We are living in an era when Bollywood is leaving its fan disappointed with lousy scripts and unnecessary remakes. No one can deny that many of us miss the old times when Bollywood gave us some attention-grabbing movies. And, one such gripping movie was Manoj Bajpayee and Urmila Matondkar starrer Satya.
It was the year 1999, when the movie director, Ram Gopal Varma was riding high on the success of Satya. Featuring Manoj Bajpayee, Shefali Shah, J.D. Chakravorty, and Urmila Matondkar, the hard-hitting movie won many hearts. The movie not only re-defined the gangster genre but also showcased great talented actors onscreen.
Unlike today’s directors, Varma refuses to cash in on the success of Satya with one another gangster movie. Rather, he took the risk and decided to make an experimental unconventional thriller – Kaun?
Directed by Ram Gopal Verma and written by Anurag Kashyap, Kaun? was an unconventional movie in a lot of different ways. Bollywood hasn’t created a thriller like that before.
Firstly, unlike larger-than-life Bollywood movies that are shot in multiple countries, this movie was shot in just one location i.e. inside a house.
The movie had no songs, which was quite a brave decision in the 90s. This Ittefaq-style songless suspense thriller was a huge risk that the makers took.
While the film takes time to build up, it doesn’t disappoint you as it delivers the required punch. Because of the talented actors, you just couldn’t stop yourself from watching it. The movie had actors, not superstars. Unlike today, the makers brought talented actors together, who weren’t big names back then. And, fortunately, none of them disappointed the audience.
While today these things may be common, 23 years ago, that was a recipe for a box-office disaster.
You couldn’t deny that Urmila Matondkar’s great acting skills added so much substance to the movie. Famous for doing commercial movies like Judaai and Rangeela, Urmila showed a lot of guts to do this difficult role and she doesn’t disappoint!
Kaun? Is the perfect example of how makers could create an impactful movie on a low budget. Rather than investing in so-called superstars, the makers should invest in good actors. How Ram Gopal Verma invested in actors like Manoj Bajpayee, Urmila Matondkar and Sushant Singh shows good movies need actors, not superstars. The makers may be low on budget, but they were definitely high on performances.
The refreshing storyline by Anurag Kashyap needs a special mention. How he courageously deviated from formula film-making shows what we are missing in Bollywood these days.
From innovative direction techniques to hard-hitting performances to an unconventional storyline, this movie has so many great things. We hope today’s Bollywood makers would stop churning out remakes and seek inspiration from this authentic psychological suspense thriller.
Even more than two decades after its release, the movie is quite popular among movie fans, who follow the thriller-horror genre. It isn’t surprising that the movie enjoys a cult status. In case you haven’t watched it, check out this movie ASAP. And, we promise, you won’t be disappointed.