Cast: Raveena Tandon, Arpita Chatterjee, Ashish Bisht, Gaurav Nanda
Producers: Onir, Sanjay Suri
Writers: Onir, Merle Kröger
What's Yay: Nothing
What's Nay: Screenplay, Direction
Popcorn Refill: A quick refilling of your popcorn tub in between the film won't do you much harm.
Iconic Moment: None
A young lad Mohan (Suraj Bisht) from 'Garhwal' relocates to Delhi to become a model. He lands straight into a modelling competition where boys clad in undies are being asked lowbrow questions on why they should win the title. When Mohan calls his smile his biggest asset, the team of judges including the social butterfly Sonal Modi (Raveena Tandon) ridicules and rejects him.
Call it luck or so, Mohan chances upon Sonal's visiting card and gets in touch with her. She invites him home and slips into a lacy nightgown ultimately seducing him. Once the act is done, she slips a stack of cash into his hands and rechristens him as Afzar, her toyboy whom she introduces as her trainer to the world.
In a parallel track, a coffee shop waitress named Raina (Arpita Chatterjee) lives a double life and has a dark secret. Her boss, Neil (Areesz Ganddi) is a homosexual man who is ghosted. (Areesz Ganddi). Her neighbour is a French national named Benoit (Simon Frenay) who is unable to erase a tragedy from his past.
Shab revolves around how the stories of these characters intersect with each other and leave a major impact on their lives.
Onir's Shab features a three part narrative with the titles- Monsoon, Autumn and Winter each talking about the changes in moods of the characters' relationships. While the idea may seem great on paper, it doesn't translate effectively on the big screen. The narratives run haywire throwing you into a fit of confusion at several junctures.
Raveena Tandon and Ashish Bist deliver what the script demands but fail to touch your hearts. Arpita Chatterjee is spontaneous but once again it's the writing which lets her down. Simon Frenay and Areesz Ganddi put up a good show. Sanjay Suri's cameo adds no value to the film.
Even at the run-time of 108 minutes, Shabh seems a lazy paced film. Irene Dhar Malik and Onir's editing looks a bit wobbly at places when it comes to narration.
O Saathi by Arijit Singh is a melodious composition. The rest of the songs too make a good listen but fail to make its way onto your lips.
Shab falters when it comes to execution and leaves you unsatiated with lots of questions lingering in your mind without an answer. Definitely not one of Onir's remarkable films! Giving it a miss won't make a difference.