Shabri (Movie Review)

Life can be tougher that we can ever imagine in certain alleys and corners of this city. Hundreds of people go through endless struggles just to make ends meet. So a story about a woman stuck in such a situation resorting to murder to avenge the injustice done to her family should ideally hit a nerve. But, alas, Shabri is far from the gripping film it had the potential to be.

Shabri (Eesha Koppikar) runs a flour mill, and has a drunkard father, a self-sacrificing mother and a wayward brother Bandya for family. She is angry at her circumstances and with her brother Bandya, who tries making fast money through seedy matka operations.

The breaking point in Shabri's life comes when her brother Bandya gets into trouble with the cops and eventually dies after being tortured in police custody.

Seething with anger and unable to bear this family tragedy, she kills a cop. Murad (Raj Arjun), a local matka operator who holds a torch for Shabri, tries helping her escape the law and the clutches of the local don. He, in turn, gets murdered and she vows revenge yet again. A movie with all the ingredients for a powerful storyline you would think.

But wait. You want to show me reality? Then show it to me with the real colours of life. When Shabri fights with her brother for stealing her chappals, show me the blue of that Hawai chappal.

When Shabari lovingly reminds her mother that she need not work so hard making aam ka achar, show me the green of that raw mango.

If the whole canvas of the movie is painted in such a depressingly, dull brown colour, through which most people look ugly, you are forced to feel depressed. And no one likes being under that kind of pressure. That eerie background music does not help its cause either.

There are a few brilliant scenes in the film, which actually tempt you to get involved, but unfortunately the film lacks consistency. Koppikar as the tormented but gritty Shabri makes a good attempt. But her desperate effort to look plain and ugly shows.

She is made to look dark with inconsistent make up, but her eyebrows are perfectly plucked at all times. Pradeep Singh Rawat as the main villain is menacing, but his character, like that of the cop (Zakir Hussain), is ambiguous. Husain, however, makes the best of what is offered to him.

There are many questions that raise their ugly (no pun intended) heads here. Like how does Shabri turn out to be a pro shooter? And soon after getting out of the jail, how does she still possess a gun? What is the point of a cop hanging around her, asking her inane questions? And many, many more


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