Mumbai, 16 Dec 2016 17:10 IST
Updated: 17 Dec 2016 11:38 IST
With the help of many characters, director Vishal Pandya manages to keep you hooked from start to end.
The trailer of Wajah Tum Ho was quite misleading. It suggested that erotica was the film's primary offering, with a dash of crime and no real substance. The feature film reverses the order. It is a murder mystery that keeps the audience interest alive till the end. Every time loose ends get tied up and you guess who the criminal might be, somebody is killed on live television and all your guesses get thrown out of the theatre.
Sameer Arora’s story is solid, replete with riveting twists and turns, while director-screenwriter Vishal Pandya gives it his best shot to bring forth an edge-of-the-seat mystery. What is the problem then? We will get to that in a moment.
The film opens at a lodge where rogue cop ACP Sarnaik has violated a young woman he picked up at a party. The next moment we see him being fed petrol till his stomach bursts — all this happens in a sophisticated chamber and is telecast live on Global Time Network (GTN).
Media mogul Rahul Oberoi (Rajneesh Duggal), who owns GTN, is the prime suspect. He is also in a cat-and-mouse game with inspector Kabir Deshmukh (Sharman Joshi). The bratty Rahul is defended by 'legal head' Siya (Sana Khan), who makes sure everybody knows who she is, just like her boss, who mouths dialogues equivalent to “tu jaanta nahi main kaun hun”.
Some technical jargon later, Siya says it is a case of network hacking. Is it that simple? Inspector Kabir and Ranveer Bajaj (Gurmeet Singh), state counsel and Siya’s boyfriend/work rival, don’t think so. So both start working to gather evidence and prevent another murder being telecast on live television.
Pandya introduces many characters and makes sure they are not ornamental. With the help of these characters, he manages to keep you hooked to the happenings on screen. Joshi’s inspector Kabir is a tough cop, loving father, and the one with the best punchlines. His ability to deliver these lines with a straight face makes his act enjoyable.
Coming to the problems, Pandya’s Wajah Tum Ho has many. His cast lets him down on a grand scale. Khan, Duggal, Singh all falter when it comes to delivering their dialogues, making serious situations unintentionally funny. A lot of cheesy lines are exchanged between Khan and Singh’s characters. How’s “Take me to a place where we won’t have any work to do except make love”? Now translate that into Hindi. Some credit has to be given to dialogue writer Virag Mishra for a sincere attempt, especially for Joshi’s lines. The delivery is where it falls flat.
Why on earth do these films ‘re-master’ classics like ‘Pal Pal Dil Ke Paas’ and ‘Aise Na Mujhe Tum Dekho’ and feel they can get away with such mediocre outcomes? Not one of those songs helps to take the narrative forward, nor do they justify the need for repackaging them for younger audiences. It would have been better for these audiences to have remained unaware of these classics instead of hearing these re-mastered abominations.
Director Pandya uses titillation, like in Hate Story 2 (2014) and Hate Story 3 (2015), to make a point, when there is clearly no need. The film could have been more impactful and tight minus the erotica and most definitely the songs.
If you can get past these glaring flaws, Wajah Tum Ho is an engaging ride.
Reviewed by Blessy Chettiar