Dobaaraa Movie Review | Filmfare.com
A young nurse named Antara (Taapsee Pannu) and her husband Vikas (Rahul Bhatt) have recently moved into a new home in Hinjewadi, Pune. They chance upon an old TV set, connected to a video camera, where they watch the antics of a boy who had resided in the house two decades ago. A freak storm ensues, and Antara is somehow able to communicate with the boy. He was a witness to a murder and was accidentally killed while fleeing a crime scene. Antara tells him of these dangers and saves his life. But in doing so, she changes her own timeline in the process and lands up in a parallel life where she’s married to someone else and, worse, doesn’t have a daughter. How she solves a 25-year-old murder in order to get her own life back forms the crux of the film.
Dobaaraa means again in Hindi. It’s also a play on words in the sense that it was 2:12 am (Do baraah in Hindi) in the night when the young boy got killed in the first timeline. The film is intriguing in the sense that when Taapsee wakes up in another timeline, her questions become your questions. She runs from pillar to post trying to find answers towards her new existence, and it’s logically all that you’d do too. It takes her time to come to terms with her new reality.
There is something called the Chaos Theory in mathematics, which deals with probabilities. It basically tells you that even small alterations can lead to strikingly different consequences. Taapsee’s character becomes aware of the paradox and tries her hardest to solve it, believing that it would ultimately lead her to her own plane of existence. It’s all very new and exciting. Marvel explored the concept recently on a grandiose scale in Spider-Man: No Way Home and in Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness, where even small attempts to alter timelines led to disastrous outcomes. So if you have seen the above movies, you won’t have a hard time understanding the concept of different realities existing side-by-side. For those who aren’t aware of the phenomenon, the going would get slightly confusing because the writing does get muddled somewhat in the middle.
The director is aware that Indian viewers or Hindi film viewers, by and large, wouldn’t be familiar with the multiverse theory. So there is too much explanation thrown in, which kind of hinders its narration. Cinema calls for a suspension of disbelief, and so we forget the complex narrative and its glitches because, despite it all, the film makes for engaging viewing.
Ultimately, it’s the performances that count. Saswata Chatterjee is one of our finest actors and channels his inner Sanjeev Kumar while playing the villain of the piece. But the film tells us that there are no heroes or villains, and ultimately we’re victims of circumstances, so both Saswata and Rahul Bhatt, who plays a caddish husband, get a chance at redemption. Pavail Gulati plays the strong and silent police inspector, who doesn’t let his past get in the way of duty, with consummate ease. It’s good to see him paired with Taapsee in a positive role after Thappad. The film revolves around Taapsee Pannu. She’s as natural as they come in the role of a woman who finds her circumstances altered overnight. She flows from one bewildering twist to another quite convincingly and makes you root for her character. Dobaaraa is another feather in her cap, alright.
Science fiction is not a genre that’s much taken up by our filmmakers. Anurag Kashyap has shown that you don’t need tonnes of money if you want to dabble in the genre. The film is a remake of the Spanish film Mirage (2018). Another lesson the film imparts is that remakes should concentrate on replicating the emotional core of the original, and as long as you’re able to do that, viewers will surely connect to it, even if they don’t understand the esoteric theories.
Trailer : Dobaaraa
Rachana Dubey, August 18, 2022, 12:32 PM IST
Story: In the 1990s, during a wild thunderstorm night, 12-year-old Anay dies in a road accident shortly after he sees his next-door neighbor covering up his wife’s murder. Twenty-five years later, in a strange turn of events, on an identical stormy night, Antara finds herself in front of a TV set through which she attempts to save Anay’s life. It sets in motion a chain of events that change the reality around her.
Review: The official remake of the Spanish film Mirage, Do Baaraa is set in Pune and oscillates between the mid-1990s and the current times. The chain of events sets in with 12-year-old Anay (…) getting bumped off by a heavy vehicle while trying to escape from his neighbor’s (Saswata Chatterjee) house after witnessing a crime. Twenty-five years later, Antara (Taapsee), a nurse at a local hospital, moves into Anay’s house as its new owner with her husband. On a stormy night, identical to the one on which Anay died, Antara, aware of Anay’s death, finds herself communicating with Anay through his old TV set and video cassette. In the course of doing that, she accidentally sets in motion a chain of events that changes her reality.
Anurag Kashyap’s retelling of Mirage is complex and keeps you hooked. Aarti Bajaj’s editing should get due credit for making the runtime engrossing for the most part. The film engages you from the first frame when you’re sucked into the feeling that something ominous is about to happen. As things begin to unfold one by one, you wonder where all of this is heading, hoping that course-correction for the characters’ journeys will find its way into the narrative at some point. It’s only sometime towards the fag end when one starts feeling restless with the runtime. Shortening the length a bit would have made the thriller even more taut.
Writer Nihit Bhave’s adapted screenplay (also the dialogue) is balanced – it doesn’t lose touch with the original while adding a plausible Indian touch to it. The character graphs are clean and simple. The screenplay also has a dash of straight-faced humor which is quite cool. The narrative sticks to its blueprint of being a romantic, time-travel thriller which is not too deep like a lot of Anurag’s other films, but subtly layered and complicated.
Taapsee Pannu and Pavail Gulati’s performances complement the writing and the tonality of the film. The narrative is centered on these two actors and their effort to get under the skin of their character is visible and the result is quite believable.
The film has two songs, although the plot didn’t need tracks to push the proceedings ahead. Also, in several places, the production design team needed to pay more attention to the finer details. Also, with Anurag and Taapsee in the mix, one expected a little more than what one gets from this film – that extra edge and emotional depth which makes their combination crackling to another degree.
Dobaaraa is an engaging thriller which is worth your time but do ensure that you don’t spend too much time munching the popcorn, lest you miss the beat. This one needs all your attention, so go dive in!