Haseen Dillruba (2021)
A mystery that has all the ingredients of a thriller aka love triangle, love ,lust, infidelity, remorse, revenge and a death!
Director – Vinil Mathew
Writer – Kanika Dhillon
Cast – Taapsee Pannu,Vikrant Massey, Harshvardhan Rane, Yamini Das, Dayashankar Pandey
The story opens to a blast, a death and an investigation of a purported murder. In the flashback we see the story our protagonists.
Rani (Taapsee) is sassy, non-conformist and a romantic at heart who gets married to a quiet and shy Rishu (Vikrant). The sharp city girl and the simple small town boy are at a totally uneven plane with respect to their expectations from the their partners and obviously therefore, their married life has quite an interesting graph.
To avoid spoiler, would refrain to tell how the third angle to the triangle joins the fray.
Kanika Dhillon and Vinil Mathew spin this dark thriller almost on the lines of pulp fiction just like our Rani was addicted to. It’s bold, entertaining, thrilling and the characters are definitely not holier than thou.
The story wastes no time in taking off and the backstory has you in a tight grip, hanging on every word of Rani just like all those policemen in the station. Their meet cute story and the foray into marital life has you chuckling through out and even laughing aloud at times. The fantastic dialogues and Yamini Das as Rishu’s mother adds a hilarious zing.
Gradually the story changes shades. The characters start showing a play and the situations leave you in doldrums, at times siding, at times sympathising and completely invested. I would say the fantastic first half with that graph of the story, the interesting characters, the art detailing of sets, looks and costumes, the setting, the direction, everything leaves you wowed.
The second half takes a thriller tone. Personally, I found it a tad less engaging as compared to the first half. But what it boasts off is a wonderful arch to characters and consequently, the performances going more nuanced. The film culminates in a climax that was the only flaw in the film as per my opinion and took away some shine. I feel it could have been a better, tighter and more plausible.
I loved the writing, the boldness, the unapologetic characters, none of them being entirely white, the brashness and no attempt being made to subdue it. An on-your-face take on lust, attraction, infidelity marriage, and nitty gritty of bedroom is something thats definitely bold.
The cast has a big role in making this film a delightful watch.
Vikrant Massey, in his best performance till date, absolutely shines. His character had the widest arch and man… he does surprise with his portrayal. He makes you adore him, sympathise with him, at times despise him and even dread him.
Taapsee is at the heart of it all. When it comes to sass and brashness, she plays it like second skin.
Harshvardhan Rane, with that hunky beefed up look is the perfect third angle. He leaves you wanting to see more of him.
A special mention for Yamini Das. Right from Sui Dhaga when I saw her for the first time, to her small role in Ram Prasad ki Tehrvi, I have always loved her portrayals that are so relatable and real. This time, she wowed me completely with her brilliant performance and comic timing.
After a long while, Bollywood delivers an all rounded entertaining package backed up with mystery, thrills and performances. Taking a couple of flaws in stride, I thoroughly enjoyed the film and would definitely recommend.