Neeyat Review | A Lousy Thriller With a Familiar Trajectory and Predictable Punches

The aspiration of the Anu Menon thriller Neeyat is to give a what-if interpretation to the whole Vijay Mallya story. But the character detailing and the progression of events are so plastic that you absolutely feel nothing when the film acts like it has revealed some suspense that you didn’t see coming. With Kausar Munir’s over-dramatic dialogues only making things worse, this wannabe Knives Out feels too lame and unappealing.

Ashish Kumar is this wealthy, flamboyant Indian industrialist who is now settled in Britain as he is facing major financial charges against him in India. The movie Neeyat is about the grand birthday party his family and friends organized for him at his castle. But Ashish dies in an accident during the party, and CBI officer Mira Rao, who was there at that party, believes that it was a murder. We see how she investigates that case and finds the killer in Neeyat.

By introducing characters sequentially with their names written in big, bold fonts, Anu Menon tries to make the movie look a bit funky. But the writing lacked a nuanced representation from that point itself. How Ashish Kumar reacts to a news report that describes his history makes you feel a bit odd about the movie. And every character in the film looks more like an insensitive caricature than people with hidden intentions. And the most underwhelming thing was the predictability. We have seen many films that have used this format, and this one feels like the least impressive one in terms of the effort they have taken to make it less predictable.

When it comes to filmmaking, luxury is definitely evident in every frame. But the techniques used don’t have any major purpose in manipulating the viewer. When Mira interrogates each guest in the film’s second half, Anu Menon opts for this split-screen representation. I couldn’t figure out whether she was trying to give any specific reason for both vertical and horizontal splits of the screen. In one scene featuring Vidya Balan and Prajakta Koli, we can see the Split Diopter shot being used, but the purpose of that shot was kind of unnecessary as Prajakata’s character was the only one that really demanded focus at that point. They have tried all these tricks in the making, which sadly looks more like a gimmick than something that enhances the drama quotient.

Vidya Balan’s character Mira Rao is described as this adamant robot by Ashish Kumar, and Vidya pulls off the nerdy energy of that character convincingly. In terms of screen time and scope to perform, Ram Kapoor benefited most from this film, and the man managed to reduce the cheesiness of the poorly written lines. Rahul Bose and Shahana Goswami are pretty much borderline caricatures who sometimes unintentionally become the comic relief. Neeraj Kabi tries his best, but even he fumbles when the character behaves way too dramatically. Amrita Puri’s Kay Patel is comically eccentric. Shashank Arora and Prajakta Koli are wasted in underwritten characters. Danesh Razvi can’t really give an element of surprise to his character through the performance.

The climax that reveals the identity of a major character and presents us with a very utopian future possibility feels so loud and lazy. I don’t know whether it was budget constraints or something, but there are moments in the film, like the car accident of Tanveer, that almost looked like a hasty censor cut. Overall, Neeyat feels like a quickly assembled thriller that needed much more refining.

Final Thoughts

Overall, Neeyat feels like a quickly assembled thriller that needed much more refining.


Green: Recommended Content

Orange: The In-Between Ones

Red: Not Recommended


By Aswin Bharadwaj

Founder and editor of Lensmen Reviews.