MOM has the tragedy of Nirbhaya, the problem of PINK, the settings of NH10, the modern kids of Shaitan, the traumatic parents of Talvar and the MOM you hope in your Mother. The movie starts at such high levels, keeps you engaged and interested, but fails in a cliched and flat last half hour; reason why it won’t demand a second viewing, down the years.
The wasted cast
Nawazuddin Siddiqui (terrific as always) is underused, on top of a needless caricature look. It’s great to see talents Abhimanyu Singh and Akshaye Khanna back on screen after long; the latter, though, reduced to the same “eye brows at top floor” expression, leading a police team which spends more time suspecting and tracking nice people than the real culprits. Pakistani actors (roped for revenue reasons) Sajal Ali is good but Adnan Siddiqui is so standard that I missed Sri Devi’s English Vinglish husband Adil Hussain a lot here.
The Sri Devi show
Sri Devi doesn’t miss anyone though as she carries the film boldly on her shoulders. The mom whom we saw in 1990s, reducing their lives to filling bottles of water from Aquaguard, depending on husband even to chase a lizard, is seen here as one who stretches the limit for her child. You feel for Sri Devi in many scenes – when she is ignored by her daughter, the hospital scenes and when she calls her husband to come back.
MOM will be remembered for three things. Sri Devi cruising at age 53, the shameless state of the country and how modern kids are shaping up under the weight of money – showered by parents to compensate for lack of parenting time.
Aside Singapore, there won’t be any place in the world where a mother will be at ease if her teen daughter is out for a ‘cardiac arresting combo’ – Valentine’s night party at a Farmhouse!
Surrounded by a generation, who don’t repent sending porn clips during classes, carry high end mobiles, ride on high end bikes, don’t respect a loving (step) mom, continue to party even when a teacher is panicking for her missing daughter, smoke, drink and dope.
Best scenes of the movie
If your daughter has such brash teens around her, then the ultimate shot of the movie – top view of a black SUV roaming the streets, black dogs barking, AR Rahman’s music haunting, the car stops for the devils to exchange places, then keeps moving, riding the ghastly crime in it, the door opens, the girl is thrown out, one of the rapists come out, kick her into a drain – will haunt you long. The other outstanding scenes include the sinister revenge planning and execution. Till near the two hour mark.
I wish debutant director Ravi Udyawar, had detailed some of the important scenes more – the lead to the crime act and first three revenge stories. Took more time and added more tension. It would have been great had the fourth revenge story been shown where the culprit is tricked into a trap. The movie grip around the time, you are wondering how an unsuspecting mother can execute such a sinister plot with ease, and you leave the hall a tad disappointed with it’s amateurish 1980s climax scenes.
You do leave with another message in mind though – to add to Pink’s ‘No means No’. It goes ‘Galat aur bahut galat me aapko ek chunna ho, to aap kya chunoge?’. When the law fails, you just can’t sit tight and let society run course. Rapists deserve to be castrated. Killing would be too easy a death for a crime where the victim and family, keeps sufferring lifelong.
Rating: 3.25/5 (Definite one time watch, with your teen child)