Subscription Subscription
Home > Entertainment News > Bollywood News > Article > Neeyat Movie Review Naah niyet

Neeyat Movie Review: Naah, niyet!

Updated on: 09 July,2023 06:59 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Mayank Shekhar |

I know Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None was rated her best novel yet. But, seriously, in 2023, it’s just terrible to have a deserted island scenario as a trigger/starting point for any story

Neeyat Movie Review: Naah, niyet!

Vidya Balan in Neeyat

Film: Neeyat
UA: Crime, mystery
Dir: Anu Menon
Cast: Vidya Balan, Ram Kapoor
Rating: 1.5/5

No, seriously—what kinda desi, old dude has a proper girlfriend on the side, along with the hot secretary, who pretty much doubles up as a life partner, besides a tight-squeeze, who’s married to the best buddy, and a bunch of blokes, singling, mingling, at a party in a private mansion in Scotland? Let’s see. 

This old gent here has also defaulted on massive bank loans in India. And while he seemingly has all the money in the world to host a grand soiree in Scotland with gora butlers, for his closest friends/family—thousands of his corporate employees haven’t been paid salaries over two years. Why they haven’t still left that job, I don’t understand. 

But let’s concentrate on this guy. Is he Modi, Choksi… No. One look at his neatly trimmed, thick, white stubble, and an impeccable sartorial sense, you know: Naam hai, Vijay. Mallya! That’s what actor Ram Kapoor would have you believe he plays in this picture.

Frankly, my dear, I really like Ram Kapoor. There is a certain swag for a cool, portly bloke that he so effortlessly carries—you just like to watch him on the screen. Any screen, even him petting his dog on Instagram will do. What’s he doing here, though. Trying too hard to pull off a dead script, really, that may not even belong on stage, forget YouTube. 

Which is true for the other top actors brought on board as well—Rahul Bose, in a creepy homosexual archetype; Shahana Goswami as the ditsy gold-digger variety; the GenZ star Prajakta Koli, as a youngling with a cokehead type boyfriend, who could well be modelled on Sidharth Mallya (who knows)…

Above all, of course, Vidya Balan, who’s saved for the last, walking in deliberately dressed shabby, with a devil-may-care attitude, that might fit the detective Miss Marple, alright!

Okay, so you can see some of the best performers around. The director of this film, Anu Menon (Waiting, Shakuntala Devi) has been generally quite lucky with snagging a great cast. 

But what did they even say yes to, signing up for this flick, that’s about the Mallya lookalike committing suicide, that turns out to be murder, where everyone in the mansion is a prime suspect? 

I know Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None was rated her best novel yet. But, seriously, in 2023, it’s just terrible to have a deserted island scenario as a trigger/starting point for any story. Let alone set in the First World, where a death will count for far more than a storm that’s cut all communication to the scene of crime.

That the good ol’ man has died seems to bother the people around him much less than the fact that they should now all quietly sit on their sofas, to figure who’s the murderer, knowing that they’re part of such a story. 

Even as the killing hasn’t stopped. The film thereafter feels like a supremely self-aware table-read, with actors reading their parts, as if it’s the plot that they will eventually film!

The inspiration is clear. That’s Knives Out (2019), for sure—theatrical footfalls of which had astounded the film industry, otherwise sworn to the thought that audiences only flock towards spectacle pix. 

Unsure why its sequel went straight to Netflix. If anything, the best Indian response to Knives Out, probably, was Honey Trehan’s Raat Akeli Hai (2020), set in a haveli of Uttar Pradesh. 

And as we speak, of Christie, in fact, Vishal Bhardwaj has dropped the pilot episode of his crime fiction series, Charlie Chopra, based on The Sittaford Mystery, that at least so far holds promise. Which is the thing with this genre. 

Its followers are serious geeks. You can’t get away with inanities such as this flick, where every minute the needle points to an individual. And what the writers have to show for it is a fresh conspiracy theory, that doesn’t once involve the viewers joining any dots, ever. Doesn’t work like that. 

Or you could simply go frivolous, for the heck of it, to bring in more mainstream audiences. Such as what Balan did with Bobby Jasoos (2014). It is one of her most under-rated movies, in the same way that this ranks among her dullest. 

Which descends from the old-man, industrialist-protagonist, within a few hours, listing his most “loved ones” that he’s gathered, as “leeches”, for no reason. 
That’s about the time the film also swiftly demotes itself from a whodunnit, to who cares! The characters mill around, regardless, assuming in their head that they have a clever masterpiece up their sleeve. The big reveal, so to say.

My favourite line in the film, though? “It’s dangerous to believe in your own bullshit.” Applies equally to Neeyat. Naah, wish had said niyet to this, totally.

"Exciting news! Mid-day is now on WhatsApp Channels Subscribe today by clicking the link and stay updated with the latest news!" Click here!

Register for FREE
to continue reading !

This is not a paywall.
However, your registration helps us understand your preferences better and enables us to provide insightful and credible journalism for all our readers.

Mid-Day Web Stories

Mid-Day Web Stories

This website uses cookie or similar technologies, to enhance your browsing experience and provide personalised recommendations. By continuing to use our website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. OK