Mayank Shekhar's review: Vikalp


Direction: Sachin Karande
Cast: Deepal Shaw, Akshay Singh
Rating: *

Vikalp means alternative — I had none, I realised. So I walked right into this movie. It’s a lot like the way the heroine here chooses to crash her hand straight into her bathroom mirror. The glass cracks.

Her knuckles bleed. She yells, “Bhaad mein jao (go to hell)” to her parents she never knew. Bhaad meni jao: pseudo-intellectuals, modern type people who get women out of homes to insult them. Bhaad mein jao: beauty pageants. Eh? Bhaad mein jao, sabse pehle (go to hell, first), she finally slips in, the BMC that can’t fix potholes!
You’ve got to admire the aimless rant. It’s adorable.

The girl by the way has just been humiliated out of her IT job. She is a ‘self-taught’ tech genius from a “Marathi medium (school),” capable of breaking all firewalls and computer security systems. She has her uses. Her boss, you suppose, is a “casteist, racist, double standard, bashtard”. When he fires her, the camera zooms in on his teeth.

Her supervisor finds her a place at a “multinational R&D firm” in Bangkok. She moves to Bangkok. And straight into a  decrepit suburban Mumbai apartment (poor budgets, you see). Her company’s a front for a terror network. Her passport is taken away.  There is absolutely no mystery. She’s trapped. You always saw this coming. But then, as her friend explains, “If you can’t avoid the rape, then enjoy it.” It’s an “angrezi kahavat” (an English proverb),” she suggests. Apparently.

While the heroine’s on the run, her boyfriend — first seen in green velvet jacket over a green sleeveless vest,
getting whooped by his parents — walks around Patpong with a Bacardi Breezer, humming a Sufi song, imagining his girl coming out of the ocean.

The terrorists, the heroine is up against, are ruthless though. They offer you strong lessons on the “borderless Internet ki duniya (world).” The main one wants to win the world with “Internet ki taakat (strength).” Osama bin Laden is one of his clients. You’re never sure if this stuff is mock ironic or plain moronic; depends on the way you see it, I guess.

Another dude swings and sways his long hair, looking all deadly and dangerous. Hee ha ha ha. That actor’s Nirmal Pandey (Bandit Queen, Is Raat Ki Subah Nahin). He is no more. This may have been his last film, unfortunately. Sad. Rest in peace, Nirmal. Rest in peace, of course, this flick.


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