Movie Review of Dhokha Round D Corner
Form: R Madhavan, Aparshakti Khurana, Khushalii Kumar, Darshan Kumaar and others
Director: Kookie Gulati
Duration: 1 hour 51 minutes
Where to watch: Theatres
Rating: 2/5 stars
A housewife with a delusional disorder, a husband accused of cheating, a police officer and a terrorist become embroiled in a tense hostage situation – the idea sounds great on paper, but fails miserably on the execution level in Kookie Gulati’s latest suspense thriller Dhokha Round D Corner.
Starting from the beginning, the film depicts the troubled married life between Yatharth Sinha, played by R Madhavan, and Sanchi Sinha, drafted by Khushalii Kumar who is seen making her Bollywood debut. Aparshakti Khurana enters as Haq Gul, a terrorist who takes Sanchi hostage while alone in their house and asks to fulfill his demands. ACP Malik, Darshan Kumaar as a no-nonsense cop, and his armed police take over the entire Spring Sunshine apartment complex to get hold of Gul.
Dhokha Round D Corner makes excellent use of the Rashomon effect, showing two conflicting descriptions of how multiple events unfold in the story. Among the four main characters, the director knows how to keep the public’s curiosity in whom they can rely. In doing so, however, the film loses its own perspective.
Flawed with illogical plot points and weak writing, the thriller arouses no interest or sympathy for Yatharth and Sanchi, ACP Malik or terrorist Gul. The multiple twists and turns don’t occur organically and seem to be forced into the story for shock value.
What works for the film, though, is that the writer and director Kookie Gulati, who has previously worked on films like Vivek Oberoi starrer Prince and Abhishek Bachchan’s The Big Bull, wastes no time building the plot and immediately takes the audience to the dramatic hostage-taking within the first ten minutes. The short running time of less than two hours is very suitable for this hostage thriller.
Darshan Kumaar and Aparshakti Khurana do their best to save Dhokha with their heartfelt and sustained performances, especially the latter who has worked hard on his character’s Kashmiri dialect, but if the writing is weak, how much can the actors take the burden of the then wear a movie? their shoulders! Khushalii Kumar adds the glamor factor in the film as the ideal femme fatale. Surprisingly, however, R Madhavan, who was exceptional in his latest outing Rocketry: The Nambi Effect, is so common here that it seems like the actor was sleepwalking the entire movie.
Dhokha Round D Corner ends with a heartbreak titled Mahi Mera Dil and within seconds the film’s tone changes with the remake of the retro dance track Mere Dil Gaaye Ja (Zooby Zooby), leaving audiences wondering what to make of this film or just accept that it was indeed a ‘Dhokha’.