Mom - Movie Review

Monday, July 10, 2017 - 15:00
Mom (2017)
Cast & Crew: 

Movie: Mom

'MOM' movie hit the screens in Hindi, Telugu and Tamil on July 7th.  Let's find to know whether it's worth watching or can be given a miss…

What's the Story?

Devika Sabharwal (Sridevi) is a biology teacher in the same college where her daughter (Sajal Ali as Arya) studies.  Being a stepmother, Devika is constantly rejected by Arya, much to the mom's agony.  Her husband Anand (Adnan Siddiqui) is her strength.  

Once this conflict in the family is introduced, the film presents a gory situation.  The young Arya gets inhumanely raped by a group of lechers, one of them is her classmate.  

If Devika is traumatized by her step-daughter's state, tending to her carefully in the hospital, the culprits escape the long arm of the law.  

This is when Devika grows spine and decides to go after Arya's savage rapists, one at a time.  In this secret mission, she takes the assistance of Daya Shankar Kapoor (Nawazuddin Siddiqui), a licensed detective who goes to any extent to help the mom, a representative of the divine as he sees her!  The only obstacle here is a sincere cop named Matthew Francis (Akshay Khanna).  

What Works!

Debutante director Ravi Udyawar is not equipped with a terrific thriller.  But he has got strong characterizations, especially of Sridevi and Nawazuddin, to show.  

The way Sridevi feels pained by Arya's attitude towards her, the way she cares for her teenage daughter unconditionally, the way she cries helplessly when Arya is raped, are narrated well.  When Arya is snatched by a rapist, she is not in the vehicle the next second.  She resists and puts up a losing fight till she falls unconscious.  All through, you can't help but feel shocked.  

It's elements like these which separate a routine revenge story from a nuanced revenge drama.  

The scenes involving Sridevi and the funny yet sharp detective stand out.  The humour is mild and oddball.  The art gallery scene has both comedy and serious talk (Sridevi's view that Mahabharatham was the originator of revenge).   Had the film had a couple of more scenes like these, it would have been less boring.  

AR Rahman's musical score evokes a range of emotions.  If the sound of RR is adroit, one feels his songs are going far away from the grasp of the mass audience.  Anay Goswami's cinematography is the 'mom' of many camera works!  

What Doesn't Work!

One big underwhelming factor of 'MOM' is its predictability.  The story is a cross between Raveen Tandon's 'Maatr' and the Telugu movie 'Sarpayagam'.  The culprits are killed without mercy, using clever tricks, it smells of Vikram's 'I'.

Till the climax, Akshay Khanna's character (he is seen as a cop) creates no much interest.  It seems he is there to make the climax more thrilling, without whom it would have been a simple battle.

The way writers Ravi, Girish Kohli and our own Kona Venkat have written the film is good, but execution is what seems to suffer it.  How come a school teacher grows the spine to commit chilling murders without even showing her vulnerability while doing all of this?  Of course, she tries to fall back on her hubby's support when Akshay Khanna warns her, but is that enough? 

Performance Score

It's Sridevi's movie largely, with Nawazuddin offering excellent support.  The legendary actress has not lost the power of showing agony and joy, fear and cunning through her eyes.  The best choice to play the titular role.  

The detective is unsophisticated and a family man.  That makes his character very relatable and Nawazuddin just excels in the role.  

Akshay is routine, while Adnan is OK.  Sajal shows attitude in the right way.  Abhimanyu Singh of 'Gabbar Singh' is the most vital of the villains.  He passes muster.  

Final Verdict

Pluses: Good performances, strong emotional appeal, and deft music and cinematography.  
Minuses: Formulaic story, slow pace.

Reviewed by: