Raat Akeli Hai: Review
Radhika Apte and Nawazuddin Siddiqui could not save this sinking ship.
Raat Akeli Hai from debutant director Honey Trehan is an engaging drama primarily due to the compelling performances of its two leads - Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Radhika Apte.
For anyone who is not familiar with this yet, let me spell it out for you. Netflix has failed to market its movies over and over again. It promoted Raat Akeli hai as a gripping murder mystery. In its execution, it is actually a drama revolving around class differences. This is not the first time Netflix has made this error. This was simply another failure that joined the long list.
Although the plot runs along predictable lines, the viewer remains glued till the climax purely because of the sincerity and authenticity of the characters.
Siddiqui plays the no nonsense cop Jatil Yadav, who uses his job as a way to distract himself from the loneliness he feels on the inside. Jatil longs for the day he will finally bring a bride home who loves him for his real self.
Apte is terrific as Radha, the mistress turned widow of the wealthy old Thakur whose murder investigation is the central plot of the movie. Her “character” or its lack thereof makes her a social pariah. She is prone to criticism and abuse simply because she chooses to embrace her past unapologetically.
As Yadav’s investigation moves further, he develops an oddly sympathetic attitude towards the young woman being held captive.
Shweta Tripathi, Tigmanshu Dhulia, and Aditya Srivastava’s performances complement the plot well. However, their work goes unnoticed because the plot fails to explore the intricacies of class struggles and patriarchal structure that pits women against each other.
The narrative touches upon shady politicians, corrupt policing, and preferential treatment for the ruling classes, but the slow paced portrayal doesn’t leave a lasting impact.
While Raat Akeli Hai may prove to be a lesson in observational storytelling for film enthusiasts, it is not a movie that will be loved by audiences seeking pure entertainment.