A week into 2013 and the film industries are waking up to life after the holidays. Among the first few releases of this year, the promos that actually caught my eye was Aditya Datt's "Table No.21". Though devoid of superstars, the presence of Paresh Rawal & Rajeev Khandelwal surely raises the hopes of something exciting. So will this be the first hit of the year???
Vivaan (Rajeev Khandelwal) & his wife, Siya (Tena Desae) is an ordinary middle class family who cant believe their luck when they win an all expenses paid trip to the beautiful islands of Fiji. Incidentally, their wedding anniversary which happened to coincide with their trip was celebrated in a manner they would have least expected. They receive an invitation from Mr. Khan (Paresh Rawal) the owner of Suva, one of the finest resorts of Fiji to spent their special day there. Things get even better when Mr. Khan offers the couple a staggering 21 crores to be part of his internet gaming show "Table 21". The rules basically involved telling the truth at all costs followed by performing a task for each of the 8 questions asked. But what began as a light hearted game eventually turns out more than what they had bargained for.
Aditya Datt has come up with an arresting thriller which gets better with each passing sequence culminating in a thrilling climax which leaves a lump in your throat. The stark reality portrayed gives you a fleeting glimpse of the glum realities of many such incidents in real life and the credit for this goes to the impressive scripting by Shantanu Ray & Shreeshak Anand. If at all, I have to name a flaw then it has to be the slow pacing in the first half which doesnt pack as much a punch as expected even though the script had the substance.
I believe it's immaterial to harp as to how brilliant an actor Paresh Rawal is as he always delivers a cracking performance whenever he is given a well etched character. Call it irony or destiny, but after playing host to the game show "Sach Ka Saamne" in the silver screen; Rajeev Khandewal now dons the role of the participant with conviction who has no option but say the truth to win the bounty. As for Tena Desae, she seemed fine though not totally at ease in some sequences.
Verdict: Undoubtedly one of the best thrillers in recent times primarily coz of the climax which draw parallels with the stark reality in our every day life. I believe it has the makings of a hit & suggest that you guys should check it out!!!