Review: BLACKMAIL

Derails Rather Quickly


2 stars


Mini Review:


A toilet paper salesman attempts to infuse some life into his
marriage and comes home early to find his wife in bed with
another man. Instead of confronting them, he chooses to
blackmail them. This sets off a series of what ifs and
what then scenes that seem super chaotic and funny, but
nothing makes you really care. If Irrfan Khan weren’t as
talented as he is, this film would have fallen apart within
fifteen minutes.


Main Review:


The trailer of the film promised a funny, black comedy. And Irrfan
Khan’s presence in small films has proven to be magical time
and time again. He has this ability to bring that extra something
to every character he plays. So we swallow the doubt that crops
up instantaneously in our heads: Toilet rolls in an India which
chooses water over paper? You settle down to watch because you
are anticipating fun promised in the trailer and cuckolded husbands
make for a great joke.


However, the fun does not last. The silly soundtrack of ‘Bhaag
Bhaag DK Bose’ from Delhi Belly keeps popping up in your head
and you realise no matter how many naked butts are knifed, or
penguin dustbins are appropriated, this film is not as funny as
watching Imran Khan run helter skelter in a burqa followed by
his besties in Delhi.


So Kirti Kulhari is cheating on Irrfan Khan with Arunoday Singh.
You wish their illicit relationship were a tad more flamboyant
than just an ordinary affair. Remember that exaggerated Aamir
Khan character in Delhi Belly? Arunoday Singh is just not cut out
for it. But his wife is. Divya Dutta plays the rich drunk wife rather
well. She’s another bright spot in this chaos, but has very little
to do. And her father squeezing Arunoday Singh’s cojones is
funny maybe for a ten year old…


You wish the Delhi Belly cast had reassembled for Blackmail.
They had so much better comic timing. A bunch of friends
egging Imran Khan to blackmail and helping him through the
ensuing madness would have certainly been so much more fun.
And Irrfan Khan stealing photographs to masturbate to in the age
of cell phone wallpaper is not remotely funny on screen as it may
have been on paper. Suddenly that hateful diarrhea scene in
Delhi Belly seems so much classier than watching Irrfan Khan
with Bhabi and girlfriend photos. What’s worse, is watching
Omi Vaidya again on screen, doing the same ole. Who thought
of casting him?
  
So the laugh track in your head goes, ‘Haha – thud! Hahaha –
thud!’


Things begin to fall flat and crash just as rapidly as bodies. You
cannot believe the dark comedy went from black to making you
feel so blue so quickly. They should change the contrived
flickering neon from the film to say ‘this film sucks’.    


(this review appears on nowrunning dot com)

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