Red Chillies Entertainment, B.R. Studios and Dharma Productions’ Ittefaq (UA) is a suspense thriller. Remake of the 1969 film of the same name, it is about two murder cases.
Vikram Sethi (Sidharth Malhotra) is a well-known Indian author who is based out of London. He is currently in India for the release of his new book. His wife, Katherine (Kimbereley McBeath), is found dead in the hotel room and since Vikram is the prime suspect, he is on the run from the police who are giving him a hot chase.
Vikram takes refuge in the home of a stranger, Maya Sinha (Sonakshi Sinha). As bad luck would have it, Maya’s lawyer-husband, Shekhar Sinha (Samir Sharma), is also found murdered that night in the Sinhas’ home, and Vikram is accused of murdering Shekhar Sinha too. Or was the murder committed by Shekhar’s own wife, Maya?
Investigating police officer Dev Verma (Akshaye Khanna) has only three days to solve the two murder cases. As investigations progress, it is revealed that a girl, who was the subject of Vikram’s latest book, had just recently committed suicide. A lot of other revelations follow.
Is Vikram Sethi the murderer? Why did he murder his wife and a lawyer? Are the two murders interlinked? Or has Vikram murdered only Katherine? In that case, did Maya murder her husband? Why? Or have the two murders or has one murder been committed by an outsider?
Abhay Chopra, Shreyas Jain and Nikhil Mehrotra have written an interesting story inspired by the 1969 Ittefaq. It is not a frame-to-frame copy of the old film, though. Since the story has many twists and turns, it keeps the audience thoroughly engaged and involved. The story is written in such a style that Dev Verma is shown interrogating both, Vikram and Maya, in parts and by turns. Therefore, the same drama is revealed from two different points of view – and the audience doesn’t know who is lying and who is speaking the truth. Some viewers might, at times, take sides with Vikram, some might sometimes think that Maya is right, and some others might often feel that both are lying – but it is this quality of the story which keeps the audience completely involved.
The trio’s screenplay is very engaging and it doesn’t allow the audience to think for even a moment. So much is happening so fast that the viewers just cannot allow their minds to wander. An interesting aspect about the screenplay is that humour has been knit beautifully into the tension-ridden drama, preventing the film from becoming too tense and boring. In fact, the humour keeps the viewers entertained differently from how the murder mystery keeps them entertained. Since the screenplay is well-written, the viewers find themselves trying to solve the murder mystery and getting involved in the guessing game.
Abhay Chopra, Shreyas Jain and Nikhil Mehrotra’s dialogues are excellent. The humorous dialogues evoke laughter while the others help in building the suspense and the tension.
Sidharth Malhotra does justice to his role and acts reasonably well. He looks very handsome. Sonakshi Sinha performs quite well, enough for the audience to either believe her or disbelieve her – which is what the character’s demand is. Akshaye Khanna is outstanding. As Dev Verma, he nails it completely. His voice modulation, his expressions, his nuances and his easy acting, all add up to a brilliantly noteworthy performance. His humorous one-liners are superb. Pavail Gulati lends lovely support as Chirag. Himanshu Kohli (as police inspector Gautam Kohli) is adequate. Vinay Sharma leaves a fine mark as police inspector Kadam. Ajay Jadhav evokes a lot of laughter in the role of hawaldar Tambe. Samir Sharma (as Shekhar Sinha) and Kimbereley McBeath (as Katherine Sethi) provide decent support. Trupti Kamkar (as Mrs. Kawatkar), Mandira Bedi (as Dev’s wife, Gayatri Verma), Bharat Jha (as Mr. Kawatkar), Romil (as the commissioner of police), Sandesh Upsham (as constable Gawde) and Sujata Jog (as the maid) make their presence felt. Others fit the bill.
Abhay Chopra’s direction is so polished that it doesn’t look like this is his debut film. Kudos to him for keeping the narrative so engaging and for extracting good work from out of his cast. BT’s background music (supervised by John Stewart Eduri) is lovely. Michal Sebastian Luka’s cinematography is outstanding. Bindiya Chhabria and Nari’s production designing is very nice. Nitin Baid’s editing is sharp and lovely.
On the whole, Ittefaq is an entertaining fare. Although its start is slow, collections will pick up by positive word of mouth of the class audience mainly. The film will hence keep the audience and the investors happy.