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Bollywood Movie Reviews

One Friday Night: Manish Gupta’s Thriller Falls Short Of Breadth



One Friday Night(Streaming on JioCinema)

Rating: **

Manish Gupta’s One  Friday Night could have been our own Fatal Attraction. Instead it ends up making the Other Woman more a victim than a  predator.

 Having said that, the entire  movement  of  the  thriller suggests there were seeds  of a reasonably  engaging extra-marital story.  But the outcome is neither  dark nor brave, just damp soggy and  diluted.

Soggy reminds me , the whole film is shot in the pouring rain. This torrential  affectation  does lend the  storytelling a certain dramatic tension, sadly lacking in other areas of  the presentation. The adulterous man Ram Verma(Anand Milind) remains,who is  largely in a semi-comatose condition, letting his wife Lata(referred  to  as  ‘Lataji’  all through , reminding us of the Singing Goddess) and his sinfully young mistress Niru(Vidhi Chitalia) do all the heavy lifting,in more ways than one.

The  barb-re-barb  exchanges  between  the two women with the younger woman bravely  insisting Ram Verma  loves her and not the wife, are  stymied by a purposeless  shock-ending which made  no   except  to give the  audience a textbookish jolt.

The age difference between the  wife and mistress  as also the latter’s immaturity and inexperience was a theme that needed to be worked on. The work wears  a worrisomely hurried look.When  the wife Raveena receives  an ominous call  from a woman claiming to be with her injured husband,  the enormity  of the  revelatory  moment is lost , as the  plot quickly moves to the  next thrilling moment.

Whose side  is  Manish Gupta’s script on?  He clearly doesn’t want the  mistress to  be demonized. At  the same time he doesn’t want the wife to walk away with all  the sympathy. Consequently we are  left hanging on to  a cliffhanger which  has  no cliff.

While Raveena struggles to  add meat to her skeletal part,. Milind Soman has  little to do except lie inert. Newcomer Vidhi Chitalia  exudes a cluelessness that isn’t entirely a part of her character.

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