- 29 Dec - 04 Jan, 2019
- 18 Nov - 24 Nov, 2017
There are two kinds of thrillers – one where you don’t know what to expect in the next moment and the other where everything is evident from the first frame. Abhay Chopra’s Ittefaq falls in the second category making it a waste of time despite the best effort of Akshaye Khanna to make it look like a better film. Yes, it has two murders and as many suspects as suggested by the trailer but the amateurish treatment takes away the thrill that could have made this film a classic remake. Had the film not been made by his grandfather B. R. Chopra, I doubt whether Abhay would have been able to use the name, because except for the name, the film shares nothing with the original.
It was in 1969 that Yash Chopra directed a classic with no songs where Rajesh Khanna played a man jailed for a crime he didn’t commit; when the second murder happens in his presence, the police becomes suspicious and so begins the game of cat and mouse that ends in the climax. In the current version playing in cinemas, Sidharth Malhotra plays Vikram Sethi, a Non-Resident Indian novelist whose wife seemingly gets murdered in his absence and when he runs away from police custody and ends up in a random house, another murder takes place with him being present at the crime scene. The police suspect him (as expected) while he blames the victim’s wife (Sonakshi Sinha) who claims innocence, putting all the blame on Sidharth’s character.
The film’s saving grace is Akshaye Khanna who plays the top cop for the second time since his return to films this year; not only does he solve the case in less than three days given to him, but he also manages to engage the audience with his weird interrogation techniques and bossy attitude. Sidharth Malhotra has shown improvement in his last few films but he looks the same in all his characters which is something the audience will get used to in the future; he has to make some adjustments so that people look forward to his films rather than ignoring them. Sonakshi Sinha doesn’t fit the role of the sexy wife at all and that could be the film’s weakest link. Had the role been played by someone who fitted the character, the film might have done better than its current business.
On the whole, Ittefaq can be termed as the classic example of a film killed by overconfidence. The story seems to have been borrowed from all those films that had a twist at the climax but even then, the twist at the end could be seen from half a mile. The inability of the film to not surprise the audience makes it an ideal watch on DVD or on cable TV because frankly speaking, money spent on such a film is money wasted. There should be a law in Bollywood against remaking classics with the same name because its attempts like these that destroy a legacy, instead of taking it forward. Abhay Chopra must first fulfil his legacy as third-generation director before tarnishing his family’s good work. •
There should be a law in Bollywood against remaking classics with the same name because its attempts like these that destroy a legacy, instead of taking it forward.