Home »  Magazine »  Arts & Entertainment »  Queen


Simplistic? Undemanding? Perhaps. But, ultimately, immensely warm and winsome, pressing just the right emotional buttons


Starring: Kangana Ranaut, Rajkumar Rao, Lisa Haydon
Directed by Vikas Bahl

Quite often I tweet snatches of the conversations I hear in the women’s compartment on my Delhi Metro commute, on the blue line, which, incidenta­lly, passes through ‘Rjori’ aka ‘Rajauri Garden’, where our heroine Rani (Kangana, in perfect fit with her character) comes from. I heard that familiar chit-chat of the metro in the dialogues of Queen. Throwaway phrases, patois like “Aapne weight put on kiya hai”, “Kyon ro rahe (not rahi, mind you) ho didi”, “Mummyji, daddyji ki kasam”. It’s such casual detailing and seemingly unplanned quotidian touches, like the hilarious “heeng ko English mein kya kehte hain” scene that make Queen more than your usual Delhi-Punjabi shaadi film.

The everyday element extends beyond Rjori to Rani’s travels abroad, her “honeymoon with self” after getting betrayed by her possessive, chauvinist fiancee (Rajkumar, spot on). It captures the minutiae of the foreign jaunt as a few of us backpackers have experienced, a map in hand. It’s about living in youth hostels, where sharing the loo with strange men is a given. It could be about witnessing the first “lip-to-lip” or, as in my case, being offered a 50 per cent student discount for a peep show in Amsterdam’s infamous De Wallen. For many of us middle-class people, who lucked out post liberalisation, travel abroad meant that: a much-­needed disruption in our conventional world. Like Rani, it also helped us gain confidence that we can get by, alone, where­ver we may be.

Independence is not merely about big battles. For Rani, it is about managing to carry the heavy suitcase up the stairs to her room. Similarly, I have never felt more liberated than when I managed to change the gas cylinder or drove a lizard out of the house. Rani then is a fresh new addition to our filmi women. Someone many us might strongly identify with. Our ‘women’s’ films have traditionally been about tragic, sacrificial, scarred women. It’s about making overt gender statements. Not that all of that is not significant. But there’s also the sheer joy of being a woman, about seizing a moment, life and etern­ity by just being yourself. Queen celebrates that. So Rani may have a glamorous friend like Vijaylakshmi (hot Haydon). That friend we’ve also had. The one who always stole the spotlight. But we never became as glam as her, just more comfortable in our own ordinary skins. Rani doesn’t change drastically either. Hers is a believable, yet steady assertion of self. Like it has been for many of us.

Queen is a squarely mainstream film. Simplistic? Undemanding? Perhaps. But ultimately it is immensely warm and winsome, pressing just the right emotional buttons. A week after having seen it, I still have a silly smile plastered on my face. I want to stand atop a table and dance in mad abandon to “Hungama ho gaya” and send an e-mail full of hearts and smileys to Rani at happyrani@yahoo.com.

Post a Comment

You are not logged in, To comment please / Register
or use
Next Story : V. Balakrishnan
Download the Outlook ​Magazines App. Six magazines, wherever you go! Play Store and App Store
Here in Mumbai, when Faezeh Jalali presents Shikhandi: The story of In-Betweens, the story becomes a brisk, pinching satire about punishing times, then and now.
MAGAZINE April 19, 2018
Movie Review
This biopic of V.P. Sathyan, Kerala’s and India’s football team captain in the ’90s, injects a dose of adrenaline into the veins of a resurgent Kerala
MAGAZINE February 22, 2018
The musical moves from one milestone to the other interspersed with songs and commentary by Boman Irani as the voice of the British Raj.
MAGAZINE April 07, 2017
The story touches upon glamour and the cost it extracts. It's about crime, the afterlife and love...
MAGAZINE March 02, 2017
Watching it as just a movie divorced from the reality around us, Raees offers as many moments of entertainment as tedium in the second half...
MAGAZINE January 25, 2017



A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

or just type initial letters