The Tashkent Files REVIEW: Vivek Agnihotri's film is tiresome and OTT replay of Shastri's mysterious death

Vivek Agnihotri's The Tashkent Files tries too hard to unearth Lal Bahadur Shastri's mysterious death using conjectures as crutches. Does it manage to leave an impression? Read Full REVIEW.
 The Tashkent Files REVIEW: Vivek Agnihotri's film is tiresome and OTT replay of Shastri's mysterious death The Tashkent Files REVIEW: Vivek Agnihotri's film is tiresome and OTT replay of Shastri's mysterious death
  • 2
  • facebook
  • twitter
  • Share on whatsapp

Movie Name: The Tashkent Files

Director: Vivek Agnihotri

Cast: Shweta Prasad Basu, Naseeruddin Shah, Pallavi Joshi, Pankaj Tripathi, Mithun Chakraborty and Vinay Pathak

Ratings: 1.5/5

"Anyone who rises from the ground (meethi) is made to choke," reiterated Vivek Agnihotri's film titled The Tashkent Files several times in an over two hours long movie.  The movie produced by Agnihotri and Pallavi Joshi essentially unearths the "reality" behind the mysterious death of India's second Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri, who passed away a few hours after India signed the Tashkent treaty with Pakistan to resolve the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965. 

Amid several theories, the movie through the prism of Ragini Phule (Shweta Prasad Basu) tries to etch many narratives based on some major documented facts, confidential accounts and archived video interviews of journalists and politicians from the past. Shastri's family members and their narrative was also a part of the screenplay which failed horribly by the end, making it a tiresome watch. Even if we ignore the sloppy screenplay and the timing of the movie driven by a political agenda to swing votes to a certain party, Agnihotri fails to establish or provide anything more than what available on Shastri's death on social media. 

The dramatic undertone to the movie is a total put off while the background music which is meant to evoke a few tears, only makes your eyes roll in frustration. While you would expect the movie to pick up in the second half, the OTT expressions and fictionalisation makes you yawn more than nationalism. Though the movie takes a stand on "nationalism" and being called "anti-national", the context in which it was shown seems highly prejudiced. The entire plot is to prove the greatness of Shastri, which we have no doubts about, whilst defaming Indian National Congress, indirectly accusing them of the entire conspiracy is too on the face to be ignored. 

Despite having actors like Naseeruddin Shah, Pallavi Joshi, Pankaj Tripathi, Mithun Chakraborty and Vinay Pathak in pivotal roles, it looks like a waste of opportunity. Basu as Ragini is too over dramatic in parts making me cringe in bits, while Mithun as Shyam Tripathi is convincing as the corrupt politician. Pankaj Tripathi shines in the small role he has and proves again why he is a gem and a boon for Indian cinema. Naseeruddin's talent is wasted in a hit and miss kind of an appearance. 

Though the movie does convince of foul play in Shastri's death, it is not the history chapter you want to reopen, at least not via an Agnihotri movie! Better visit an archive and research for yourself! 

Comments

What is naseeruddin shah doing in a vivek agnihotri propaganda movie?

Loved the movie....eye opening.

Add new comment