When the film starts off highlighting a strong quote by Jeremy Bentham "Witnesses are the eyes and ears of the justice", the audiences are delighted to seek insights on such an important subject, getting entertained at the same time but this is not the case with Pia Sukanya's film. With a run time of 108 minutes, we see too many things happening and the crucial subject is blurred with an unnecessary convolution in the narrative.
Revolving around the central character Meghna played by Radhika Apte who is a PR by profession; depressed in her own emotional affair gets in a roadside brawl due to an accident with a guy (Siddhanth Kapoor) and meanwhile, a third person Abhishek (Akshay Oberoi) jumps in to create an impression. Things get out of control as a biker runs away with Meghna's phone and moped as he is following the input of a witness from a high profile case who is a crooked old man who has a parcel to pass on.
The film has two antagonists, Minister Pandya (Adil Hussain) who is the piped piper handling things at the top level and undercover officer CID Gujral played by Amit Sial, an encounter specialist who keeps changing identity from his original name is Mr. Dmello. Things get more complicated as film star Karan Kapoor (Ravi Kishan) is immersed into the narrative and it is Meghna's MMS with him which is in the phone that Siddhant runs away with. Shilpa Shukla plays Irawati Angre the Home Minister and love interest of Karan Kapoor and her rivalry with Pandya aka Adil Hussain is showcased as she tears off her election campaign poster.
The first half is slow paced and we do look out for a loo break as these characters are unestablished and they do not even hold the audiences with sensible dialogues nor their 'Bambaiya' mannerism is highlighted which is surely a conviction-less affair. A forced mess is another thing that would get under your skin as an audience and also the makers could have opted a much more serious approach towards the film as Black comedy is not a genre for such a subject through a few quirky moments.
At places forced comical scenes look fabricated and the motive is yet unclear in the context of a jumbled tumbling proceedings. An investigative drama could have been the genre makers could have approached but the slightest pinch of humour doesn't manage to tickle our funny bones. The second half showcases the fix of a missing jigsaw puzzle as the parcel of the old man was his dying declaration, a death testimony that would be admissible in the court and it is a back-story of crime happened almost 10 years ago. The climax scene where Home minister Irawati Angre speaks in a media conference of bringing a witness protection act in the judiciary system and that one line in the entire film is laudable.
Two notable songs in the precise feature-film are 'Sajde Karoon' and 'Bairiya' both are emotionally entwining number and are quite involving as well. The story by Aarti S. Bagdi doesn't do justice and the restless screenplay by Michael E. Ward and Pia Sukanya spoils a substance full film. Shaky cinematography and not so alluring shots by DOP Karthik Ganesh can be one more reason but the seemingly low production value catering into Borivali National Park, Worli, Mahim, Goregaon Film City and Bandra would surely conclude it a low budget film.
Overall the subject is blurred and the complications are stressed. This Pia Sukanya film fails to convince the audiences of the importance of the witness in the pending court cases of the Nation. Nor it explains how well can we implement the witness protection act via parliamentary procedures. Shallow writing and lakh of explanation have made it a dull affair. Can skip it for sure!
Cast :Ravi Kishan, Shilpa Shukla, Akshay Oberoi, Radhika Apte