Haseen Dillruba, the latest offering from Netflix India, begins on a note of suspense. Just as the film’s female protagonist Rani (Taapsee Pannu) is about to enter her house, there is a huge explosion which kills her husband Rishu (Vikrant Massey). The misogynistic police officers don’t think twice before arresting Rani for plotting to kill her husband with the help of her lover Neel (Harshvardhan Rane). Since there is no murder weapon and the lover has escaped the scene, they grill Rani as hard as they can. They seem least interested in arresting the lover. After all, he is a man in a patriarchal society. But an example needs to be made out of the woman. So the case in charge, Inspector Rawat (Aditya Srivastava of CID fame), doesn’t leave any stone unturned. Writer Kanika Dhillon’s narrative follows a nonlinear structure with the events leading to the explosion unfolding in flashbacks as narrated by Rani to the inspector. When she refuses to plead guilty, the inspector even gets his female officers to brutally torture her. And when all his efforts fail he also forces her to take a polygraph test. But, all the while Rani proves to be the epitome of stoicism. Having passed the ultimately test of patriarchy, almost everyone around her gradually begins to see her with respect that was never accorded to her prior to the torture.
Haseen Dillruba is produced under the banner of Aanand L Rai’s Colour Yellow Productions and Bhushan Kumar’s T-Series with Rai, Kumar, Himanshu Sharma and Krishan Kumar serving as co-producers. The duo of Rai and Sharma is responsible for films such as Tanu Weds Manu, Raanjhanaa, and Tanu Weds Manu Returns. Now, there’s a great passage early on during the flashbacks when Haseen Dillruba’s screenplay stations itself in the familiar Rai-Sharma territory. It suddenly becomes a film about marriage that an average Indian viewer craves for. After all, it’s a time tested formula in a diverse and colorful country loves to see. It is no secret that festivities are an innate part of our lives. And marriage functions are the grandest of them all. For us, marriage is just not a union of two individuals but it’s an alliance of two families. It’s an occasion that gets everyone excited—be it the children, the young, or the old—for it is perceived as the greatest celebration of life. In short, the marriages are a singularly viable business. For Indian filmmakers, it’s a bankable subject like no other and no one understands this better than the Rai-Sharma duo. So, it’s really no surprise that Haseen Dillruba works best when it operates in the familiar Rai-Sharma territory. But, the moment its screenplay drifts into the Hitchcockian domain of mystery and suspense, it begins to lose its edge. It would really be interesting to find out how much influence the Rai-Sharma duo exercised on the film.
Now, a major trouble with the film is that Vinil Mathew’s direction fails to match the fast tonal shifts as well as the temporal and spatial fluctuations of Dhillon’s ambitious screenplay. It feels as if there is a huge gap between the screenplay and the director’s interpretation of the text. Speaking of the screenplay, Kanika Dhillon is known to borrow ideas from literary classics. While a 17th century French folklore called “Bluebeard” served as base for her screenplay of Judgementall Hai Kya, for Haseen Dillruba she looks towards Roald Dahl’s short story ‘Lamb to the Slaughter” for inspiration. Also, there are striking similarities to Michael Cristofer’s 2001 film Original Sin starring Angelina Jolie and Antonia Banderas. Some may also find a few similarities to Bryan Singer’s 1995 film The Usual Suspects. And the character of Rani is a huge fan of a local writer of pulp thrillers named Dinesh Pandit. So there’s actually a lot going on. The end result is a half-baked mishmash of ideas and genres
The film’s strongest point is the performances of the three lead actors. While the interesting pairing of Taapsee Pannu and Harshvardhan Rane holds a lot of promise, the screenplay somewhere lets them down. But, the duo certainly deserves another movie together given the promise they show here. It is Vikrant Massey who surprisingly owns Haseen Dillruba. From starting his career in television to playing hero’s sidekicks (Lootera and Half Girlfriend) to stints at character driven roles (Death in a Gunj, Lipstick Under My Burkha, and Chhapaak) to playing a boy next door character in Ginny Weds Sunny to portraying a well fleshed out protagonist with anti-heroic shades in Haseen Dillruba, Massey has indeed come a long way. During his performance, he goes through an entire gamut of emotions that reminds one of a young Shah Rukh Khan at the beginning of his career. Massey can simply use Haseen Dillruba as a vehicle to catapult himself to newer heights of stardom. But he must continue to show the same consistency with his selection of roles.
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SHAHID SURPRISES FANS BY SINGING SONGS FROM HIS UPCOMING ‘JERSEY’
NEW DELHI: On Saturday, the actor went live on his Instagram to share his joy at the phenomenal reception of the ‘Jersey’ trailer. When one of his fans requested him to sing a song, Shahid decided to surprise his fans by singing the title track of ‘Jersey’. Shahid sang ‘Mehram Tu Hi Hain Mera’. Shahid had more in store for them! He decided to sing another track from the movie. Jersey is slated to release on December 31 in the theatres.
JASS MANAK ENTERTAINS FLIGHT PASSENGERS WITH HIS HIT SONG ‘TENU LEHENGA’
MUMBAI: If you find yourself travelling on the same flight as popular singer Jass Manak, then get ready to have fun. A video has been doing the rounds on the internet in which Jass can be seen crooning to his hit song ‘Tenu Lehenga’ along with the passengers on a flight. “4000 ft up in the air 24/7 entertainment …thanku love u guys,” he captioned the clip. Jass’ video has left netizens super impressed. “Awww amazing,” singer Zara Khan commented. “How sweet. Passengers look so happy,” a fan commented. Jass’ song ‘Tenu Lehenga’ was recently recreated in John Abraham’s new film ‘Satyameva Jayate 2’.
I TAKE EXPERIENCES FROM MY OWN LIFE TO PERFORM ON CAMERA: HRITHIK
MUMBAI: Actor Hrithik Roshan, who is all geared up for his upcoming film ‘Fighter’, recently opened up on his process of working as an actor.
During an interaction at IFFI 2021, Hrithik was asked if actors actually feel certain emotions when they are drowned in the role. To this, the star replied “Every actor has his own process, there’s no process that’s wrong. I’m the kind of actor who takes from my own life. I’m usually sifting through my own memories and experiences and try to bring out something on camera which is my secret, it’s in my head. The emotion is real because I can feel it, it’s from my life and my experience.”
‘’I usually feel all my emotions and it’s great because if I hadn’t felt the emotions and the director said – Great shot! I’d know we’re not in sync,” he added.
Hrithik will be next seen in his much-awaited action movie ‘Fighter’ which is being directed by Siddharth Anand. The actor-director duo is collaborating for the third time with ‘Fighter’ after they have delivered hits .
ALIA, RANVEER SHOOT FOR ‘ROCKY AUR RANI KI PREM KAHANI’ AT QUTAB MINAR
NEW DELHI: Delhi is undoubtedly one of the favourite shooting hubs for filmmakers. Currently, director Karan Johar is in the capital for the shoot of his film ‘Rocky Aur Rani Ki Prem Kahani’, which stars Ranveer Singh, Alia Bhatt, Shabana Azmi, Dharmendra, and Jaya Bachchan.
A day ago, Ranveer and Alia were spotted at Qutab Minar, where they reportedly filmed a song from the film. Several pictures from the shoot have been doing the rounds on the internet. In the images, Ranveer can be seen wearing a white shirt, while Alia looks gorgeous in a white saree.
‘Rocky Aur Rani Ki Prem Kahani’, which is being produced by Dharma Productions and Viacom18 Motion Pictures, has been written by Shashank Khaitan, Ishita Moitra and Sumit Roy. It is expected to release next year. Also, Saif Ali Khan’s son Ibrahim is working as an assistant director on the film.
SIDHARTH STARTS SHOOTING FOR ‘YODHA’
MUMBAI : Actor Sidharth Malhotra has commenced the shooting of his film ‘Yodha’ on Friday. Sidharth on his media handle posted string of pictures from the sets to share the update with his fans. In the first image, he gave us a glimpse of the film’s clapperboard. In another image, he can be seen getting ready for his scene. We can spot him carrying a backpack. “Yodha begins,” he captioned the snap.
Backed by Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions, ‘Yodha’ is reportedly an aerial action film. Dharma Productions also shared photos as Sidharth began shooting for Yodha. The project is being helmed by Pushkar Ojha and Sagar Ambre.
DEEPIKA STARTS DUBBING FOR SHAKUN BATRA’S FILM
MUMBAI: Actor Deepika Padukone has started dubbing for Shakun Batra’s film.
On Thursday, she was spotted visiting a dubbing studio in Mumbai. In the pictures that surfaced on the Internet, Deepika can be seen wearing a black baseball cap and a black mask, matching with her casual black outfit. Apart from Deepika, Shakun Batra’s directorial also features Siddhant Chaturvedi and Ananya Panday. The film’s title and plot are yet to be disclosed.
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