But of course. The pragmatism underscoring the Hippocratic Oath bypasses the young idealistic Rohan(Arjun Mathur), the intern who dares to speak out of turn to question Dr. Asthana's supreme authority in the hospital.
Taking the conflict between the blase megalomaniacal
medicine-man and the idealistic intern as the central point in the
plot, Vikram Bhatt has written a script that is partly a
conscience-pricking morality tale, and partly a racy thriller set
in the spick-and-span corridors of a high-end hospital where, for
the record, an eminent surgeon has just goofed up. But shhhh! No
one in his intimidated medical team is allowed to speak of his
horrid faux pas.
The "Ankur Arora Murder Case" is
one of the most gripping moral dramas in recent times. The deftly
crafted script raises the question of right and wrong in the
medical profession without getting peachy or hysterical. Somewhere,
Dr. Asthana's medical arrogance connects with each one of us who
has in one way or another encountered deadends in
Looking at Kay Kay Menon's brilliantly underscored emphatically
italicised performance, I finally understood what was meant by the
Biblical proverb, "Physician, heal thyself".
Many portions of the pacy plot would seem excessively racy. The
post-interval helping seems specially eager to seek out unexpected
twists and turns. And that's fine. The idea of making a film on
medical ethics is to ensure that audiences' participation in the
proceedings never flags. To that extent, director Suhail Tatari
(who earlier directed the gripping thriller 'My Wife's Murder'),
keeps the large array of conflicted characters in a constant state
of self-questioning anxiety. It's cinematically a terrific space to
be in. Tatari explores that space with intelligence, sensitivity
and some charm.
While not allowing us to forget that we are watching a medical
thriller, Tatari also gives deepened shape to various
inter-relationships in the plot. The characters are convincing and
yet distant from what we generally perceive to be authentic cinema.
The narration moves on two different levels: the headline-inspired
pseudo-documentary and the sprawling soap opera that life often
throwns open in situations that we see as too unreal to be
The performances in both the first-half (the medical drama) and
the second-half (the courtroom conflict) are all supremely poised.
The actors assume brilliancy without getting compromised by the
need to shine. Tisca Arora's bereaved mother's act is so real and
restrained! She gives us goosebumps when after her son's death, she
gets busy on her smartphone to fob off the terrible reality of the
tragedy. Really, Tisca is one of our most underrated
Kay Kay Menon rediscovers the awe-inspiring actor within himself
with a performance that leaves us repelled and fascinated. Arjun
Mathur as the daring intern who takes on the mighty medicine man
exudes integrity without brimming over with righteous indignation.
In an era when all our filmy heroes are growing stubbles and trying
to look mean, Arjun plays a true-blue old-fashioned hero (the kind
who used to fight for the truth) in a very contemporary context and
Dam, who had played a sexually intense role in "Hate Story",
undergoes a personality volte face. As a lawyer battling on behalf
of the powerful medical mafia, she pitches a poignant but strong
performance. Some of the film's most powerful moments feature Paoli
with her courtroom opponent (Manish Chaudhury, brilliant) in bed
and on the brink. The way Paoli and Tisca connect as two grieving
mothers, is a masterstroke of scripting.
Indeed, this is is a far cleverer, wiser and relevant film than
most of what we get to see these days. At a time when Bollywood is
raining bubbles and effervescence about 'jawaani deewanis' and
'yamla paglas', this sobering clenched disturbing medical thriller
comes as an invigorating cloudburst. The film makes out a scathing
and rousing case against medical malpractices. Bursting at the
seams with acting talent, director Suhail Tatari's restorative
drama hits us where it hurts the most. The conscience.
Director: Suhail Tatari
Cast: Kay Kay Menon, Arjun Mathur, Vishakha Singh, Paoli Dam, Tisca Chopra and Manish Chaudhary; Writer: Vikram Bhatt