"Tumhara mind idhar phile dots jod raha hain," a character in Anurag Kashyap's latest thriller Dobaaraa tells Antara (Taapsee Pannu) when the latter ends up at a hospital after a chain of events sets her life upside down.
This scene totally summed up the state of my mind when the word 'intermission' flashed on screen. Until this block, there wasn't a single minute where my eyes left the screen. What if I miss out a crucial detail? Yes, Anurag & co. keep the pace that taut in Dobaaraa! So, does the film in totality strike the right chord? Let's find out.
What's Yay: Performances, Anurag Kashyap's effective storytelling
What's Nay: The timeline of events ain't well defined
Set in Pune, Dobaaraa begins with Antara Bhatt (Taapsee Pannu), a local nurse moving into a new house with her husband and her daughter. She soon learns that her abode was previously inhabited by a 12-year-old boy Anay who was run over by a heavy vehicle after he witnessed an unfortunate event during a thunderstorm twenty-six years ago.
Cut to present, Antara finds a television in her new house on the night of a similar storm. When she switches it on, she finds Anay on screen. Antara begins to communicate with him. Antara, who learnt about Anay's death from a friend, tries to stop him from falling into a mishap.
But little does Antara know that her 'tweaking' of the past events have triggered a chain of events which will push her down the rabbit role and make her question her sanity!
An official remake of the Spanish film Mirage, Anurag Kashyap along with writer Nihit Bhave adapt Dobaaraa in an engaging way with 'twists' neatly tucked into it. There are enough moments to keep you glued to your seats. Kashyap and team make sure that the tension is palpable in their time-travel thriller.
Having said that, one wished the makers had focused a little more on defining the timeline of the events. Since Dobaaraa slips off a bit in that department, there are times when it takes you a while to grasp the events unfolding on the screen.
Parallel universes, a murder and some time travelling; the movie ticks all the boxes except one i.e emotional depth of certain characters. Anurag's treatment is a little superficial there.
After Amitabh Bachchan-starrer Badla, Taapsee Pannu gets another chance to step into Oriol Paulo's world of twisty thrillers with Dobaaraa. As expected, the actress puts her best foot forward and delivers an act that's both electrifying as well as mystifying.
Next comes Pavail Gulati who walks shoulder to shoulder with Taapsee and breathes life into his written part. Sashwata Chatterjee manages to send shivers down your spine even with his limited screen space. Rahul Bhat as the cheating spouse adds some light moments in the otherwise mind-boggling narrative.
Cinematographer Sylvester Fonseca with his right balance of warm and cool hues, adds more depth to the dense atmospheric thrills. Aarti Bajaj's tight hold on the editing scissors keep the film crisp.
The tracks in Taapsee Pannu's Dobaaraa work more as a vehicle to take the plot forward than standalone music album. However, what pinches is that the songs lack a recall value.
While trying to the crack the jigsaw puzzle of her life, Taapsee Pannu's Antara exclaims, "Matlab mein past mein jaake, past badal diya. Uske wajah se present badal diya."
On a similar note, Anurag Kashyap and Taapsee Pannu revisit Oriol Paulo's Mirage and pull off a winner out of it despite some rough weather on the way.
We give 3 stars out of 5 to Taapsee Pannu's Dobaaraa.