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Damini - Lightning (1993)

 -  Drama  -  30 April 1993 (India)
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 1,023 users  
Reviews: 16 user | 1 critic

The theme revolves around the character Damini who represents truth and innocence. After her marriage in renowned wealthy family, Damini happens to see a cruel act done by her ... See full summary »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Meenakshi Sheshadri ...
Damini Gupta
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Tinnu Anand ...
Shekhar's Uncle
Sulabha Arya ...
Shekhar's aunt
Suhas Bhalekar
...
Govind
Anu Dhawan
Vijayendra Ghatge ...
Inspector Kadam
Rohini Hattangadi ...
Mrs. Sumitra Gupta (Shekhar's mom)
...
Shekhar Gupta
...
Himself
...
Mr. Gupta (Shekhar's dad)
Viju Khote ...
Mangesh
Prajakta Kulkarni ...
Urmi - Maid Servant
Achyut Potdar ...
Commissioner of Police
...
Indrajit Chaddha (Scheming Lawyer)
Edit

Storyline

The theme revolves around the character Damini who represents truth and innocence. After her marriage in renowned wealthy family, Damini happens to see a cruel act done by her brother-in-law. She wants the victim to get justice, but the family including her husband oppose her, which leads her to leave the house. Soon she is helped by a drunkard, an ex-advocate, who helps her in all respect to reach to her aim and therefore justice. Written by gavin@sunny_deol2009@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Drama

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Release Date:

30 April 1993 (India)  »

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Aamir Khan plays a cameo. See more »

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Spoofed in Phata Poster Nikhla Hero (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

The power of a common woman and her honesty
1 October 2007 | by (Fraggle Rock) – See all my reviews

In my opinion 'Damini' is Rajkumar Santoshi's best work to date. Meenakshi Sheshadri gives a powerful and flawless performance in what can be described as a role of a lifetime, a part every actress would only dream for. However, the actress decided to call it quits because, rumour had it, she didn't win the best actress award. She only did a handful of films to keep up with her other commitments.

Damini is a simple honest young lady who lives with her poor parents and sister. To save her parents from misery, Damini's elder sister elopes with an alcoholic. A wealthy businessman Shekhar sets his eyes on Damini and falls in love. The two get married but Damini's in-laws keep their distant. A lonely Damini develops a close relationship with the young housemaid Urmi. During the holi festival, the whole household celebrate the colour and music with visitors. Damini's brother-in-law and his three friends gang-rape Urmi. A helpless Damini witnesses the horror and she desperately seeks help from Shekhar. But they're too late and Damini faints from the shock. Shekhar's brother and co dump Urmi's ravaged body in the gutter. When Damini is conscious, she wonders about Urmi and Shekhar assures her that Urmi's fine and receiving medical attention in the hospital but suddenly the police arrive and want to interrogate Damini. Shekhar begs Damini to 'lie' for the sake of the family honour. But Damini never lied in her life...

Definitely an innovative screenplay and Santoshi deserves full marks as a director especially for the way he builds up the tension without going over the top (in most cases). However, the courtroom sequences tend to be a little too dramatic.

There are very few songs but they provide a nice break and are melodious and pleasant.

Rishi Kapoor does well in a role with shades of gray. Same goes for Kulbushan Kharbanda. In a very brief role, Sunny Deol too is good (though he should have tried not to be too loud). Amrish Puri does well but his character is slightly caricatured. Ditto for Paresh Rawal.

But, 'Damini' is a one woman show and it rests entirely on Meenakshi Sheshadri's powerful performance. The actress is amazing and she finally gets a role that does full justice to her immense talent. Known to be one of the finest dancers (and yes, here too she dances with grace and energy), with 'Damini' she's proved to be one of the finest actresses of India. It would have been easy for an actress to mess up the role but Sheshadri portrays Damini's strength and vulnerability through her innocence and sincerity with gusto.

'Damini' is also a socially relevant film about the power of one. How the power of one voice can make a difference, how honesty is always best policy (as the truth shall prevail), to do what's right and always fight against injustice.


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