‘Thank you’ – uttered by Kangna Ranaut to Rajkumar Rao in the climax scene will never be the same after watching the movie, Queen. These two words sum up the entire film and you just can’t resist expressing gratitude to director Vikas Bahl for giving us those wonderful 146 minutes of catching up with Rani, the ‘Queen’.
When it comes to films based on a particular character, the choice has been quite limited. Saeed Akhtar Mirza, popularly known as the director of TV series, ‘Nukkad’ seemed to be fond of naming his films after his lead characters. For instance, Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyu Aata Hai? (Naseeruddin Shah), Salim Langde Pe Mat Ro (Pawan Malhotra), Arvind Desai Ki Ajeeb Dastaan (Dilip Dhavan), and Mohan Joshi Haazir Ho! (Naseeruddin Shah). Furthermore, there are films like Mrinal Sen’s Bhuvan Shome (Utpal Dutt), Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s Anand (Rajesh Khanna), Guddi and Mili (Jaya Bhaduri).
Well, there were films like ‘Julie’, ‘My friend Pinto’, ‘Barfi’ and many masala potboilers like ‘Rowdy Rathore’ named after the lead characters, but somewhere down the line, we seem to have lost touch in making films completely based on a particular character. Phew! Pardon the digression, but the point one is trying to drive home is that you watch films like Guddi, Mili, Anand, or Bhuvan Shome, these characters refuse to leave you. Vikas Bahl’s ‘Queen’ achieves this with awe-inspiring perfection.
The character, Vijay Laxmi played by Lisa Haydon makes you yearn for an encore in the second half (just like the kid brother of Rani and her father hope for). She is a perfect combination of sensuality and sensibility or rather the cliché of beauty and brains. Rajkumar Rao delivers yet another commendable performance and the best part about his performance is that you actually start hating him as the movie progresses. All said and done, Queen is Kangna’s film, right from the opening peppy number by Amit Trivedi to the closing credits.
One more digression here (how about not talking about Queen at all here?) When the climax of Sholay was being shot, Sanjeev Kumar felt so bad for Jaya Bhaduri’s character, Radha that he requested the director to include a scene where he can hug her while she mourns the death of Jai. Obviously, the request was never considered, but now that you’ve read this, you’ll be able to relate to what Sanjeev Kumar meant when you watch the scene where Rajkumar Rao’s character, Vijay ditches Rani at a café. The way Kangna emotes during this particular scene and the wonderful montage of her drunken scene are scenes that will go on to become part of acting textbooks. Well, she reminds of the coming-of-age story of Guddi. Oops! There I go again, talking about my favourite classic films. Blame it on Queen.