This film, from India, should appeal to a universal audience. It is terrific. Based upon a 1999 murder in New Delhi and the campaign for justice, taking years to reach fruition, focuses on the crusaders who championed, against supreme odds, the cause, rights, of the victim; a vivacious, determined, fearless enchantress who looses her life because she refused to serve a drink to an “entitled” , inebriated customer.
Rani Mukherjee, the Bollywood icon, plays Meera, a free- spirited, foul -mouthed television journalist; she does not dance, she does not sing, she just acts, stupendously. She has doffed the ingénue image, replacing it with serious, sound acting. Those familiar with her career will savor the tremendous transformation.
Vidya Balan, her beauty disguised, is Sabrina, the sister whose quest for accountability in the death of Jessica is perpetually shunned; she is emotionally battered and disillusioned by the tarnished and corrupt bureaucracy; her life is stalemated, stunted by the denials, vagueness, larceny of witnesses, friends. Balan’s interpretation of the role is pivotal to the success of the film and she succeeds in portraying Sabrina with immeasurable fortitude especially as she is torpedoed with one shattering indignity after another.
This engrossing, finely tuned film written and directed by Raj Kumar Gupta triumphs in erasing the boundaries between east and west movie attendees; decadent, fraudulent public officials are ubiquitous in all societies; as are those whose standards cannot be compromised, only crystallized and elevated when confronted with inequity and amoral behavior.
Edmond Burke wisely stated, “all that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing’. In “No One Killed Jessica” good women prevail!