The first thing you will notice about Kahaani 2 is the restlessness. There’s not one still moment in the film and the template is so dark and gloomy that you know there’s something creepy and sinister lurking around Kalimpong (West Bengal). Vidya Sinha (Vidya Balan) stays with her teenage daughter Mini (Tunisha Sharma) and Sub-inspector Inderjeet Singh (Arjun Rampal) lives a comfortable life in another small town, Chandan Nagar, with his pretty wife Rashmi (Manini Chadha) and their daughter. Soon enough we know that despite their different paths, Vidya (who he knows as Durga Rani Singh) and Inderjeet have a history which is instrumental in the events to unfold.
Their lives collide when Vidya meets with an accident and her daughter goes missing without any clue. Inderjeet gets hold of Durga’s diary, in which she writes about her and Mini’s relationship and the horrifying ordeals the two have gone through. Durga is drawn to the quiet Mini (played by Naisha Khanna in the flashback), Mini is unable to sleep at night. Her uncle (Jugal Hansraj) and her grandmother (Amba Sanyal) are hiding a dark secret which Vidya uncovers. Without going into spoiler territory, I just want to praise Sujoy Ghosh for handling a subject matter as sensitive as this one so well. There are scenes where you will just stare at the screen, awestruck, because of the gravity of the situation. After unearthing the troubling secret, it’s up to Durga to find her kidnapped daughter and avoid getting arrested, both difficult tasks as Durga’s accident is a pretty bad one.
The first half of the movie doesn’t give you a moment to look anywhere else but the screen. It’s spooky, creepy and uncomfortable. You might want to smash a person’s face in a scene or two. It’s the second half which turns the movie from a creepy mystery to somewhat of an action thriller with the police relentlessly chasing Durga. There’s a nice little hat tip to the original Kahaani, but the plot twist at the end of this one is nowhere close to the predecessor. Still, this film is unnerving and creepy, and that really did it for me.
In performances, Vidya Balan, got her groove back and completely killed it as Durga Rani Singh. There’s not a single flaw in her performance and you cannot take your eyes off the actress whenever she’s in the frame. Arjun Rampal has done a good job as Inderjeet Singh as it’s a role which suits his understated personality rather well. On top of that, he’s quite a sight for sore eyes and that’s always nice. Jugal Hansraj has been cast in a very surprising role and that’s where the genius of casting director Mukesh Chhabra lies. The baby-faced actor gives off very unsettling vibes, which makes the proceedings of the film very interesting to watch. Mini, primarily played by Naisha is the right amount of adorable and disturbing. Namrata Rao‘s editing is flawless and Tapan Basu‘s cinematography gives Kahaani 2 the perfect feel of a thriller which will make you restless and uncomfortable. Sujoy Ghosh has undoubtedly made one of the best movies this year. I wish the audience, which made an underrated gem like Kahaani such a huge success, responds to the sequel with the same enthusiasm.