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Maatr  : Vigilante Mom
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Friday, April 21, 2017
Thriller
Ashtar Sayed
Raveena Tandon, Divya Jagdale, Madhur Mitta

The gang rape of a mother and daughter on a highway in UP may have been the real-life trigger. And when the perpetrators are led by a corrupt Chief Minister’s son, it’s a reality that police investigation will be heavily compromised. But this is no slick, sensitive slice-of-life cinema.

 

The credit titles curiously state that it’s Shree Ram ki kahani. One doesn’t know where the good lord fits in when school teacher Vidya Chauhan drives home with her daughter Tia and takes an unfortunate turn that upturns her life.

 

The lack of sophistication, style or subtlety in the storytelling is evident from the first crass introduction of the bad boys with liquor, cocaine and lewd behaviour. The teacher and her daughter soon get a full blast of it in graphic detail. 

 

For Vidya who recovers from her physical injuries rather quickly, there’s only Ravi, her insensitive husband to turn to. Soon enough he tells her at the dining table, our marriage is over, will you pass me the ketchup please? But Vidya has artist-friend Ritu for sympathy and a roof over her head. Ritu also flares up at the cops on her behalf inan oft-seen police station sequence. One dare not ask logical questions like, how does Ritu know that the men the cops have rounded up are not the real culprits?

 

Astar Sayed directs a vigilante film where Vidya takes on the rapists in amateurish ways, especially the one in a five-star hotel room that’s quite disgusting. But cheer this feminist theme as Vidya drives around town with impunity though the chief criminal and the cops have sniffed that she’s involved. 

 

Madhur Mittal as the Chief Minister’s son is repulsive, as he’s supposed to be. Raveena Tandon looks gorgeous playing the avenging mother.

 

One wishes there was something in the screenplay and direction too that one could term ‘gorgeous’.

 

For a film that turns an important subject into a crude cinematic experience, Maatr gets a 2* rating.

 

Reviewed by
Bharathi S Pradhan

Senior Journalist & Author
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