MOVIE REVIEW : The Film Emotional Atyachar
Director : Akshay Shere
Cast : Ranvir Shorey, Vinay Pathak, Mohit Ahlawat, Anand Tiwari, Kalki Koechlin
A bagful of money, several characters, all at the mercy of unforeseen circumstances and you’ve got a pass-the-parcel game - except no one wants to play. The bag shifts hands - one happens to find it, another steals it, the other sneaks it away and so on. A very tired plot, as you’ll agree.
The treatment is worn-out too, feverishly attempting a Tarantino. So you have a scene inspired from Pulp Fiction, where the hardened criminals blow off someone’s brains by accident. Here it’s their accomplice who is shot when stealing that bag, and the remaining duo then attempts to remove the bullet, doing a shoddy job.
So we’re left to see this character actor’s close-ups writhing in pain as they accidentally cut off one of his nerves; and as one character puts it, “everything except the bullet came out.”
We witness this character’s agonisingly slow death, picturised with self-indulgent delight, and wonder that it must be tempting to go overboard when making a `noir’. Plus the introductory tags (Bosco – ‘Virgin Casanova’, Junior Bhai – ‘Wannabe Gangster’) given to each character on introduction is old-hat.
We see Joe (Vinay Pathak) and Leslie (Ranvir Shorey), two encounter specialist cops, so corrupt they make the bad guys look good. They threaten a local Goa casino owner for some cash. He, in turn, is gets some dough from a businessman. An innocent passerby on a lonely highway is forced to give a lift to an injured stranger. Several stories displayed on parallel tracks merge towards the end.
The tongue-in-cheek humour endeavoured here falls horribly flat. Vinay Pathak and Ranvir Shorey are talents in themselves and explosive as a duo. But their chemistry and individual talents are underutilised and, for the most part, we see them mouthing dull dialogue, passing off as smart-alecky.
Kalki Koechlin gives an interesting performance, but her characterisation is too strait-jacketed. One really hopes someone will cast this actress in a role other than a prostitute or a gangster’s moll.
The writing has most of the characters (with names like Goti) speak tapori language. Sample: ‘kya horella tereko’ (what’s happening to you). The characters mouth these dialogues repetitively, even as scenes are stretched on and on.
Debut director Akshay Shere’s combo of multiple stories told in a non-linear format with a dose of black humour, while ambitious, is too familiar to be impressive.
Here’s a film then that’s convoluted when it didn’t have to be, grisly for effect, and too tedious for a crime caper. And even the Vinay Pathak-Ranvir Shorey coupling isn’t enough to salvage it.
Summing up, if you are really interested in the NEW AGE CINEMA Wave and don’t mind watching something out of the routine such as JOHNY GADDAR or SANKAT CITY then you may find EMOTIONAL ATYACHAAR much better than many recent big budget duds, which simply try to deceive the viewers with their grand looks and stars.