Inkaar has great, rusty-yet-chic atmosphere and good performances. But, the story cheats on itself in the last half hour.
On the surface, Inkaar is a story about sexual harassment in the workplace. But a layer under, it is about the inability of ambitious people coming to terms with their feelings, about how they use all resources available at their disposal to mask their complexes (superior and inferior) and insecurities. Does she really, truly believe she is being harassed? Are the devils in her mind perceiving casual flirtation as harassment? Is he flirting only casually? Does he not realise he is trying to evoke something deeper within her? Lovely, murky, gray areas. All rendered redundant by a climax that stands awesome by itself but loses its meaning and makes the film lose face in the context of the film.
To do that to a story that broaches a serious abuse rampant in current times is belittling the issue. But, hey should we hold our directors responsible for taking on social agendas? So, if we take away the responsibility Inkaar makes for an interesting watch till about the last half hour and the last half hour is interesting by itself. It's the fact that they are put together that spoils the taste.
The interest is built and maintained though by all departments. I have always liked the atmosphere Sudhir Mishra creates in his films. They are either set in the rural parts of India or they show the grit of the urban world (except Khoya Khoya Chand which was set in an era long past). Inkaar requires him to stay in the chic world of the cities today and I liked the sepia tone he chose for the film, giving it a dark, edgy feel. Though I don't associate brown with the corporate world. Yet, the camera work contributes to the highly strung atmosphere in the office of an advertising agency. However, the music, though good, seems out of place for the setting.
Also, the back and forth in the story's linearity feels like a cop out. As if the makers weren't confident of pulling it off had it played out linearly. Fortunately, some of the dialogue is good and is even cheeky at times - bringing in the smiles and knowing nods.
I especially enjoyed Arjun Rampal's performance. He brings in the perfect amount of nonchalance to Rahul Verma's demeanour - the kind that a calm, confident man would carry to make you believe that he is not in the wrong. Chitrangda Singh does nothing special except that she looks chic and just right for her part. I absolutely loved Deepti Naval's act - charming, witty, naughty and curious all rolled into one. It's a shame that ultimately her character seems like a cog in the wheel.
Yet, another film where the makers seem to not want to take the concept all the way. Why not make it all about the 'sexual harassment'? Why not make it all about what it really wanted to be about - the part that I cannot give away? Why oh why, lessen the weight of the issue or the depth of emotions?
- meetu, a part of the audience
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