Cast: Vidya Balan, Arjun Rampal, Naisha Khanna, Jugal Hansra, Tota Roychoudhury, Kharaj Mukherjee, Kaushik Sen
Director: Sujoy Ghosh
KAHAANI 2 STORY: Vidya Sinha (Vidya Balan) has only one obsession in life. She wants to see her teenage daughter Mini, who is paralysed waist-downwards, walk again. But, is this scenario as obvious as it seems? Or is Vidya an impersonator of Durga Rani Singh from Kalimpong, who is wanted for kidnapping and murder?
Two features define Sujoy Ghosh's Kahaani 2. One is Vidya Balan's compelling pivotal performance. The other is the steady, unfussy, unobtrusive camerawork that is at sharp variance with the frenzied filming style usually preferred by makers of Bollywood thrillers.
This sequel made after a gap of four years is a whodunit that definitely serves up intrigue, but fails to keep a tight grip on proceedings throughtout its duration. So unlike the first part, that hit the ground running and set a benchmark in the genre, this one lacks the shark-bite. But you do invest in Vidya Sinha, a harrowed, working mum from Chandan Nagar in West Bengal and her handicapped teenage daughter, who like most middle-class people overcome hurdles to go through the daily grind. So much so, that when Mini goes missing and Vidya meets an accident, there is a sense of void. Enter, Indrajit(Arjun Rampal), the cop-on-the-case, who is the first one to discover that the woman in a coma resembles Durga(Vidya Balan again!), a school clerk from Kalimpong, who is a fugitive-on-the-run.
Here it is important to say that the film works because Vidya the mother or Durga the murderer are both believable and solid characters. As is the cop piecing the mystery together. And, to give out anything more about the plot is unfair.
Shot majorly at night and on real locations, the film has the authentic texture. If you fell in love with Kolkata in the 2012 outing, you will love Kalimpong here. The background score gives stomach-knots (as it must) and the camera work is good.
Vidya, shorn of make-up and glamour breezes through her dual role in autopilot mode. Arjun impresses as the cop hankering for a promotion and is believable as the husband. If you have an appetite for thrillers (albeit, with some flaws) give this one a try.
Watch the trailer of Kahaani 2: