There is a huge risk involved when one attempts to touch a cult classic like Kahaani. The original thriller starring Vidya Balan and Nawazuddin Siddiqui was hauntingly beautiful. It had the perfect blend of the elements that make for a fantastic cinema (and not a movie). Intriguing, interesting and gripping, Kahaani had us hooked with its narration, performances and brilliant editing. It indeed was a risk to take the tale forward because the expectations from the sequence—as indeed the parallels drawn from the first installment—were overwhelming. Director Sujoy  Ghosh took that risk, but unfortunately he has not quite succeeded in raising the drama to the next level. In fact, Kahaani 2 is nowhere close to the first installment. ALSO READ: Kahaani2’s Vidya Balan’s elegant style sense will give you major #TraditionalOutfitGoals! 

STORY:

Vidya Sinha (Balan) leads a normal middle class life with her specially-abled daughter Mini. Life takes a vicious turn when Mini goes missing. Soon the lady discovers that her child is kidnapped and the lady herself meets with an accident. Steps in inspector Indrejeet Singh (Arjun Rampal) to solve this puzzle only to recognise Vidya as someone he knows as a person with a certain background. The lady’s credentials and her identity reveal that she a completely different individual (as opposed to what our Macho cop perceived her to be). Singh then lays his hands on a diary that could possibly hold the key to decoding the mystery….

What went wrong? (NO, WE DON’T INTEND TO INSERT SPOLIER ALERT AHEAD DISCLAIMER for what follows are the clichés of a masala potboiler)

The first half is promising. It’s such a delight to watch yet another (seemingly) gripping and engaging tale unfolding with tremendous pace. The leading lady’s bravado and a child abuse case interttvines to ensure that you are totally invested. You get that something-sinister-is-watching-you-constantly feel as the movie moves towards the interval. One applauds the writing, the direction and the editing. Vidya Balan brings her A game to the table yet again and Arjun Rampal tries his best to look earnest. One looks forward to enjoy the second half, anticipating that this one would be a crisp endeavour with a nail biting climax. But the second half lets you down! ALSO READ: Arjun Rampal or Arun Gawli? Daddy First Look will leave you confused and curious 

Remember what worked for Kahaani, the original production? Even after leaving the theatre the plot stayed with you. In fact, some were invested to the extent that they started connecting the dots to comprehend the film in its entirety? That compulsive backward sketching had made Kahaani such a delicious treat. Kahaani 2 on the other hand is marred by clichés so much so that you wonder if the second half was directed by the same filmmaker. The pace slackens, the performances look forced and the logic goes out of the window.  And slowly—and quite surely—this one turns out to be a yawn fest!

To elaborate much on the film would be like spoiling the broth. But even if you put the memories of the first film aside and don’t bother to compare, this one doesn’t quite hold your interest. Vidya Balan’s terrific performance and Arjun Rampal’s attempt to give an intense character demand a better second half, for sure.

Our rating 2.5 stars