If anything, Family Business (Star One) came as close to good crime TV/Film as one can expect in India.
Gurgaon is a family crime drama that’s splendid, unnerving, tenacious and discomforting at times.
The film leads on the charismatic Pankaj Tripathi, who here deserves all the praises possible. From the guy mugging the ever famous Vijay Raaz in Run to Masaan to a school principal in Nil Battey Sanatta, Tripathi’s shades and variances have been phenomenal and have come a long way. What he has done in Gurgaon is an act par excellence. Be it the strict Haryanvi dialect or redefining those scenes with staunch silences, Tripathi almost reminisces Brando from Godfather. His innuendos are a glimpse of absolute power which he looks completely drenched in, making it surprisingly believable. When you see him on screen, you believe his is a clout with nothing but sheer impact. The shades of his role of Kehri Singh vary from being a family man to a criminal having a dark past. Tripathi carries almost the entire film on his shoulders until his son is in the frame.
To which we move to the next character. The show stealer in this film will definitely have to be Akshay Oberoi, the son. The finesse with his performance is almost unmatched and there are times when you hope he doesn’t cross his limits as the antagonist. His is a no holds barred performance where every damn crime under the sun is committable. As the anti-hero, Oberoi catches your attention, something he never lets go.
This film is also a finding for Aamir Bashir (cop from A Wednesday). The maturity of his is in perfect synergy with Tripathi’s ruthlessness, thus bringing a balance and synergy between the two. Bashir looks like the pivot that holds the situation and makes us believe that he will hold it accountable. He doesn’t have many dialogues but an inner conflict to deal with. A feud with his closed ones is not enough for Bashir to stop himself from lending a helping hand.
Ragini Khanna as Preet is the epicentre of what looks like a brewing chaos. Without revealing much, one can just say that Ragini has been rediscovered with elan. Her leap from television to the big screen is commendable.
The punch of this film is Shalini Vatsa. I have never seen a more simplistic portrayal of a housewife to a powerful husband and the climatic excellence she brings to fore is simply calming. Let’s just say, you all will be glad having watched Vastav before this!
Gurgaon will be dropped from cinema halls in no time. It doesn’t have the calibre of Khans’ promotions, nor does it have stellar sellers in terms of cast or the director. What Shanker Raman offers through Gurgaon is a disturbing portrayal of ‘family business’ leaving you stunned. The background score needs a special mention because of its sheer tenacity.
And of course, here, we don’t have any guarantee of what might take place in front of us.