Movie Review : “Simran”

Arre, poori kahani toh suno!” says Praful Patel (Kangana Ranaut) to her potential husband Sameer (Sohum Shah) in one of the most moving scenes of Hansal Mehta’s Simran. But what is the entire story? The story of this 30-year-old Gujarati divorcee who lives in Atlanta, US, is an adhoori kahani at best. But Kangana Ranaut tries her best to lend Praful the kind of eccentricities and ‘character flaws’ that she deserves. At the end of the film, the only thing you exit the theatre with is Kangana’s effortless performance.

But maybe that is where Simran falls short of expectations. After 2014’s brilliant Queen that helped Kangana turn her career around, we have mostly seen her in roles that have been replete with Kangana-isms, so much so that Kangana ended up overshadowing say, a Tanuja Trivedi (Tanu Weds Manu Returns) or an Alka Singh (Revolver Rani).

The same holds true for her role in Simran too. Praful Patel is so drenched in the mannerisms that we have come to associate with Kangana post Queen, that it is difficult to look at this Gujarati divorcee as a complete person on her own without letting Ranaut take over. But having said that, Simran is elevated above strictly average by Kangana’s performance. If you are willing to sign up for only that when you go into the theatre, you might have a good time. But Simran is hardly a Queen.

Praful works in the housekeeping department of a five-star hotel in Atlanta and begrudgingly lives with her middle-aged parents in the suburbs. Her parents are not happy that she is divorced. Or that she is saving up for her own house. “But how did you get a house for so less,” asks Praful’s colleague. “Minority housing!” comes her response. She unblinkingly responds with a ‘Yes’ when her father taunts her, saying, “Why do you need a house? To bring boyfriends over?

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Simran Movie Review: Kangana Ranaut is brilliant but that is all
ANANYA BHATTACHARYA | NEW DELHI | FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2017
Simran starring Kangana Ranaut and directed by Hansal Mehta is the big Bollywood release today and here is our Simran movie review.
Kangana Ranaut in a poster of Simran
Kangana Ranaut in a poster of Simran
Simran stars Kangana Ranaut as Praful Patel and is directed by Hansal Mehta. It is one of the two big Bollywood releases today, the other being Lucknow Central. Here is our Simran movie review.

Simran Cast: Kangana Ranaut, Hiten Kumar, Kishori Shahane, Sohum Shah

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Simran Director: Hansal Mehta

Simran Rating:4 Star Rating: Recommended4 Star Rating: Recommended (2.5/5)

“Arre, poori kahani toh suno!” says Praful Patel (Kangana Ranaut) to her potential husband Sameer (Sohum Shah) in one of the most moving scenes of Hansal Mehta’s Simran. But what is the entire story? The story of this 30-year-old Gujarati divorcee who lives in Atlanta, US, is an adhoori kahani at best. But Kangana Ranaut tries her best to lend Praful the kind of eccentricities and ‘character flaws’ that she deserves. At the end of the film, the only thing you exit the theatre with is Kangana’s effortless performance.

But maybe that is where Simran falls short of expectations. After 2014’s brilliant Queen that helped Kangana turn her career around, we have mostly seen her in roles that have been replete with Kangana-isms, so much so that Kangana ended up overshadowing say, a Tanuja Trivedi (Tanu Weds Manu Returns) or an Alka Singh (Revolver Rani).

The same holds true for her role in Simran too. Praful Patel is so drenched in the mannerisms that we have come to associate with Kangana post Queen, that it is difficult to look at this Gujarati divorcee as a complete person on her own without letting Ranaut take over. But having said that, Simran is elevated above strictly average by Kangana’s performance. If you are willing to sign up for only that when you go into the theatre, you might have a good time. But Simran is hardly a Queen.

Praful works in the housekeeping department of a five-star hotel in Atlanta and begrudgingly lives with her middle-aged parents in the suburbs. Her parents are not happy that she is divorced. Or that she is saving up for her own house. “But how did you get a house for so less,” asks Praful’s colleague. “Minority housing!” comes her response. She unblinkingly responds with a ‘Yes’ when her father taunts her, saying, “Why do you need a house? To bring boyfriends over?”

That is Praful Patel for you. She wants to achieve, she is way too talented to waste her life in housekeeping, as a character remarks later in the film. She wants to live her life on her own terms, away from the constant nagging of her parents to get married. So one morning she takes off to an all-expense-paid trip to Las Vegas, where her cousin is getting married.

She reaches the gambling table to pursue a guy she is taken by, where a game of baccarat is underway. And thus begins the maze of events that lead to Praful’s downfall.

The good part about Simran is that the narrative is in place early on in the film and whatever comes after it is pretty much via (il)logical progression. Simran touches upon the issue of racism in the US but never quite delves deep into it. Everything else in the film suffers the same fate. The story is dealt with with adequate humour. But it soon veers towards darker territories. Simran starts faltering. It was touted as a thriller. But Simran comes across as neither taut, edge-of-the-seat stuff, nor does it pass off as a light comic caper a la Queen.

The performance of the lead actor in Simran is top notch. The film rests on Kangana’s shoulders and she doesn’t disappoint. She is in form from the word go. But the same cannot be said about the rest of the cast. Everyone else in the film is overshadowed by Kangana, the way director Hansal Mehta might have willed it.

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