Mardaani 2 brings back the brave SP Shivani Shivaji Roy back in action (The first Mardaani was released in 2014) and this time she’s dealing with an impudent, reckless young rapist in Kota, who takes sadistic measure out of raping and killing ‘smart’ women.
His target is the girls who behave equal to men, and his justification is that he’s punishing them for not staying within their ‘aukaat’. The director of the film, Gopi Puthran (who’s also the writer of the film)’s intention is right. He wants to get behind the psyche of a rapist, and his deep rotted misogyny.
Gopi’s antagonist is a 21 year old Sunny (Vishal Jethwa) who is a hitman by profession, and rapes and kills women on the side for pleasure. Sunny is proud of his hobby and thinks he’s totally justified in his misogyny.
A back story fleetingly narrated tells us more about the character. Soon as Shivani takes up his case, Sunny develops a special fascination for her and makes it a personal battle. Rani Mukherjee, is as fierce and as focussed as the earlier Mardaani. But the lack of a good plot and implausible situations lets down the film.
Gopi might have chosen well by showing that a seemingly harmless boy next door is also capable of the heinous crime, but unfortunately, all that might have seemed great on paper doesn’t really come together well. There is also some media bashing done through Shivani, which seems inappropriate and unnecessary in the set-up.
Jethwa (who’s a TV actor)'s character might have been far more effective, if he was portrayed as a really smart bloke who manages to outsmart Shivani, instead of handing situations on a platter for him.
While Gopi’s intention to showcase the gross inequality between men and women is laudable, one wished that his story was written with less laziness. While the chilling first scene of the film sets the tone right, soon after it falters as if the story is written to make the goings-on convenient for the villain of the piece.
The second half and the climax further brings the film down as the lazy screenplay makes it look shoddy and hurriedly put together. There are some really nice moments in the film, like the one when Shivani is speaking to a TV anchor and tells him some harsh truths about how society still perceives women.
Wish Shivani had a better story and direction to back her in this one. Also, if she collaborates with her team members better than trying to do it all, it would be more believable.