STORY: Akira Sharma (Sonakshi Sinha) is your average Jane from Jodhpur. Early in life she sees an atrocity committed on a neighbour and learns to defend herself. And, a spitfire is born.
REVIEW: Our screen ki Akira is Khan, Kumar and Kapoor rolled into one. She punches and defends better than most khiladis. Her progressive, school-teacher father, Atul Kulkarni had her enrolled in karate classes instead of dance classes that girls her age frequented. But Akira learns that a Durga avatar cannot help you fight a regressive society and corrupt administration. So instead of being given a medal of honour for trying to save someone early in life, she is sent to a remand home. Not only does she lose three precious years of her life; she also loses her doting father.
The scene moves to Mumbai where Akira and her mother come to live with her hen-pecked brother. But when she realises her sister-in-law is unwelcoming, Akira chooses her college hostel. Here our braveheart finds herself being targeted by the college bullies. She manages to shake the students off but lands herself in the dragnet headed by a corrupt cop ACP Govind Rane (Anurag Kashyap) of the Mumbai Police. Poor thing lands herself in so many unenviable situations that she spends little time in college and more in an asylum.
Murugadoss (Ghajini, Holiday — A Soldier Is Never Off Duty), you can see, started with honourable intentions of trying to impart self-defence lessons to girls. But besides that one noble thought, he couldn’t manage a cohesive plot. His cops-and-Akira chase runs out of steam much too early in the film. Post interval, things get so convoluted, you want to kick and punch. Also, the entire onus of cracking the case is given to a heavily-pregnant, Rabia Sultan (Konkona Sen Sharma) modelled on Frances McDormand of the Hollywood thriller Fargo (1996). And despite Konkona’s sincerity, she still seems like a caricature because the writing material doesn’t support her. Anurag as the baddie and Sonakshi’s spirited act redeem the film to some degree. For the rest, Akira is humdrum.