TALVAR is a movie on the Aarushi Talwar murder case on which another movie, RAHASYA, was already made and released in January of this year. RAHASYA was a dud.
So how different is TALVAR? This one by Meghana Gulzar is more realistic. She replicates television and news clippings from across various newspapers but offers no new insight into the double murder or motive. What we see on screen is what we already know except for some dramatized investigation back-scenes which is what makes the film actually engrossing and enlightening.
From the time the police botch-up the murder scene, contaminating the crime scene, to the time the CBI takes over and then another CBI team re-investigating the investigation, this makes for interesting viewing.
Of special interest to me was the two CBI teams that probed the murder coming face-to-face towards the end in a closed room to conclude their findings. To the one watching, it is clear as to where the teams are headed and what their motives are. It leaves you with a sense of disbelief that the case was botched up in a manner it was, the way it is dramatized on screen.
Moreover, when the CBI offers a closure to the investigation since there was no conclusive evidence, the father asks for the reopening of the case because he is not satisfied with the investigation as the culprit had not been found.
The question to ask is this. If he, the father, was the murderer, why would he not be happy and just walk away since the court never found him or his wife guilty? That is one question that will forever haunt the nation.
On the acting front Irfan Khan as the investigating officer heading the inquiry for the CBI lends that touch of finesse to make the movie what it is. Take away his character and methinks the film would fall flat. The actor who plays his partner is a revelation, while Neeraj Kabi as Rajesh Talwar portrays that haunting face which were used to watching on the news to a nicety. Even his body language brings a sense of deja vu.
TALVAR is not breakthrough cinema. Neither is it exciting or informative. In fact, it leaves a bad taste in the mouth as most in India have seen ad nauseam
on national television the 'live' findings of the double murder on a daily basis when the murder rocked the nation in 2008. Same is happening now in the Sheena Bora murder case.
I feel the industry could have spared Aarushi and her parents this embarrassment.