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film called Mouna Guru , which emerged a sleeper hit on release in 2011.

While Mouna Guru was the story of a young man who lands in situations that force him resort to violence, the script ( Santha Kumar) of Akira changes the central protagonist to a woman, naturally for the benefit of Sonakshi.

A few other minor tweaks have been necessary from the original Mouna Guru story ( which incidentally was also written by Santha Kumar), though the film maintains the overall loud, one- dimensional masala tenor one associates with maintream drama anywhere in India.

For that reason, Sonakshi's Akira is imagined dutifully with cliches one associates with male protagonists in commercial Hindia cinema. She is taught martial arts by her father ( Atul Kulkarni) at a young age, for self- defence. While defending herself from a few bad guys, she lands in juvenile prison. On release Akira and her mother are forced to shift base to Mumbai. Instead of staying at her brother's place, Akira opts for a girl's hostel.

Twist in the tale comes with Anurag Kashyap's ganja- puffing top cop who along with his cronies commit a crime. An honest officer ( Konkona Sen Sharma) starts a probe, and Akira gets involved.

Murugadoss' casting of Kashyap as the sinister cop renders the film its quirk factor. Kashyap adds an edge to the overall drama despite his highly filmi role.

A credible cast of character artists suffers from flat writing, including Konkona. Murugadoss clearly had his mind on little else but creating a one- stop package for Sonakshi's return as a saleable star. Whether it happens or not, this role should keep the actress in focus for a while.

by Vinayak Chakravorty Akira Cast: Sonakshi Sinha, Konkona Sen Sharma, Anurag Kashyap, Teena Singh, Amit Sadh, Atul Kulkarni Direction: AR Murugadoss Ei Ei Ei T INA, Meena ya Reena -- naam mein kya rakha hai ? Lots obviously, when the deal is to relaunch one of Bollywood's laadli beti s, who has lately been struggling to have a career. It's a role that flaunts explosive action meant to furnish a spiffy image makeover, and a story imported from -- where else -- South Indian cinema.

So, Sonakshi Sinha is repackaged as Akira. That's a stylish name for a heroineoriented action flick. Pasted on the posters alongwith Sona's furious face ( she's playing the very angry gal this time), the name of Ghajini maker AR Murugadoss as director is a neat hardsell mantra, too. If Sonakshi wanted a departure from her bynow- exhausted desi beauty role play, this film serves that cause at least. Akira is what her image managers were looking for, to give her out- of- shape career graph a hearty shove.

Any resemblance to anything that Japanese maestro Akira Kurosawa ever made ( God forbid!) was always absolutely out of the question. Rather, although the film reveals stray generic likeness in its action scenes with cinema of the Far East, it actually borrows from closer home. Akira draws thematic inspiration from a Tamil MADAM MAYHEM MUSIC ACTING DIRECTION SCRIPT IMPACT out take Murugadoss clearly had his mind on little else but creating a one- stop package for Sonakshi's return as a saleable star.

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Publication:Mail Today (New Delhi, India)
Date:Sep 3, 2016
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