Due to recent pandemic, our cinematic interaction has stopped, but thanks to the OTT platform, we still get out a dose of entertainment. Different people have a different choice over kinds of cinema to choose, one of the loved and praised genre is a thriller. Raat Akeli Hai (2020), a recent addition to Netflix is a mystery thriller.
A movie set in Kanpur is where we see inspector Jatil Yadav (Nawazuddin Siddiqui), who gets assigned to a murder case. On his visit, he gets to know it’s about the death of a powerful politician in Kanpur, Thakur Raghubeer Singh (Khalid Tyabji), in his bedroom, with a gunshot wound and multiple stab marks on his second wedding night. He immediately starts the investigation; he considers everyone present in the house is a suspect. The joint family involves his pregnant daughter Karuna (Shweta Tripathi) Raghubeer Singh’s widowed sister (Padmavati Rao), niece Vasudha (Shalini Raghuvanshi), and nephew Vikram (Nishant Dahiya) along with the domestic help Chunni (Riya Shukla) and longtime mistress now wife Radha (Radhika Apte).
Jatil swiftly figures out that it’s an insidious job, and he has stepped into a pit of highly venomous vipers. As per the family, Thakur’s mistress-turned-bride Radha is the killer. But no family member is above suspicion. The impulsive daughter’s husband (Gyanendra Tripathi) also hopes to get his hand on father-in-law’s assets because his young brother-in-law is a junkie barely in control of his mental faculties. While Jatli is trying to solve the murder mystery, his Senior Superintendent of Police Lalji Shukla (Tigmanshu Dhulia), and an Independent MLA Munna Raja (Aditya Srivastava) step in his way. The story turns darker, strikes your question over the truth, and whose motivations you believe.
Established casting director Honey Trehan makes his directorial debut with this film. He steadily led to execute this complex set-up of way with too many twists and turns. Writer Smita Singh masterfully manages a whip-smart screenplay, a taut, gripping murder mystery that probes the hideous repercussions of patriarchy in a severely dysfunctional family. The cinematography of Pankaj Kumar is fantastic; it beautifully captures the narrow lanes, and the musty interior of the palace gives a needed tone to the Nawazuddin role. Music of Sneha Khanwalkar goes a bit over the board, where instead of slow music, you find outplaced tunes. Despite many characters, the narrative’s coherence doesn’t let you move much in the 150 minutes, which could be trimmed. Still, it maintains the fantastic rest of the story.
Speaking of acting being a casting director, the director has made a perfect choice in choosing the really talented artists like Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Radhika Apte and Shweta Tripathi. Nawaz again delivers a magnificent portrayal as Jatil Yadav, the anger in his eyes, the aura he creates and the way he carries it is really amazing. Radhika Apte also plays an important role. All other casts give significant contributions to make this murder mystery shine more.
The ‘Raat’ in the title refers beyond the hours between dawn and sundown – it plays a crucial part in the sequences and its perceptible complexion and the setting’s abrasive haziness. The baseline of Raat Akeli Hai will remind you of Rian Johnson’s 2019 Knives Out in the right way. This murder mystery is appealing and captivating, a punctilious shaped stickler cast in the exemplary frame. It dispenses with dreadful acts of virtuous immorality, but the film navigates explicit disgraceful sleaze, Graphic violence, and foul dialect. Story about a cop in finding the murderer, but it keeps tattered out treaty down to the minimum. It unrolls in devilry visible and felt.
Raat Akeli Hai is a must-watch, despite the dark undertone throughout it among the best whodunit thrillers with excellent performance of start cast, where there you are a fan of mystery or not. A slow burn takes it times to burn, but when its burn it strikes high, it sends you on a wild goose chase, exploring the shady dealings between the police-politicians and the unspoken reality.