parents on the other hand are getting more worried by the minute. They immediately get in touch with the police and take their help to find her. Will Sandhya get back home, safe and sound? Watch Lalbaugchi Rani to know more.

The overall film is directed well. It shows the pulse of the bustling city of Mumbai. It also shows its shady side. With that as the backdrop, Utekar has presented us with a story of a challenged girl and her adventures in this big city. The plot of the film is simple and it comes with subtle social messages. However, the roles and the stories revolving around other supporting actors, who become a part of Sandhya’s journey could have been carved out better. There are some instances in the film which look unrealistic. It’s almost like Utekar was holding back from showing us the crude realities of life. Though there are many other scenes which have been executed well. The performance of the actors is splendid and Veena has managed to ace in her role.

Why You Should Watch This Movie:
Lalbaugchi Rani has some extremely talented actors who have delivered brilliant performances and made the film a complete entertainer with their spot-on dialogue delivery. This is another Laxman Utekar film that consists of social commentary which will not be too heavy for you to digest.

Release Date: 3rd June, 2016
Language: Marathi
Director: Laxman Utekar
Genre: Drama
Cast & Crew: Veena Jamkar, Prathamesh Parab, Neha Joshi, Parth Bhalerao, Ashok Shinde, Nandita Dhuri, Pratima Joshi, Reshma Shinde, Subrat Dutta

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