Bollywood filmmakers have used blindness as an interesting aspect in their movies and most of these films have turned out to be interesting fares. In recent times, films like KAABIL , AANKHEN , BLACK , FANAA , LAFANGEY PARINDEY  etc featured blind characters and it gave a distinct touch to the film. Now, Sriram Raghavan, known for his crime thrillers, uses this aspect in his latest fare, ANDHADHUN. So does it turn out to be a thrilling flick? Or does it fail? Let’s analyse.
Sriram Raghavan, Arijit Biswas, Yogesh Chandekar and Pooja Ladha Surti’s story is inspired from the French short film L’ACCORDEUR [writer and director: Olivier Treiner]. However, a lot of changes have been done and it’s praiseworthy. Sriram Raghavan, Arijit Biswas, Yogesh Chandekar and Pooja Ladha Surti’s screenplay is flawless in the first half and is bound to leave viewers stunned. The second half becomes a bit routine and unrealistic. Sriram Raghavan, Arijit Biswas, Yogesh Chandekar and Pooja Ladha Surti’s dialogues are sharp and witty.
Sriram Raghavan’s direction is terrific. In the past, he has made some great urban thrillers like EK HASINA THI , JOHNNY GADDAAR  and BADLAPUR . ANDHADHUN is more in the JOHNNY GAADAAR zone and he treats the plot very well. The dark humour element comes out beautifully and that helps the film from becoming too gory or disturbing. Also, his love for the 70s Hindi cinema comes to the fore and it adds to the film’s charm. If only he had done something about the glitches in the second half, ANDHADHUN would have been a game changer!
ANDHADHUN’s first half is simply out of this world! The introduction of the characters is great and soon, the plot begins to unfold. There are surprises after every 10-15 minutes. The real fun however begins when Pramod Sinha gets murdered and Akash reaches his residence. This scene is seen to be believed! All scenes from hereon take the film to dizzying heights – whether it’s the scene at the police station or Manohar visiting Akash’s residence or Akash visiting Pramod’s residence the second time or the prayer meeting. The intermission point raises tension levels significantly. The second half begins with a bang and even a shocker. Although this hour also keeps the viewers gripped, the film begins to drop and get unconvincing. The proceedings become far-fetched which is not the case in the first half. Newer characters are added while a significant character from the first half gets sidelined. In fact, the first and second halves seem like two different films. The climax is interesting and watch out for the final scene!
Ayushmann Khurrana has done unconventional but mostly light films till now. ANDHADHUN is his first intense flick and he excels. This is a very challenging role as his character has lot of shades and a secret to hide. But he puts up an excellent act. He’s unforgettable in the sequence where Pramod Sinha is killed and also in the scene immediately after intermission. Ayushmann already has a wonderful filmography and this flick will add a lot of weightage. Tabu delivers a bravura performance as expected. The manner in which she plays the mind games and tries to manipulate the situations at various points is quite fun. Radhika Apte plays a chirpy character and delivers a fine performance. Sadly, she has very little to do in the second half. Anil Dhawan is terrific and leaves a mark. Manav Vij’s entry scene is chilling and notice how he conveys a lot merely with his eyes. A first-rate performance! Ashwini Kalsekar (Rasika) is too good and rocks in the scene wherein she’s discussing the murder of Pramod Sinha. Zakir Hussain (Dr Swami) is quite quirky and contributes to the fun quotient. Gopal Singh (Sub inspector) is fine. Chhaya Kadam (Maushi) is an actor to watch out for. Kabir Sajid (the kid) is too good and too funny. The actors playing Murli, Mrs D’Sa are nice.
On the whole, ANDHADHUN is a thriller par excellence. Very rarely does Bollywood deliver a thriller that shocks and stuns you so well. Although the second half does drop, the impact is made and this would surely result in a good word of mouth. Recommended!
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