Chehre’s Film Review: Amitabh Bachchan-Emraan Hashmi’s Thriller Uses Judicial Theatricality, Wastes a Good Idea | Bollywood
It takes a lot to spoil such a captivating premise with bad writing. But director Rumi Jafry’s Chehre does just that. The film starts off on a promising note, but it soon begins to tumble. Chehre is so weird after a certain point that even seasoned actors like Amitabh Bachchan, Anu Kapoor, and Emraan Hashmi are unable to meet the script. While everything looks perfect on paper, it just doesn’t translate to onscreen.
Delhi-based advertising agency boss Sameer Mehra (Emraan Hashmi) finds himself stranded in a hailstorm, and four retired justice officials invite him to spend the night in their haunted house-like bungalow in an isolated mountain resort. Sameer doesn’t know these elders are doing mock trials with strangers as a hobby, and they’ve found their last guinea pig. Reluctant at first, he gives in to their twisted “game”.
Watch the Chehre trailer here:
Amitabh Bachchan is eccentric prosecutor Lateef Zaidi, Annu Kapoor the hilariously serious defense attorney Paramjeet Singh Bhuller, Dhritiman Chatterjee as the unmoved judge Judge Jagdish Acharya and Raghubir Yadav plays the ever-excited prosecutor Hariya Jatav. Together these four men create a lot of drama, deliver sharp lines, but everything goes through great turbulence before it has a soft landing.
In this court of law, which they like to call “real game”, there is no “insaaf” but “fairela” – no justice, only judgment. And that’s the build-up we see for nearly two hours and 20 minutes when Sameer goes on trial for the murder of his boss.
Chehre is a thriller that doesn’t cause a stir. It’s captivating but the twists and turns, at times, are so predictable. There are many times when the story Ranjit Kapoor writes seems unconventional, but unfortunately, just when things seem exciting, it stretches so much that it ends up losing momentum. You wish there was a little more thought about the fitment, and maybe it could have been a sharper watch.
The dialogues, co-written by Rumi and Ranjit, are so heavy that they tend to be overwhelmed by their own weight. There are also a lot of ‘shayari’, but you can only enjoy these Hindi literature lectures to a certain extent. However, some one-liners elicit laughter.
Here I want to mention the approximately 7 minute monologue that Amitabh Bachchan delivers. From the Nirbhaya rape case to the fate of the victims of acid attacks, Uri’s surgical strikes and the Indo-Pakist tensions, he touches everything under the sun in one fell swoop, without get to the heart of the matter. Looks like he’s filibustering. This is all coming from a good place, but the execution has serious problems. Watching Kartik Aaryan’s monologue from Pyaar Ka Punchnama would be a better alternative to this preaching.
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Amitabh and Emraan’s confrontation sequences are thrilling. Annu Kapoor, too, embellishes things with her Punjabi accent. Rhea Chakraborty (Anna), the mysterious housekeeper and painter, is lost playing a half-baked character who won’t let her do much. So is Siddhanth Kapoor (Joe), who can’t speak. Krystle D’Souza (Natasha Oswal) for her first big screen release is pretty impressive. There’s also Samir Soni, as Emraan’s boss and Krystle’s on-screen husband, but his overaction can simply be ignored.
Chehre cannot be called a gripping drama in court. Let’s just say Rumi Jafry tried something out of his comfort zone, but his movie is just watchable.
Director – Rumi Jafry
To throw -Amitabh Bachchan, Emraan Hashmi, Annu Kapoor, Krystle Dsouza, Rhea Chakraborty