Director: Milap Zaveri
Starring: Riteish Deshmukh, Sidharth Malhotra, Tara Sutaria & Rakul Preet Singh
Written by: Milap Zaveri
MARJAAVAAN is the story of love and revenge which has the backdrop of the underbelly of Mumbai. The protagonist of our film is Raghu (Sidharth Malhotra), who as an infant was adopted and raised by the local don Narayan Anna. Raghu grows loyal and faithful to Anna and also becomes his most dangerous weapon. But jealous of Raghu is Narayan Anna’s biological son Vishnu (Riteish Deshmukh), who is also a 3 foot midget. He detests Raghu, not only because of his insecurity but also because he thinks his own father loves Raghu more than him. In the locality in which our story is set in, there is also a brothel where Arzoo (Rakul Preet Singh) works. She is in love with Raghu but Raghu doesn’t feel the same about her. One day, entering their locality is Zoya (Tara Sutaria), a mute girl from Kashmir, trying to recruit local kids for a music competition which is to take place in Kashmir. The moment Raghu laid eyes on her, he falls for her. He helps her recruit the kids and that is how the bond between them grows and even she starts liking Raghu. She teaches Raghu about love and music and tries to make him a better man along the way. But then, one day, Zoya witnesses a murder committed by Vishnu. Vishnu informs Narayan Anna about it who in turn tells Raghu to finish off Zoya! In order to save Zoya, he decides to get her to safety but then Anna’s men catch them. Vishnu as a punishment decides to kill both of them and the kids who were trying to participate in the competition. But Narayan Anna intervenes and gives Raghu a choice to kill Zoya himself and he and the kids will be spared. What happens next forms the rest of the film.
The film clearly belongs to the 70s, 80s or the 90s era. The screenplay is written the same way and so is the treatment. A few scenes in the film are nice enough but the film lacks consistency. The standout scene has to be the one in the hospital and the interval point is intriguing as well. The film is at the same time riddled with clichés and stereotypes and offers nothing new to the table. It’s a potboilers of love, drama, action and revenge all packed into one and at a point it gets too much to take in. While a lot of things are happening in the film, the runtime could have been reduced significantly as well. There were so many different ways the film could go and it had the potential but fails to fulfil it.
Technically, the film is alright. Production values are great. Cinematography by Nigam Bomzan is fine, even here a lot of shots look like they’ve been straight picked from the 80s era. Editing by Maahir Zaveri is good. The production design and the costume design were both good. The music works in the film but Tum Hi Aana is the pick of the lot. The writing could have been slightly better, especially the dialogues.
Performance wise the film is decent. Siddharth Malhotra gives his best here and it is visible on the screen. He makes a good impact. Malhotra is especially good in the action of the movie. Riteish Deshmukh is superb as the antagonist, he makes the right impact from the first time he comes on the screen right till the end. Tara Sutaria has a brief role compared to Siddharth and Riteish but has a great screen presence and is endearing. Rakul Preet Singh does well and offers great support. Ravi Kishan doesn’t have much to do. Shaad Randhawa does great as Malhotra’s friend Mazhar. He makes a great impact. The rest of the cast offer able support.
Director Milap Milan Zaveri sticks to his belief of making a mass entertainer that he set out to achieve and gets to the end with the right conviction. But it is his writing that lets him down in the overall totality of the film.
At the box-office
The film has taken a decent start and will be patronized heavily in the mass centres of the country.