The Tashkent Files Review Thread-Shweta Basu Prasad, Pallavi Joshi etc

RheaSingh thumbnail
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Posted: 5 years ago
#1
Post all reviews and discussion for the Tashkent Files in This Thread

Review: The Tashkent Files is a hard-hitting film

April 12, 2019 13:34 IST


The writeImage result for shweta basu prasad tashkent filesrs have smartly targeted several politicians without mentioning them, says Ramesh S.

The '70s era witnessed films like Aandhi, Kissa Kursi Ka and Nasbandi, which found inspiration in the country's then political scenario.

They managed to get their point across without directly referencing any political party or political leader.

Now, though, filmmakers are daringly attempting movies that have direct references to riots, the Partition, war, the armed forces and political conspiracies.

The Tashkent Files is one such film. It looks at the questions surrounding the sudden death of India's second prime minister, Lal Bahadur Shashtri.

The protagonist is a young political journalist, Ragini Phule (Shweta Basu Prasad). Inspired by a anonymous call and armed with basic facts about Shastri's death, Ragini writes several articles in her newspaper.


The impact this creates forces the government to form a committee headed by Opposition leader Shyam Sunder Tripathi (Mithun Chakraborty). The committee is charged with investigating if Shastri's death was the result of foul play.

The screenplay -- clearly, some research has gone into it -- is deftly woven and blends fact with fiction.

The Tashkent Files' usage of real footage, including political statements, newspaper headlines, letters, books and articles lends it a feeling of authenticity. 

The second half of the film reveals several lesser known details, which come as a shocking eye-opener. But, to reach the second half, one has to wade through the lethargic first half.

The debate and discussion that take place in the committee meetings are engaging as well as intriguing; it brings back memories of Basu Chatterjee's Ek Ruka Hua Faisla.

Some of the solo scenes by Pankaj Tripathi, Pallavi Joshi, Mithun Chakraborty and Shweta Basu Prasad are outstanding. Sadly, their impact is diluted by the sidetrack involving Shweta, which seems both forced and unnecessary.

The director should have waited for the finale to present his trump card. 

The film has other drawbacks as well.

The writers have smartly targeted several politicians without mentioning them. Strangely, they also contradict their own theories by claiming they are not authentic. As a result, the film moves from the realm of political theory to social media rumour.

The Tashkent Files forcibly brings in the current political scenario in a manner that is highly irritating.

One-line points are stretched to the point of breaking. Instead, the makers should have reduced the film's running time.

The actors, who are fantastic in some scenes, ham horribly in others.

While there is no scope for songs in the film, the background music is, at times, is jarring.

Along with Shastri, one will find mentions of Homi Bhabha, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, the Emergency period, the cold war and other political events.

The dialogues are hard-hitting at times.

Mithun Chakraborty, Shweta Basu Prasad and Pankaj Tripathi are superb in their parts.

Mandira Bedi and Pallavi Joshi lend good support.

Rajesh Sharma, Prakash Belwade and others are fine.

But Naseeruddin Shah and Vinay Pathak fail to make an impact.

The Tashkent Files is not meant for those looking for escapist fare; however, those looking for content-driven, hard-hitting films will enjoy the movie.

 

Rediff Rating:
Edited by RheaSingh - 5 years ago

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RheaSingh thumbnail
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Posted: 5 years ago
#2
3.5 Review by Lehren

The Tashkent Files Movie Review | Naseeruddin Shah | Mithun Chakraborty | Shweta Basu Prasad

Duration: 03:14 6 hours ago

RheaSingh thumbnail
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Posted: 5 years ago
#3
The film's current score on IMDB is 8.1 at the moment
Ultimate_Shadow thumbnail
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Posted: 5 years ago
#4
the director Vivek Agnihotri creeps me out🤢
but the only good thing he has ever done is by casting Shweta as the lead in the film and with a powerful role.

as far as d movie's concerned its getting bad reviews all over. but good for shweta that her performance is being lauded. hope she gets more work after this. 
ibnbattuta thumbnail
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Posted: 5 years ago
#5
I thought the trailer was interesting but too much of Shweta was there which really put me off. She was insufferable and she seems to have max screen time.
RheaSingh thumbnail
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Posted: 5 years ago
#6

Originally posted by: ibnbattuta

I thought the trailer was interesting but too much of Shweta was there which really put me off. She was insufferable and she seems to have max screen time.


its because she has the leading role out of all characters
Posted: 5 years ago
#7

The Tashkent Files Movie Review

Review by Bollywood Hungama News Network
12 April 2019 13:00 pm IST
1.5
The Tashkent Files Movie Rating

A simple internet search will reveal how so many conspiracy theories exist when it comes to some important episodes of History. The scenario in India is no different and a lot of people strongly believe that what history has taught us is not entirely true. Hollywood has made films and documentaries out of it while India has lagged behind. But now director Vivek Agnihotri tries to put forward an investigative thriller based on Lal Bahadur Shastri's death. The result is THE TASHKENT FILES and it releases in the middle of the exciting election season. So does THE TASHKENT FILES shake the viewer with its content and execution? Or does it fail to impress? Let's analyse.

Movie Review The Tashkent Files

THE TASHKENT FILES is the story of a group of people trying to understand whether there was any foul play in the sudden death of a significant Indian Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri. Raagini Phule (Shweta Basu Prasad) is a rookie political journalist in Delhi working for a newspaper called India Times'. She has been given an ultimatum by her editor (Asif Basra) that she has to submit a scoop in a few days or else she'll be transferred to arts and culture, a beat that Raagini abhors. One day she receives a call from an unknown person (voiced by Vivek Agnihotri) and he asks her to write about the mysterious death of India's second Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri. He had died on January 11, 1966 soon after the Tashkent Agreement was signed following the end of India-Pakistan war. The unknown caller even provides all the evidences and references needed for Raagini to file the story. The article gets published and it goes viral. Shyam Sunder Tripathi, leader of the opposition, uses this opportunity to score brownie points against the ruling government. Realizing that the matter has become too big, PKR Natrajan (Naseeruddin Shah), the minister of home affairs, forms a committee, and its members are to decide if there is indeed any foul play in Shastri's demise. Shyam Sunder Tripathi is made the head of the committee. Other members include Raagini, author and historian Aisha Ali Shah (Pallavi Joshi), social activist Indira Joseph Roy (Mandira Bedi), director of National Archives Omkar Kashyap (Rajesh Sharma), scientist Gangaram Jha (Pankaj Tripathi), ex RAW chief G K Ananthasuresh (Prakash Belawadi), president of the Young Indian Congress Vishwendra Pratap Singh Rana (Prashantt Guptha) and retired Supreme Court judge Justice Kurian Abraham (Vishwa Mohan Badola). A few of them in this committee, like Aisha Ali Shah and Vishwendra Pratap Singh Rana, vehemently deny that Shastri's death was mysterious and stress that he died of natural causes. Raagini and others put a counter view to prove the matter should be investigated. Soon, it comes to light that nobody really cares for Shastri and all are there for some ulterior motives. What happens next forms the rest of the film.

Vivek Agnihotri's story is interesting and the film rests on a brilliant idea. The material is well-researched and it shows. But the character development ought to be a bit stronger. Vivek Agnihotri's screenplay is not very effective. A few committee scenes are well written and thought of. However, at certain places, it becomes a mess as there's too much of information thrown at the audience. Vivek Agnihotri's dialogues are acidic and add to the impact.

Vivek Agnihotri's direction is average. There's no doubt he has handled some scenes deftly. The sequence where Raagini is wiping the cake off her face and talking to the caller is well executed. A few committee scenes are also impactful, especially the finale. On the flipside, the exterior scenes look substandard. This is especially for the slow-motion jogging scenes. Vivek has also shot a crucial sequence in Tashkent and even a layman can make out that a lower quality camera has been used. These are all shaky, hand held shots and one wonders why he didn't opt for at least a cheap tripod!

Vivek Agnihotri & Team talk about film Tashkent files-who killed Shashtri

THE TASHKENT FILES is a 2.24 hours long film and could have been shorter and tighter for a better impact. The opening scenes are decent but again, too much time is wasted in establishing the setting and characters. The fun kicks in once the committee starts discussing about Shastri. The manner of the argument and even some character traits give an instant dj vu of the Hollywood classic 12 ANGRY MEN [1957] and its Hindi remake EK RUKA HUA FAISLA [1986]. Post-interval, things do heat up at some places, especially Gangaram showing his true colours and his extremist views. At the same time, a few developments are quite unconvincing. The sudden killing of an important character is bewildering. Also, Raagini suddenly becoming a villain in the eyes of people and media doesn't seem easy to digest. Shyam Sunder Tripathi's monologue in the pre-climax is sharp but the impact is not much. The climax thankfully comes as a shocker and revives interest. The film tries to appeal to that vast section of people who feel that we have been taught incorrect history and who believe that a particular political party has been in the wrong all along. Although they'll love the information and shocking details provided in the film, it doesn't mean they'll go to cinemas to see it as the treatment is not massy. Moreover, the plethora of information is laid out in such a way that the common moviegoer will get confused and overwhelmed. A few details are needlessly given to the viewers, like the role of Kamraj. Hence, it starts to feel like the makers wanted to also impress audiences with their research and not just tell a good story.

THE TASHKENT FILES has some fine actors but Shweta Basu Prasad rocks the show. She gets a very meaty role and she gives her hundred per cent. In the climax especially, she goes on another level. Mithun Chakraborty is a bit over the top but it works and it is good to see him on screen after a hiatus. Pankaj Tripathi adds to the fun initially and then surprises viewers with his extremist views. He is fine although one might also feel that he just walked out of the sets of last year's hit STREE and shot for this film without making any change in his look or dialogue delivery! Pallavi Joshi is efficient while Mandira Bedi doesn't get much scope. Prakash Belawadi is dependable and also contributes to the film's fun quotient. Prashantt Gupta is strictly okay. Rajesh Sharma and Vishwa Mohan Badola don't get much scope. Asif Basra is fine. Vinay Pathak (Mukhtar) looks too young for the part of a spy who has worked few decades ago. His entry is laughable. Naseerudin Shah is nothing special. Achint Kaur (PKR Natrajan's wife) is completely wasted. Ankur Rathee (Imran) is over the top and showing that he had a past association with Raagini serves no purpose. Yusuf Hussain (P K Bakshi) leaves a mark.

Rohit Sharma's music is entirely forgettable. The promotional song 'Saare Jahan Se Acchha' is missing from the film. 'Sab Chalta Hai' doesn't generate impact. Satya Mannik Afasr's background score is okay and could have been more dramatic. Uday Singh Mohite's cinematography is appropriate in the committee scenes but in the exterior scenes, it is nothing great. Uday Prakash Singh's production design is theatrical. Khatri Irfan's costumes are appealing. Sattyajit Gazmer's editing should have been sharper as the film is too long.

On the whole, THE TASHKENT FILES is laced with an excellent idea and provides some shocking facts related to the sudden demise of Lal Bahadur Shastri. But the film has zero buzz and is riddled with too many loose ends. At the box office, the film is bound to sink without a trace.

Ultimate_Shadow thumbnail
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Posted: 5 years ago
#8

Originally posted by: NeverGiveAF

The Tashkent Files Movie Review

Review by Bollywood Hungama News Network
12 April 2019 13:00 pm IST
1.5
The Tashkent Files Movie Rating

A simple internet search will reveal how so many conspiracy theories exist when it comes to some important episodes of History. The scenario in India is no different and a lot of people strongly believe that what history has taught us is not entirely true. Hollywood has made films and documentaries out of it while India has lagged behind. But now director Vivek Agnihotri tries to put forward an investigative thriller based on Lal Bahadur Shastri's death. The result is THE TASHKENT FILES and it releases in the middle of the exciting election season. So does THE TASHKENT FILES shake the viewer with its content and execution? Or does it fail to impress? Let's analyse.

Movie Review The Tashkent Files

THE TASHKENT FILES is the story of a group of people trying to understand whether there was any foul play in the sudden death of a significant Indian Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri. Raagini Phule (Shweta Basu Prasad) is a rookie political journalist in Delhi working for a newspaper called India Times'. She has been given an ultimatum by her editor (Asif Basra) that she has to submit a scoop in a few days or else she'll be transferred to arts and culture, a beat that Raagini abhors. One day she receives a call from an unknown person (voiced by Vivek Agnihotri) and he asks her to write about the mysterious death of India's second Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri. He had died on January 11, 1966 soon after the Tashkent Agreement was signed following the end of India-Pakistan war. The unknown caller even provides all the evidences and references needed for Raagini to file the story. The article gets published and it goes viral. Shyam Sunder Tripathi, leader of the opposition, uses this opportunity to score brownie points against the ruling government. Realizing that the matter has become too big, PKR Natrajan (Naseeruddin Shah), the minister of home affairs, forms a committee, and its members are to decide if there is indeed any foul play in Shastri's demise. Shyam Sunder Tripathi is made the head of the committee. Other members include Raagini, author and historian Aisha Ali Shah (Pallavi Joshi), social activist Indira Joseph Roy (Mandira Bedi), director of National Archives Omkar Kashyap (Rajesh Sharma), scientist Gangaram Jha (Pankaj Tripathi), ex RAW chief G K Ananthasuresh (Prakash Belawadi), president of the Young Indian Congress Vishwendra Pratap Singh Rana (Prashantt Guptha) and retired Supreme Court judge Justice Kurian Abraham (Vishwa Mohan Badola). A few of them in this committee, like Aisha Ali Shah and Vishwendra Pratap Singh Rana, vehemently deny that Shastri's death was mysterious and stress that he died of natural causes. Raagini and others put a counter view to prove the matter should be investigated. Soon, it comes to light that nobody really cares for Shastri and all are there for some ulterior motives. What happens next forms the rest of the film.

Vivek Agnihotri's story is interesting and the film rests on a brilliant idea. The material is well-researched and it shows. But the character development ought to be a bit stronger. Vivek Agnihotri's screenplay is not very effective. A few committee scenes are well written and thought of. However, at certain places, it becomes a mess as there's too much of information thrown at the audience. Vivek Agnihotri's dialogues are acidic and add to the impact.

Vivek Agnihotri's direction is average. There's no doubt he has handled some scenes deftly. The sequence where Raagini is wiping the cake off her face and talking to the caller is well executed. A few committee scenes are also impactful, especially the finale. On the flipside, the exterior scenes look substandard. This is especially for the slow-motion jogging scenes. Vivek has also shot a crucial sequence in Tashkent and even a layman can make out that a lower quality camera has been used. These are all shaky, hand held shots and one wonders why he didn't opt for at least a cheap tripod!

Vivek Agnihotri & Team talk about film Tashkent files-who killed Shashtri

THE TASHKENT FILES is a 2.24 hours long film and could have been shorter and tighter for a better impact. The opening scenes are decent but again, too much time is wasted in establishing the setting and characters. The fun kicks in once the committee starts discussing about Shastri. The manner of the argument and even some character traits give an instant dj vu of the Hollywood classic 12 ANGRY MEN [1957] and its Hindi remake EK RUKA HUA FAISLA [1986]. Post-interval, things do heat up at some places, especially Gangaram showing his true colours and his extremist views. At the same time, a few developments are quite unconvincing. The sudden killing of an important character is bewildering. Also, Raagini suddenly becoming a villain in the eyes of people and media doesn't seem easy to digest. Shyam Sunder Tripathi's monologue in the pre-climax is sharp but the impact is not much. The climax thankfully comes as a shocker and revives interest. The film tries to appeal to that vast section of people who feel that we have been taught incorrect history and who believe that a particular political party has been in the wrong all along. Although they'll love the information and shocking details provided in the film, it doesn't mean they'll go to cinemas to see it as the treatment is not massy. Moreover, the plethora of information is laid out in such a way that the common moviegoer will get confused and overwhelmed. A few details are needlessly given to the viewers, like the role of Kamraj. Hence, it starts to feel like the makers wanted to also impress audiences with their research and not just tell a good story.

THE TASHKENT FILES has some fine actors but Shweta Basu Prasad rocks the show. She gets a very meaty role and she gives her hundred per cent. In the climax especially, she goes on another level. Mithun Chakraborty is a bit over the top but it works and it is good to see him on screen after a hiatus. Pankaj Tripathi adds to the fun initially and then surprises viewers with his extremist views. He is fine although one might also feel that he just walked out of the sets of last year's hit STREE and shot for this film without making any change in his look or dialogue delivery! Pallavi Joshi is efficient while Mandira Bedi doesn't get much scope. Prakash Belawadi is dependable and also contributes to the film's fun quotient. Prashantt Gupta is strictly okay. Rajesh Sharma and Vishwa Mohan Badola don't get much scope. Asif Basra is fine. Vinay Pathak (Mukhtar) looks too young for the part of a spy who has worked few decades ago. His entry is laughable. Naseerudin Shah is nothing special. Achint Kaur (PKR Natrajan's wife) is completely wasted. Ankur Rathee (Imran) is over the top and showing that he had a past association with Raagini serves no purpose. Yusuf Hussain (P K Bakshi) leaves a mark.

Rohit Sharma's music is entirely forgettable. The promotional song 'Saare Jahan Se Acchha' is missing from the film. 'Sab Chalta Hai' doesn't generate impact. Satya Mannik Afasr's background score is okay and could have been more dramatic. Uday Singh Mohite's cinematography is appropriate in the committee scenes but in the exterior scenes, it is nothing great. Uday Prakash Singh's production design is theatrical. Khatri Irfan's costumes are appealing. Sattyajit Gazmer's editing should have been sharper as the film is too long.

On the whole, THE TASHKENT FILES is laced with an excellent idea and provides some shocking facts related to the sudden demise of Lal Bahadur Shastri. But the film has zero buzz and is riddled with too many loose ends. At the box office, the film is bound to sink without a trace.


good 😃

that's what i was talking abt
NimbuMirchi thumbnail
Posted: 5 years ago
#9


If movie actually focuses on Lal bahadur Shastri's mysterious death, then it won't get support of pseudo leftist critics. Coz Shastri's death theories puts a question mark on Indira too. And if congress is shown in wrong side, critics will go out of their way to trash it. 



ibnbattuta thumbnail
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Posted: 5 years ago
#10
Sure the concept is good. An Indian pm died under very mysterious circumstances and there was zero investigation. Only so much Shweta...she's too jarring. 
But if the movie's good.