November 21, 2017, 9:46 am

Movie review: AKIRA-

by Hiba Usmani.

A story of a girl who wants to change the world, the only thing that watching Akira will do is make you want to change the channel, and if you watch it in a theater, too bad! 
Defying all sense of logic and reality, Akira relies on a killer female lead to overshadow the weak plot and flat characters. Movie directors should learn a lesson via Akira, that a woman-centric subject does not make your movie moving or poignant, it just means you are following the latest trend, if anything.

Akira Sharma (Sonakshi Sinha) was raised by an open-minded father who enrolled her in self-defence classes at a time when all her friends were going to dance classes. Akira is a strong-headed girl who believes in defending the weak, which is shown when she tries to help an acid attack victim by identifying the culprit. Following a street brawl, Akira gets sent to a remand home for girls. Fast-forwarding to the present, she is now enrolled in college where she crosses paths with a bunch of corrupt policemen.

A remake of the Tamil film ‘Mounaguru’, which revolves around a male lead, Akira relies on shifting the storyline to a woman-centric one as their one and only hook. Rather than treating the female character as a human with a separate set of circumstances, director A.R. Murugadoss instead keeps the same character as the original film with the only difference being the extra X chromosome in the main character.

He fails to realise that the same actions performed by a man have completely different consequences to those performed by a woman. The movie may have a female as the lead actor, but they are men who will most likely connect with her.

The characters are also poorly fleshed out. Akira’s singular contribution to the movie is showing that a woman can fight as well as a man: her backstory, her motives, and her own feelings and desires are left to the audience’s imagination. Despite Sinha’s best efforts, the actress was unable to bring such a poorly written character to life on the screen.

Frankly, the best written character is ACP Rane (Anurag Kashyap), the corrupt coke-snorting cop whose drug-addled brain is never so clouded as to make him lose sight of his self-interest. The chemistry between him and the other 3 cops never falters and their scenes never fail to keep one interested. Konkona Sen Sharma also shines bright in whatever margin she received to perform.

The movie starts off promising as Murugadoss attempts to impart knowledge on the importance of girls learning how to defend themselves.

However, the message of the movie is diluted in the humdrum action scenes, the pasty characters, and the infuriating suggestion that the best sacrifice a woman can make is letting an abuser go free. Take a rain check on this film: I wish I had.

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