ANAARKALI OF AARAH

Promodome Motion Pictures’ Anaarkali Of Aarah (A) is the story of a singer and her fight against people who want to sexually exploit her.

Anarkali (Swara Bhaskar) is a singer who lives in Arrah and entertains people by singing on the stage. At one such singing event, vice chancellor Dharmender Chauhan (Sanjay Mish­ra), in his drunken stupor, misbehaves with her and molests her, openly asking her (on the stage) to have physical relations with him. Anarkali slaps him, much to the discomfort of her manager, Rangeela (Pankaj Tripathi), who asks her to apologise to Chauhan and make peace with him. But Anarkali is in no mood for a settlement and goes to the police station to lodge a complaint. However, police inspector Chulbul Pandey (Vijay Kumar) is a paid stooge of the vice chancellor and refuses to file her complaint. Rather, he frames Anarkali on charges of pros­titution and arrests her. Rangeela bails Anarkali out and takes her to Chauhan to settle matters. But Anarkali is unrelenting.

Soon, Anarkali is forced to leave Arrah when Chauhan, Chulbul Pandey and their men don’t let her live in peace. Accompanied by her trusted friend, Anwar (Mayur More), she comes to Delhi and struggles to record her songs. A studio owner (Nitin Arora) gives her a break as a singer after his agent, Hiraman Tiwari (Ishteyak Khan), pleads with him. But Anarkali’s joy is shortlived as Chauhan’s men track her down in Delhi.

Anarkali is once again arrested. It is then that she enters into a pact with vice chancellor Dharmender Chauhan. What is the pact? Does Anarkali compromise on her principles? Or does she seek revenge on Chauhan?

Avinash Das has penned a story which talks of a woman’s fight to maintain her dignity. Although the milieu is different, the crux of the story is not very different from several other vendetta films about a woman’s dignity. The first half is fairly interesting but the drama loses its grip on the audience after that. Avinash Das’ screenplay does not have the desired emotional impact on the viewers if only because it concentrates on just one episode – of molestation. Anarkali is not shown to be a force to reckon with for her neighbours or singers of her kind or even in Delhi once she gets break as a singer whose album would be out. In that sense, the screenplay is limited in its appeal. After a point of time, it moves quite predictably. Dialogues, written by Avinash Das, are quite realistic.

Swara Bhaskar is natural to the core in the role of singer Anarkali. She walks, talks and sings like a professional singer from Arrah. Sanjay Mishra plays the lecherous vice chancellor with all the conviction at his command. Pankaj Tripathi is effective in the role of the spineless Rangeela. Ishteyak Khan makes his presence beautifully felt as Hiraman Tiwari. Mayur More has his moments as Anwar. Vijay Kumar is lovely as police inspector Chulbul Pandey. Abhishek Sharma (as Sukhilal) and Vishwa Bhanu (as Dukhilal) are ordinary. Nitin Arora lends able support as the studio owner. Ipsita Chakraborty Singh (as Chamki Rani), Manmohan Joshi (as Faiyazbhai), Brijesh Karanval (as Muffler), Dilip Kumar Gupta (as ATM), Nilesh Kumar Deepak, Indrajeet Kumar and Prashant Giri (all three as the vice chancellor’s men), Amit Navendu (as Satyakam Anand), Ram Kumar Singh (as the press reporter), Suman Patel (as Munni), Anshika Chauhan (as young Anarkali), Shobhna Bhardwaj (as the vice chancellor’s wife), Nisha Jha (as Chandni Chauhan), Monica Chowdhury (as the Sanskrit woman) and the rest provide the desired support.

Avinash Das’ direction is fairly good but the narration will not appeal to the multiplex audience. Rohit Sharma’s music is alright but there is not a single song which would appeal to the city youth. Lyrics (Ramkumar Singh, Dr. Sagar, Ravinder Randhawa and Avinash Das) are okay. Shabina Khan’s choreography is fair. Rohit Sharma’s background score is so-so. Arvind Kannabiran’s cinematography is okay. Production designing (by Ashwini Shrivastav) is fair. Jabeen Merchant’s editing could’ve been sharper.

On the whole, Anaarkali Of Aarah does not have the merits or entertainment value to make a mark at the box-office.

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