Nishikant Kamat’s “Madaari”

Madaari: Sshhh… Desh So Raha Hai

Hindi | U/A | Drama | 133 minutes | 22 July 2016

Madaari is Nishikant Kamat’s second directorial venture in 2016. His first movie “Rocky Handsome” starring John Abraham did not add much to his portfolio. A closer look at his previous four films will tell you about his association with child characters and their interactions with the main leads (Lai Bhaari, Drishyam, Rocky Handsome and Madaari). Probably that was the reason why the only two characters that were etched rather convincingly in this movie are Nirmal Kumar (Irrfan) and Rohan Goswami (Vishesh Bansal) and so their association works really well.


The movie opens with a middle-aged man along with a kid next to him on a railway platform where no one cares about anyone. The next thing you see (along with title credits) is a series of media reports screaming for attention – with crazy headlines and aggravated tone of news reading – through various accidents, crisis, calamities witnessed by the nation. It is to indicate how quickly the media/common people switch between the calamities with no one having time to even recollect what happened after an accident that was a “Breaking News” that morning. What lies underneath all those calamities are families those lost their loved ones looking for someone to answer their grief- but no one will stand up to question.

“Who has so much time to think about it, Sir? I have a seven-year-old son to take care of” Nirmal Kumar says when his client asks about the tragedies. No one does until it happens to them. This is probably the strongest question that Nishikant Kamat poses in this movie.

“Madaari” is a common man’s angst against the “no-one-can-correct” system that consciously ignored to answer the society of its failings. The path he chose was to be a vigilante and kidnap Home Minister’s son. What is the demand he seeks to fulfill and how he manages to survive forms the crux of the story?

During the most unconvincing climax episode, structure designer of a flyover that killed Nirmal Kumar’s son tells there are no errors in the design stage. The execution is where it all went wrong.” This could as well aptly be adapted to the film itself. “A common man’s revenge against the system” might be the story line that he chose to get an actor of Irrfan’s (no more “Khan”) caliber sign above the dots.

 The attempt to nail “common man” in the audience minds was tried way too hard- “I am a common man. Even I look common” is what Irrfan says.

The biggest success of Madaari is to have Irrfan at the center of it. If not for him, the movie would have gone shambles. But, there are a few scenes where even Irrfan couldn’t help us from dropping off heads in anguish.

The dialogues by Ritesh Shah and cinematography by Avinash Arun were the other positives in this movie. Ritesh did his job well with quotes and questions that extend their relevance beyond the movie but some of them get lost in poor timing. Avinash should be really appreciated for lifting the mood of the film even in the scenes that fell flat on their toes in writing.

Overall, Irrfan once again stands tall in the film that is lost in its own chaos like the world that is lost in its own immeasurable crises.


Cast: Irrfan, Vishesh Bansal, Jimmy Shergill, Tushar Dalvi

Director: Nishikant Kamat | Story: Shailja Kejriwal | Dialogues: Ritesh Shah | Music: Vishal Bharadwaj & Sunny- Inder Bawra | Cinematography: Avinash Arun


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