Praful Patel (Kangana Ranaut) works as a housekeeper at a five-star hotel in the US. A divorcee, she lives with her orthodox Gujarati parents, saving up for her own apartment. But a gambling spree at Las Vegas puts Praful in a tight corner.
In a desperate run to win back her lost money, freedom, and ward off remarriage, Praful gambles again and gets into trouble with mobsters. With an adamant father and no help at sight, Praful takes extreme measures to pay off her threatening creditors.
The Missing Ingredient
You taste it like the missing salt in your food in Simran. An intangible feeling of loss. Few films have a better second half. Simran has that rare pedigree, yet doesn't burst out of the screen in wicked glee.
Film writer Apurva Asrani's premise is hilarious, wicked and rich with possibilities. But Hansal Mehta's strength is clearly gritty, realistic, stark drama rather than a comedy drama. So the uproarious laughter moments just don't happen.
Comic Genre, Wrong Approach
The missing ingredient then is the directorial approach. A director more versed in black comedy could have made an insane roller coaster out of this. Probably Anurag Kashyap would have worked wonders here?
Told in a snappily edited, non-fussy style, Simran does end up as an engaging life-mirroring drama. It is not always convincing though. The lack of humor and of any major set piece or lingering moment is an issue. It makes the film feel disconnected at times.
Kangana Ranaut Rocks!
Kangana Ranaut is the life and soul of the movie. She keeps us invested all through, taking us along through her joy, sadness, despair, and frustrations. A fine actress and an icon in the making, she rises above the film's weak spots with talent-rich ease.
The revelation of the film title's origin is one of Simran's few high points. Though the flaws stick out all over the place, and it doesn't pack a punch, Simran is different enough to appeal to an off-the-block audience.
Thanks to the editing, performances and great premise, you should glide over its flaws, relent and enjoy it. Without giving much away, Simran is a little steal of a movie! Ranaut is one big reason to not miss it on the big screen, movie lovers! A potential movie of the year, but not to be, not to be.