Raat Akeli Hai released on Netflix. One of the things that intrigued me to watch it was the director Honey Trehan. I had enjoyed watching ‘Death in the Gunj’ – the detailing in the movie and the ability to make the ensemble cast play like an orchestra was stunning. Of course the leads in this movie Nawazuddin Siddique (Inspector Jatil Yadav) and Radhika Aapte (Radha) are no less an enticing combination to see the movie.
Like in his earlier movie Honey Trehan gets the ensemble cast in a boundary and then lets the characters stretch the boundaries and the story revolves around the dynamics of these characters. And of course Honey Trehan and his flair for suicides in the climax.
The movie shows us the ugly face of the society. The patriarchy and the extent we will go to defend it. How women are expected to accept it and men expected to exercise. How mothers compromise their daughters for a better tomorrow for their sons. How family honor is more important than a woman’s honor. How the police and system can be manipulated to serve the political masters. The movie shows the frailty of humans. The undecided, the many faced, the ever changing and that’s why the characters seem so real. Incomplete in our own but sufficient for others.
The movie starts with the murder of Raghuveer Yadav on his wedding night. He is getting married to his mistress Radha, of 5 years and much younger to him. She becomes the obvious suspect to kill the husband and inherit all of his wealth. Raghuveer Yadav ‘s family consists of his daughter, son, son-inlaw, his brothers wife and her children. It also has Raghuveer Yadav’s friend Munna Raja, the local MLA. The gruesomeness of the murder suggests an act of vengeance and not mere killing.
Inspector Jatil Yadav is given the case and he remembers an old connection with Radha, where he once saves her from jumping off the train. He somehow believes that Radha is innocent and wants to get to the bottom of this. However, the family and the MLA want her convicted immediately and close the case. And as it happens in most whodunits the protagonist faces the hurdles and every lead he gets turns out to be false and the aid murdered. He starts questioning his own faith in Radha and is convinced that she knows more than she is telling.
The climax is good and the end not easily predictable. The screenplay is tight and keeps you engaged and the direction good. The cinematography remains true to its name and most of the film is shot in the dark. The background score is done well and in suspense thrillers the music and the silent moments have to be top notch to keep the audience enthralled.
The scenes between Nawazuddin and Radhika are a treat to watch. Such fantastic actors. The tension and the attraction palpable. The other cast has done a decent job as well. Yearn to see more of Shweta Tripathi. And I wish more roles were offered to Tigmanshu Dhulia.
Watch it guys. If you like whodunits and mysteries you should like the movie.