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Monica – movie review

The politics of murder


Monica - movie review

The story of Monica is about the stormy and turbulent relationship between a scheming politician, aspiring to be the Chief Minister of a state in North India and a political journalist aiming to achieve the star status in her field of work.

Monica is about love, lust, conspiracy, scams, deception and murder and it is ingeniously constructed by Sushen Bhatnagar who has penned the script and directed the drama.

Bollywood has seen several films centred around women journalists like the ones done by Sridevi in Roop Ki Rani, Choron Ka Raaja, Konkona Sen Sharma in Page 3, others starring Dimple Kapadia, Kangana Ranaut and the last memorable flick about Rani Mukherjee in No One Killed Jessica. Yes, this one seems a little different, as the protagonist in this film is diverse from the ones we have seen before.

Monica is not just about a media person, but also looks at the various roles that this ambitious lady portrays in her life – as the wife of an alcoholic, mother of an illegitimate child, a motivated and a fearless lady, who dramatically turns into a person scared for her life…

Monica (Divya Dutta) learns from her childhood that there are two classes of people in the world – the exploiters and the exploited. This small-town school girl experiences it from being a victim of child abuse in a cinema hall in Lucknow, to meeting thick skinned media personalities while growing up, to compromising with a powerful politician to achieve her goal.

These episodes in her stormy life have been depicted in a rather unusual manner by director Sushen Bhatnagar with sincerity and commitment.

Monica was not ready just to seeing herself being exploited. She was prepared to barter. She gets married to a simpleton Raj Jaitley (Rajit Kapoor) for love and have a family. She sweet-talks her way through a powerful person Aseem Ray (Tinnu Anand) to achieve her aim. This contemporary lady goes to the extent of seducing Pamela Garewal (Kittu Gidwani) for power. She surrendered to a wily politician Chandrakant Pandit (Ashutosh Rana) for all this and more – just for what?

To achieve what she wanted to be in her life. At one point she is becomes a fugitive. But was it worth the struggle? The writer of this bizarre film demonstrates that ambitions are not only limited to men; even women can be overly ambitious! Well?

An usual stuff presented in a very unusual manner is the unconventional narration of the story which goes back and forth, journeying through several phases in Monica’s life through a lawyer (Yashpal Sharma) which unfolds in the courtroom drama.

Ashutosh Rana conveys a lot through his eyes effectively portraying a scheming politician. How these politicians are cool even in the hottest of the situations. Yes that’s what is displayed by this master actor. Divya Dutta adds one more role enacted with finesse to the list of her past films.

Rajit Kapoor as Monica’s laid back husband is okay. Dadhi Pandey, as Ashutosh Rana’s confidante, is brilliant, Tinnu Anand and Kittu Gidwani are just rightly given their parts. Yashpal Sharma displays talent with yet another super performance. Kunika, Yateen Karyekar and Saurabh Dubey too do well. The man who portrays the roller of a killer – Ashish Kapoor is very convincing.

There are several instances of similarities inspired from real-life scams and issues. Monica might not appeal to the masses. It is a well made film which will be appreciated by a certain section of the audience.

Cast of Monica:
Divya Dutta – Monica Jaitley
Ashutosh Rana – Chandrakant Pandit
Dadhi Pandey – Sandeep Mishra
Tinu Anand – Assem Ray
Rajit Kapoor – Raj Jaitley
Kittu Gidwani – Pamela Garewal
Yashpal Sharma – Mathur
Kunika – Judge
Saurabh Dubey – Shrikant Vohra
Ashish Kapoor – Killer
Kurush Khodaiji – Killer
Mithilesh Chaturvedi – Defence Lawyer
Yatin Karyekar – M.J

Credits & Crew of Monica:
Director: Sushen Bhatnagar
Story / Writer – Sushen Bhatnagar
Dialogue – Sushen Bhatnagar
Lyricist – Israr Ansari
Music Director – Raju Rao
Cinematography – Chandan Goswami
Editor – Santosh Kumar, Adesh Verma
Background Music – Raju Rao
Sound – Rakesh Ranjan
Costume Designer – Sonia Dhingra
Monica – movie review