Complexion? “Wheatish.” Would you or any of your friends use wheatish to describe a person – no – which is one of the reasons to watch an International film, so you experience things that are not wholly American. Kahaani was filmed in Kolkata, India, mainly on the streets of Kolkata during the colorful festival of Durga Puja. A very pregnant Vidya Bagchi (Vidya Balan) flies in from London to search for her husband who has disappeared during a business trip.
The Police become more interested in her plight when they realize her husband resembles a “most wanted” killer being hunted by a couple of agencies in India. A mystery thriller with several assassination murders, intrigue and double-crossing, with the Police and Indian Intelligence (IB) scheming behind everyone’s back. The plot is confusing, but then add the English headlines on the TV news along with the subtitles, and characters speaking part of a sentence in English and part in Hindi, and it’s a challenge, but a challenge worth accepting. This movie calls for some fast reading and looking (or pausing), especially toward the end.
This 2-hour movie is basically a one woman show which is quite different from the majority of Bollywood movies. There are several weak scenes, maybe they are expected scenes in India, but they take away from the building up tension. The worst? When one male character begins fantasizing about the female lead, a music video interlude breaks out with pensive and sexy looks to make sure you all understand what’s happening, although it ends with a bit of humor when the guy’s Mother calls, “You’re late for dinner” and kills his daydream.
The high point, in addition to Vidya, were the street scenes showing the real Kolkata, not hiding any of the problems. A very pregnant despondent woman roaming the streets of Kolkata seemed odd, very odd to the Police, but she was an intelligent computer engineer, and was always kind to the people, especially the children, which always helps in the long run. The movie ends with a satisfying final scene. Pregnant Vidya had one crying scene, not the best cryer, maybe only a three on the crying scale.