CAST: Priyanka Chopra, Prakash Jha, Manav Kaul, Ninad Kamat, Rahul Bhat
DIRECTION: Prakash Jha
DURATION: 2 hours 38 minutes
Straight away, Jai Gangaajal celebrates Priyanka Chopra in one of her most- literally – kick-ass performances. Bankipur is bullied by MLA Bablu (Manav) and brother Dabloo (Ninad), who rape, murder and loot farmers’ lands. Police’s ‘circle babu’ BN Singh (Prakash) smoothly facilitates Bablu-Dablu while building himself a marbled palace of black money. Suddenly, Abha Mathur (Priyanka) arrives as Bankipur’s new SP – will Bablu-Dablu’s party end? Jai Gangaajal is one of Prakash Jha’s best stories. It weaves together crucial contemporary threads – land mafias, corrupt netas, broker-cops, broken farmers – with Jha’s enduring concern about vigilante justice. In his 2003 Gangaajal, SP Amit Kumar was bewildered by frustrated cops blinding criminals – to make society ‘pavitar’ – with acid. Here, Abha Mathur faces mobs hanging goons, shouting, “Jo janta ko lootega, uska suicide!” There are memorable dialogues – ‘Aapko galat misguide kiya jar raha hai’ – and sharp editing. But the film gets stretched. A sarpanch and goonda less would’ve kept it tighter. Yet, Jai Gangaajal packs a punch with its panorama (a Badaun-like landscape where girls are hung from trees), dilemma and performances – particularly the one by ‘Madam Sir’, who wields a lathi you will love.