Film: Vodka Diaries
Cast: Kay Kay Menon, Raima Sen, Mandira Bedi, Sharib Hashmi, Rishi Bhutani, Herry Tangri, Swati Rajput, Vaishnavi Dhanraj, Mohammed Ali Shah, Sooraj Thapar, Dipoo Srivastava, Rahul Kapoor, Antara Srivastava, Vikram Sahalkar
Director: Kushal Srivastava
Rating: * * ½
The misty town of Manali becomes yet another (remember ‘Death in the Gunj?’) setting for a series of mysterious murders that happened in a single night. And it’s up to ACP Ashwini Dixit (Kay Kay Menon), who is aiming to do a Hercule Poirot, by attempting to solve the crimes that inadvertently seem connected to a night club named Vodka Diaries.
Embellished with contrived twists and turns in narration, this crime/mystery/thriller sets out to impress but it’s all a deception if you ask me. The director aims for novelty while building up the suspense but the genre tricks play false and the mystery just plays out facile and unbelievable.
The cat and mouse chase is framed in such a way as to create psycho-pathological impact but it’s way too fragile a tool and only ends up giving way as a disorder manifests itself. And it’s not something an audience can hold on to. Even though director Kushal Srivastava tries hard to impress, there’s little here to keep you rooted.
The flagrant disregard for genre staples may be welcome but the story-telling is definitely not flamboyant enough, nor is it relatable. The actors fail to reign in their warts and the director appears to be done in by an alarmingly fetid imagination. This film is in fact, as delusional as its lead character. It does seem like ‘Vodka Diaries’ was made under the influence!