Spending a lazy night in bed or planning a fun, thrilling movie session with your squad or significant other? This intelligently curated murder mystery on Zee5 is the perfect bingewatch you didn’t know you needed!
Rating – 3.5 / 5 ⭐⭐⭐½
When people around me comment on the dropping standards and intellect level of our Bollywood films, although I must agree to a certain extent, I always give them examples of some mind-boggling digital releases that’s pretty much been the reason we’ve been able to survive these lockdowns. With theatres remaining closed for the most part and big-budget releases being shelved off, OTT films & web series are the new normal! And Manoj Bajpayee’s Silence was…well, crème de la crème.
One of our much-needed all-engrossing whodunnit murder mysteries, Silence follows ACP Avinash Verma (Manoj Bajpayee) and his overly competent and well-spoken team including Prachi Desai and Vaquar Sheikh, as they dive right in to investigate the murder of Pooja Choudhary (Barkha Singh), daughter of Justice Choudhary (Shishit Sharma), whose body was found at an isolated hilltop. Almost everyone seems to be a suspect and as the storyline unfolds, everyone’s deep dark secrets begin to pour out, leaving you oh-so-hooked and desperate to find out the truth behind this unexpected homicide.
“Insaaf sirf gunegaar ko saza dilaana nahi hota, begunaah ko saza se bachana bhi insaaf ka ek pehloon hai”– ACP Avinash Verma
Silence can be best described as a captivating script with an intelligent execution. Director Aban Bharucha Deohans pretty much got all the ingredients right & left no loopholes as far as the plot was concerned. One of the glaring flaws I noticed with this one was how unrealistically the police life had been displayed – I mean, Manoj Bajpai & his entire team speaking English fluently, working at a super posh police area & effortlessly retrieving all the evidence needed was all just a bit much to digest, which automatically makes the audience less serious about the film and all that’s to come. Sometimes, minor detailing can make all the difference – realistic elements reflecting society as we know it becomes quite a game-changer in most movies these days as it makes the audience relate to the film at a much deeper level.
Well, Manoj Bajpayee’s acting skills continue to remain unquestionable (to say the least). He strives to make every role his own and inevitably mixes in his chilled out, calm, composed personality into the film’s character. In Silence, I particularly admired the scene where he’s coming out of the commissioner’s office after being given the murder case & is surrounded by the press asking who the killer is. His response “pata nahi…dhoond lenge” in the most laidback, stressfree tone. Bajpayee pretty much carried this 136-minute directorial on his shoulders, so much so that scenes without him were automatically subpar.
I was also impressed with filmmaker Deohans’ excellent choice of supporting cast – it allowed for a strong foundation for a subtle, suspenseful thriller to be built on. Everyone seemed to be in full form, especially Arjun Mathur, Sahil Vaid and the newbee Garima Yagnik! But all eyes on Prachi Desai – uff, you have been missed! Thank you for blessing us with your presence on screen and bringing that much-needed fresh breath of air amidst all the seriousness & soberity.
My biggest problem, however, wasn’t with the film but the film’s title… “Silence…Can you hear it?” unfortunately didn’t match the movie’s theme, screenplay or any recurring motifs. Although the title stems from a comatosed character playing an important part in solving the case, the meat of this spectacle revolves around the victim’s personal drama and a cascade of unforeseen consequences stemming from the murder itself – so the director’s decision with the title is something I’m not quite convinced with.
All in all, Silence was one of those whodunnits that allows you to place your bets on the killer right from the beginning (I lost lol). Despite certain shortcomings, this Manoj Bajpayee starrer keeps you locked & engaged throughout and poses as the perfect “sit back & relax” watch we need during terrifying pandemic. If I were you, I’d get the popcorn ready right away!
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