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Kahaani
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Reviews & Ratings for
Kahaani More at IMDbPro »

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136 out of 144 people found the following review useful:

A rare combination of performance, script, direction, and aesthetics that will leave you stunned

10/10
Author: ayanpal1 from India
9 March 2012

Leave your bag of popcorn outside the theater. You would honestly not have the time to crunch it as you watch this fantastic film with bated breath. For Kahaani is a ride so thrilling, your mind would be tripping with a million possibilities, even as your tongue invariably ends up either tied, or hanging in the air with anticipation.

Kahaani is essentially the story of a heavily pregnant London based Tamil woman's search for her missing Bengali husband in Kolkata, underplayed exuberantly by Vidya Balan. The supporting cast comprises of a helpful cop Parambrata, a selfish detective - Siddiqui, an eccentric life insurance agent - Saswata, and a bhadralok Police officer - Khwaraj, and last but not the least, of a 300+ year old city - Kolkata seeped in the throes of celebrating the mother of all festivals - Durga Puja.

The film unfolds like the pages of a gripping novel by Agatha Christie or Sherlock Holmes and is shot like that of an Alfred Hitchcock or a Satyajit Ray. Using real people, places, and situations to underline the nuances of the story is a task that's handled brilliantly by director Sujoy Ghosh (also the co writer) whose recent claim to shame - an abysmal Aladdin, or a horrendous Home Delivery shall soon be forgotten just as Madhur Bhandarkar's debut dud was.

In addition to the sterling performances and the plot is the terrific technical support. Be it Amitabh Bacchan's rendition of Tagore's 'Ekla Chalo Re', the background songs (mostly of RD Burman), playing innocently as the characters travel the length and breadth of the city, the costumes by Sabyasachi, the 'just right and yet dramatic' background score, the non-condescending cinematography that captures the city as if it were a character, and the supreme screenplay with a spattering of real Bengali, act as just the right spices to turn this into a delicious dish, that's both exotic as well as commonplace.

Watch this film to experience something so satiating, you would surely ask for more (a rare for a thriller!). I give this a 10/10 not just because this is one of the best thrillers ever made in India, but definitely one of the best films to have ever come out of Bollywood. Kudos to the whole team! Trust me! Ami Sotthi Bolcchi!

P.S: Please do not discuss the story with anyone else, unless they have watched this film.

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69 out of 82 people found the following review useful:

Brilliant script followed with top notch direction,editing, cinematography and performances..!!

10/10
Author: Rafnas from India
9 March 2012

Now this is some movie..Brilliant script followed with top notch direction,editing, cinematography and performances..Engaging suspense thriller..There seems only one ACTRESS in Bollywood at present..She was just too excellent..But the script was the show stealer..One of the best ever climax I've watched in Bollywood..Will blow away your minds..

After watching the movie one will definitely doubt whether this is the same director who has given duds like 'Home Delivery' & 'Aladdin'. But he has given one of the finest cinemas in Bollywood with his latest flick. He has shown the true Bengal as one of the characters in this movie. Really splendid to watch some of the scenes shot in the city

Vidya Balan is giving her best to date in all his recent movies. She hasn't failed yet. One blessed actress she is for the industry. No doubt even if she collects a national award every coming year. such a talented actress. So brave to chose such difficult scripts and make it look like cakewalk in the end is just amazing.

All the characters in the movie have done justice to their roles. Every one complementing each other, the script the story & the direction. The climax is just so powerful and will give you goosebumps. Not seen like in Bollywood before.

Don't miss out this Masterpiece..!! A must watch movie for all.!!

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60 out of 72 people found the following review useful:

The refreshing combination of Parambrata and Balan and the motley of emotions and the ease with which they exude them in "Kahaani" make for an outstanding watch.

8/10
Author: Partha PPD from Kolkata
8 March 2012

Setu's account of Kolkata is delightedly sincere and not superfluous cinematography - the dynamic colours and the simplicity of the artless lanes of Kolkata, admiringly, have not been lost in rhetoric black and white. The same forthrightness has mirrored to a huge extent in Suresh Nair and Sujoy Ghosh's masterful and impressive narration of Bagchi's fable of lost and deeply lost until found.

Vidya Bagchi's (Vidya Balan) hunt for her lost husband Arnab Bagchi (Indraneil Sengupta) brings her down to Kolkata from London. With a seven-month old baby magnifying her power, an infinite exploration of the byways of Kolkata with the help of a local policeman Satyoki Sinha (Parambrata Chattopadhyay) begins. Disordered links and remainders of Vidya's past conversations with Arnab are her fragile hopes. Undeterred, the firewall specialist rummages through the tightly encrypted codes of the mystery, webbed by even more securely encrusted faces.

The refreshing combination of Parambrata and Balan and the motley of emotions and the ease with which they exude them in "Kahaani" make for an outstanding watch. Balan's ability to tailor her sentiments - sympathy, anger and despair - multiplies the strength of her character. The swiftness of the movie leaves no time for the audience to mentally prepare for an upcoming situation. While Vidya accepts herself as "Bidya"in the City of Joy, gifts a chocolate to the kid in the lodge and breaks the lock of National Data Centre; the contract killer Bob Biswas (Saswata Chatterjee) playfully murders people and Khan (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) smokes out his dedication towards his work besides a mouthful of white air.

Just when a wide array of emotions are at their peak and the frantic search is riding high, Amitabh Bachhan's rendition of Tagore's famous song "Jodi tor dak shune" transfers the mood to a completely different level. The festive mood of the city, the preceding and the succeeding of it, the red of sindoor and the expressions of the idols of Durga have been phenomenally well-utlised in the movie.

Balan is a breeze of fresh air in Bollywood, which is suffering from the curves of furniture heroines and "Kahaani", another robust step after the recent "The Dirty Picture" towards reinforcing the position of heroines in a traditionally hero-driven Bollywood. The subtlety with which the soul of the city has been interlaced in the screenplay, while not losing grasp on the flow of the story even for a moment, is a testimony of effectual storytelling.

There is not a single scene in the movie where Parambrata has been overshadowed by the presence of Balan. His acting skills are distinctly sharp and flowing. Sujoy Ghosh's choice of actors for the various characters in "Kahaani" has made an immense contribution towards the kind of impact it leaves on the viewers long after they abandon the theatre.

After all, "Shotti" sounds better as "Shotti", not "Sotti".

The climax, even though prudent and reasonably well-baked, is slightly dramatic and seems to conclude the movie before clearly justifying the actions of Vidya and Satyoki, especially the latter. The momentum of the story towards the end beats its own record and the circumstances merging with the mood of the city seems to be not so much of a coincidence.

Bagchi's "Kahaani" is one of those that would define tougher standards for the forthcoming Fridays. Why on earth would you like to miss the benchmark?

Watch it. Definitely!

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51 out of 57 people found the following review useful:

Vidya Balan rocks in Kahaani!

9/10
Author: GaneshKSalian from Bahrain
9 March 2012

Kahaani directed by Sujoy Ghosh is one of the most finest,efficient thrillers I have witnessed in recent times.

The first half may be a bit stretched but still its good but it is the second half that keeps you engaged thoroughly and the climax is superb.

Story:- Vidya Bagchi(Vidya Balan) playing the helpless , who has arrived from London to Kolkata in search of her missing husband Arnab. With a sympathetic cop helping her on this mission, Vidya combs every corner of Kolkata. But all leads go cold – the guest-house he was staying at, the National Data Center where he'd been assigned, even the Indian immigration authorities have no records of Arnab Bagchi. When it seems like her husband's disappearance might be inexplicably linked to a most-wanted terrorist, Vidya pokes her nose around in dangerous places, angering the Intelligence Bureau that is trying desperately to keep some secrets hidden.

Sujoy Ghosh,who directed the disastrous Aladin in 2009, is excellent this time.

Although there are many sequences in Kahaani which work,but since mentioning them would spoil the fun.

The screenplay is taut and brave.

The dialogs are very good.

The editors could have trimmed the movie,to make it more sharper.

The cinematography by Setu is stunning.The locales of Kolkata are a treat to the eye.

The music is very good."Ami Shotti Bolchi" sung by Usha Uthup and "Ekla Cholo Re" sung by Amitabh Bachchan stand out.

Performances:- Vidya Balan rocks in Kahaani.She is an actor to watch out for.She is amazing.Parambrata Chatterjee as Rana is sweet.Nawazuddin Siddiqui as Khan,the Intelligence Bureau officer is superb.Saswata Chatterjee is good too.Special mention of the two boys,one in the Mona Lisa hotel and the other as the tea vendor are cute.Amitabh Bachchan's narration at the culmination is fine.

I am giving nine out of ten for Sujoy Ghosh's Kahaani.It is not only to be watched for fans of Vidya Balan but it is also for those who are not.Its your loss,if you miss it.

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48 out of 57 people found the following review useful:

Salute VIdya Balan. Vidya Takes Kahaani to another level

10/10
Author: vikasn6890 from India
8 March 2012

Bollywood is branded for creating movies from a male perspective. The women's stories are not really exemplified conscientiously. But, out of the blue, the women-centric flicks is fast turning out to be a bankable genre. KAHAANI is a commanding story, has an authoritative central character, has several dominant and thought-provoking moments, which makes it an all-persuasive film. Vidya Balan makes Kahaani come alive. It is several notches above the stuff we've been subjected to in the past. The movie triumphs in evoking emotions. You experience compassion, resentment,defenselessness and triumph at a variety of stages. A wonderful movie-going experience, you come out feeling a sense of pride, pleasure and fulfillment after having watched KAHAANI. There no surprise if Vidya get all the best actress awards in 2013 also. Just do not miss it. Hugely recommended!

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40 out of 42 people found the following review useful:

This is what story-telling is all about!!!

10/10
Author: abhinab-bose from India
11 March 2012

First and foremost I would like to clear out one thing about me.

I am a Bengali but in spite of the fact that I got a mesmerizing view of the Bengali culture and the city of joy-Kolkata (which I haven't visited for ages), this review is not biased.

Ever wished you watched a movie that left you completely spellbound? Yes this is one of those movies that lingers on in your head even after you leave the movie theater.

The star cast right from Vidya Balan(as Vidya Bagchi),ParambrataChattopadhyay(as police offer Satyoki Sinha/Rana),Nawazuddin Siddiqui(as second-in command Intelligence Beaureu),Saswata Chatterjee(as a hired assassin),Kharaj Mukherjee as a kind cop to the manager of Mona Lisa hotel and lastly the two kids who interact with Vidya is simply amazing.

There are several high points in the film.Vidya as the portrayal of the pregnant woman delivers a range of emotions.She is at times tough and firm on finding her missing husband.At times, she is vulnerable,frustrated because of the missing clues. She is charming in the way she talks with the kids and playful in the bus-ride with officer Rana.Then the subtlety with which Rana emotes the love he feels for Vidya and the hesitation while picking locks to find out evidences.The brash hard talk act by officer Khan and then the evil menacing act by Bob Biswaas.Brilliant!!

Moreover Sujoy Ghosh(the director) uses Vidya's pregnancy cleverly- every time she trips or even sweats too hard, you become afraid.The story totally grips you and leaves you at a dramatic high.And what can I say about the climax.Tremendous shock value!There have been very few times when I have experienced such pin-drop silence in the theater.Take a bow Sujoy..You have given Bollywood a gem of a thriller.

For those fed up with the dark and gritty underbelly of Mumbai and the bylanes of old Delhi in recent movies, there are splendid sights of Kolkata and the iconic Durga Puja.It's a treat to watch the Howrah bridge,Hoogly river and the Victoria Memorial.

Regarding music.Its great.The movie starts on a good note with "Ami Shotti Bolchi" and Amitabh Bachhan's rendition of Tagore's famous song "Jodi tor dak shune" elevates the mood to a completely different level.The director keeps the narrative clutter-free, sans any songs or side-track.

Kahaani shows that when everything falls in place for a film — story, writing, acting, editing, cinematography, etc — things can't go wrong. Kahaani is one such film; everything's right about it.

Watch Kahaani. Period

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39 out of 41 people found the following review useful:

Kahani -- A long awaited Gripping, Original Story with Awesome Direction

9/10
Author: anjaneai from India
10 March 2012

Genre --- Suspense, Drama

Review --

Kahani is indeed a worth for your money. A sincere effort to portray an incredible story, which would leave you baffled, would leave you keep guessing what is going on and what would happen next. We have seen several suspense movies that have a good build up but are utter disappointing in the end. Even after the climax, it would keep surprising you till last shot. Truly a nice movie that you can with you Family and kids without hesitation. No abusive language, no "story Ki demand" type intimate shots. A clean and gripping storyline. I liked that fact that story did not pushed a possible romantic element neither unneeded songs between characters and kept it straight and focused.

Story of Girl (Vidya) looking for her missing husband, is just the start. Movie is shot is Kolkata with characters that are real, you can relate and can smile to natural gestures. Movie keeps you clutched to your seat. Its a story of nice people stuck in their own mess up routine, offer help to the pregnant lady.

Even with new actors, jumping in with their cameo every now and then, each has done full justice to their role.The story has been wisely written binding intelligent writing along with actual Kolkata.

Verdict-- If you have been awaiting for a Good Bollywood Flick, with original narration and quality acting, the movie worth's every penny. A pleasure to watch with family or friends.

Music -- Consists of two songs, different from stream line cinema. Amitabh Bachhan has brought a new spirit to Rabindra Da's "Ekla Chalo Re". The other song -- "Ammi Shotti Bolchi" is a authentic rock song on Kolkata theme in Usha Utthup's evergreen Bengali voice.

Rating -- 8.5/10

http://bollywoodwaale.com/movies.php?movieid=14

Anjaneai

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47 out of 59 people found the following review useful:

really unexpected from Bollywood

8/10
Author: voldore from India, pune
9 March 2012

from Bollywood which generally has no place for women centered films, here comes the most amazing powerful suspense packed thriller, starring non other than the charismatic Vidya Balan, the movie is a milestone and a rare treat from Bollywood, definitely a must watch. the screenplay is so tight to find flaws, and the supporting cast has done a great job. Although the ending is not as thrilling as the whole movie, but still it is exceptional and unforeseen, its still great.

And I must say, i was disappointed by Bollywood..(this time they have done it original, no copycat/remake/based upon/Hollywood's copy).. pure original mind blowing suspense.

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40 out of 46 people found the following review useful:

\m/ must watch \m/

9/10
Author: tejasmdeshpande from India
8 March 2012

Do not listen to what people tell you based on the rumors, go and watch it!! The story is just fantastic!! A lot of thought has been put into every minute detail of the movie!! All of it to culminate in an awesome finish. Vidya Balan has as always done her bit perfectly and is supported well by her co-star Parambrata Chatterjee.The cinematography in the initial stages is fair. The direction is legendary. Every single scene has a part to play in the climax. Go watch it \m/. You'll be glued to your seats for sure!! And don't bother to think of what's gonna happen next, cos just like any awesome thriller, you're gonna be proved wrong ;P

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35 out of 40 people found the following review useful:

Kahaani Is An Enthralling Watch :D

8/10
Author: Sidharth Banerjee from India
9 March 2012

Who would expect that someone who directed 'Home Delivery' could create magic. Sujoy Ghosh's 'Kahaani' is a mouth watering treat for any movie lover. Right from the very beginning till the end the tight narrative keeps the viewer on his toes without any hiccups whatsoever. Starring Vidya Balan as Vidya Bagchi(Bidya Bagchi) as a wife who is in search of his husband Arnab Bagchi and in its course arrives in Kolkata all the way from London even though she is pregnant. The story follows her search at the same time playing with your mind with many twists and turns. After a long time have I seen a film in which every actor has given a peach of a performance and thus requires a special mention. From Parambrata Chatterjee who plays the role of inspector Rana who helps Vidya find her husband to Office Khan played by Nawazuddin Siddiqui to even Saaswata Chatterjeeas who plays the serial killer Bob every one is brilliant. I am really looking forward to more actors from the Bangla film industry to shine in Bollywood. The script is tight with loop holes you don't even bother worrying about and to add to that the haunting background score that gives you the true feeling of a thriller. Though it awkwardly seems a bit longer than its 2 hour running time I still won't mind watching it again. And yes Vidya Balan our very own Meryl Streep is almost certain to get another filmfare and national award. Of course the year has just started but i might just be disappointed if she doesn't get it. Ha! really satisfied with Kahaani.

7.5/10 for Kahaani and another 0.5 for the collective acting performances of the cast. Audience which included a lot of family and friends - 3.5/5

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