Mind-blowing. Brilliant. Awesome. Clean entertainer with a 'state-of-the-art' message for every woman... and man. Simply superb!
One can go on and on tweaking adjectives to describe this stunning movie that not only enthralls you and have you holding your sides, laughing freely in some scenes, but also sends you home (male or female) with a feel-good attitude and that adrenalin rush of being one with Rani's motives and decision. In the end, you become one with QUEEN even as you start to leave the theatre grooving to the Laxmikant-Pyarelal number from ANHONEE (1973), 'Hungama Ho Gaya'
, a wonderfully remixed, and intelligently re-used track.
Clambering over the bar counter in Paris (fully tunn
), dancing to the beats of 'Hungama Ho Gaya'
, Rani (Kangana Ranaut) is in her heightened state of exasperated elation. She knocks off her behenji
-type of sweater and has enough sense to tuck it in her hand-bag before she goes berserk.
Vikas Bahl, take a bow. This is a flawless presentation. Even though the film clocks around 146 minutes, one wishes it wouldn't end. Imagine feeding French Toasts to a French national who has not heard of one and Golgappa
's in Amsterdam. Even the funny parts, though unintentional are so funny that it beats a comedy hands down.
And no item number comes on screen when the end credits are rolling. Instead, there are Facebook updates of Rani's 'honeymoon', which is a mini movie in itself. Novel idea!
The casting and filtering of characters is a fine-art in itself on how a movie should be made. The depiction and subtle usage of the characters, without overstaying any one character's limit is another. Moreover, having a mix of characters from Japan, Russia, France and Paris and having them blend together to give off a cosmopolitan effect and yet not overshadowing the other is, I would say, a third lesson on how to handle a film which is as complex as this. CHECK OUT: QUEEN Dialogues
The innovative way of building up the back-end of the love story, after it has been torn apart in the first reel is the garnish on the dish!
Rani is readying herself for her marriage which is a day away. Her mehendi ceremony is on and her fiance Vijay (Rajkummar Rao) is sending desperate messages to her. A shy Rani, accompanied by her younger brother, who is always with her, enters a coffee shop in Rajouri, Delhi, close to her home and shyly scolds Vijay for not waiting another day to see her. But Vijay has news for her; news that will change her life and her honeymoon plans (which she has been dreaming of). After years of courtship, Vijay decides that he cannot get married to her, stating that they are different.
Rani's world collapses; she rushes home, after trying unsuccessfully to plead with Vijay to change his decision, and locks herself in her room. The wedding mood is changed to gloom. Her parents keep vigil outside her room the whole night. When she finally emerges in the morning, she tells her parents that she wants to go on her honeymoon, alone!
A request her parents grant. Once in Paris and from there to Amsterdam, Rani is exposed to a whole new world and friends who she would have never otherwise met. She makes it to the Eiffel Tower and other prominent places of interest she and Vijay had decided they would visit... depressed and all alone.
Suddenly, another Vijay comes into her life, Vijaylaxmi (Lisa Haydon).This free-spirited girl who works in the same hotel where Rani is staying a guest befriends Rani and the two hit it off. Opposites attract!
From here, the film is a journey through Rani as she fights off her blues, shakes off Vijay who comes to Paris in search of her, pleading for her forgiveness and the ultimate change from within that sets her free.
Vijay will have to wait till she finishes off her 'honeymoon' and she promises to speak with him in India.
Kangana gives a standout performance handling the subtle changes within Rani with grace. No over-the-top histrionics which we have come to associate with her. This here is a different Kangana. In fact, this here is Rani. From shy and vulnerable, to bold and daring to take life by the scruff of its neck, Kangana's transformation is drastic. But her attitude remains the same. The change comes from within. I can stick my neck out to say that next year's Best Actress Award is anybody's guess. CHECK OUT: QUEEN - Songs Lyrics
Lisa Haydon is a revelation. Just like Rani's father and brother wait longingly for her to come on video-chat, so do you after she leaves the scene. Oh, how you wish she was in the second half. And it is this longing that highlight what I said earlier of how no character overstays their limit. A complete shift in performance from RASCALS; natural and perfect to the 'T'.
The actors who play Rani's roomies in Amsterdam - one from Japan, Russia and France are perfectly cast. Ditto the chef.
I can go on and on.... But I'll stop here.
This Women's Day, go out and celebrate with QUEEN. A movie worth going miles to see!