Some films just affect you so much that you’re mentally unable to get out of them and Anurag Kashyap’s UGLY is one such masterpiece.
Kashyap’s known for his crime, drama, neo-noir & psychological thrillers that have changed the dimension of Indian cinema over the past few years. He’s one of the few filmmakers who believe in staying true to their story. Some of his films haven’t seen the light of the day, whereas some have never seen the box office numbers. Even then, this man has never compromised on his scripts. His latest venture UGLY would nauseate you, but at the same time you’ll go home wondering how brilliant a filmmaker Kashyap is. It’s a simple film filled with too many complications and twists along with confusion, guilt, disgust and shock, all thanks to the insecurities and selfish traits of the beings involved in those situations.
Rahul (Rahul Bhat) is an aspiring actor who’s been struggling to make it big since a long time now and in between this journey his marriage broke off. So as per the custody agreement, he’s only allowed to meet his 10-year-old daughter Kali (Anshika Shrivastava) on Saturdays. One fine Saturday, when Rahul and Kali go out to spend some time together, he stops by his casting agent Chaitanya’s (Vineet Kumar Singh) place, to probably grab a script and asks Kali to stay in the car till he’s back, later realising that she’s nowhere to be seen. And the story spreads out.
As soon as this happens, as viewers you’ll try to predict what’s going to happen next, but it’s an Anurag Kashyap film, he’s never going to give you the easy way out. We’re then introduced to a number of characters who are equally important till the very end. Shalini (Tejaswini Kolhapure), Rahul’s ex wife and Kali’s mother, followed by Shoumik Bose (Ronit Roy), Shalini’s second husband and Rahul’s rival from college. Siddhant (Siddhant Kapoor), Shalini’s useless brother and inspector Jadhav (Girish Kulkarni), who rather than lodging a complaint of a missing child was more interested in knowing why actors changed their names to come into the industry or how Kali’s phone showed Rahul’s picture whenever he called her up. As the search begins and characters begin to unfold with the help of flashbacks, you won’t be able to predict who did what and how it’s just a vicious circle in the end.
Almost everything is perfect about this film, but the first applaud would undoubtedly go to Mr.Kashyap for once again creating something like this. I still can’t believe he wrote this in seven days-what a genius. It’s actually commendable to see him implement his writing with this perfection. Right from suspense to dark humour to the nerve-wracking end, he’s hit the right chord every single time. The camerawork is impressive, the background score by Brian McOmber is breathtaking and Aarti Bajaj’s brainy editing too deserves great accolades.
UGLY wouldn’t have been ‘THIS’ effective, if the casting wouldn’t have been perfect. And once again, Mukesh Chhabra’s bang on. From Anshika Shrivastava, the 10-year-old daughter to the sub inspectors, Chhabra has done wonders. Rahul Bhat, Tejaswini Kolhapure, Ronit Roy, Vineet Singh and Girish Kulkarni compliment the script so well that you can’t even imagine anyone else in this film apart from them. It would seem like a documentary if you wouldn’t know it’s a feature film, they’re that intriguing and good. They’ve all been given their screen-space and they’ve all got their moments in which they’ve excelled.
There are a few scenes where you’ll laugh your guts out and that’s because of the brilliance of the actors. Those scenes wouldn’t have been funny if the pitching of the actors wouldn’t have been spot on.
Highlight: A scene where Kulkarni croons verses of an item song and the way Roy responds to that-with a straight face, that’s sheer timing and that’s exactly what brings out the humour.
Overall, UGLY is not entirely about the kidnap, it’s about the ugliness present within people and how insensitive, ignorant, inhuman and disgusting they’ve become.
There are moments in the film where you’ll wonder what’s going on and you’ll be flooded with questions like:
Why isn’t this girl’s mother worried about her daughter? Why the hell is she thinking about her marital life right now? Why did this girl’s Mama (Uncle) make a ransom call? Did he kidnap her? Why is her biological father busy sleeping with this other woman (Rakhee, played by Suvreen Chawla), who’s also making a ransom call?
Why is this Rahul busy worrying about his face rather than being worried about his fucking daughter?
Everything’s going to confuse you till the very end-you’ll presume and try to guess who the kidnapper was, but you won’t be able to do that because the end is heartbreaking and grievous. It’ll make everyone realise, how ignoring your responsibilities and your own children can be a big threat. Though there are a few dull moments in the film, including Surveen Chawla’s character line , Siddhant Kapoor’s angle and the jewellery shop robbery, but the end’s going to tremble your heart and you’ll go home questioning yourself-
How sometimes we become so selfish that we tend to let go off the most important things in life, even though it’s nowhere related to us. This is Anurag Kashyap’s best since ‘Black Friday,’ watch it at any cost, it’s a mirror for all of us.
Lastly, this one song called ‘Papa‘ sung by Shilpa Rao will move you to tears and especially because of the visuals(Film version)-Goosebumps.