Gaslight movie review: Chitrangada Singh shows Sara Ali Khan how to do a psychological thriller

Chitrangada Singh and Sara Ali Khan in Gaslight

Pawan Kriplani cannot stage ‘ambient gaslighting’ in the way or to the extent that he did in his 2016 blockbuster ‘Phobia’.

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  • Sara Ali Khan has a long way to go before she can land a writer-supported role like ‘Gaslight’.
  • Chitrangada Singh is the most suitable actress when it comes to the psychological thriller genre.
  • A smart casting choice by Vikrant Massey but his sudden transformation can be spotted from miles away.

Sara Ali Khan recently admitted that she was terrible in Imtiaz Ali Love Aaj Kal (2020) and she has a long way to go before graduating as a good actress. His latest film, Pawan Kriplani’s psychological thriller gas lightA step up maybe, a small one at that, but his rehearsed performance certainly doesn’t equal his acute, organic self-awareness.

She plays Misha, a wheelchair-bound young woman who returns to her ancestral mansion with the hope of reuniting with her long-lost father. However, upon her return, she finds him suspiciously missing. He feels that his step mother Rukmani (Chitrangada Singh) has killed him for the sake of inheritance. Rukmani and the palace staff push Meesha into believing that her father is on duty, incommunicado but will return soon.

As one might guess, this is clearly a writer-assisted role for Sarah, with a lot going for me. But when she’s in a wheelchair (one can imagine her getting up and walking anytime), when she’s scared (her scariest stunt is falling down the stairs in a wheelchair), she brings out different shades of her character. fails to mold firmly. But then there has to be a body double), when she’s scared (cliches galore), when she’s drowning (her mouth is too sharp to be under water) or when she’s missing her father. happens (we don’t remember him at all). The only shred of truth she is able to translate on screen is when she reaches the peak of being gaslit through a reaction that is a mix of laughter and shock. Please invoke more of that Sarah!

Chitrangada Singh, in fact, turns out to be a more suitable actress for this genre. She plays the doting but distant stepmother, the loyal but faltering wife, the classy yet entitled queen, and the righteous but vulnerable woman so much that one wishes she’d play the lead of the film. She is just as gorgeous and effective in the classic swimming pool sequence, where blood overpowers water, as she is with restrained and convoluted dialogue, for example when she says that her husband has so many toys. She can’t take care of them.

Vikrant Massey as Kapil, the keeper of the palace, is the good-natured, helpful, loyal man before breaking into that image. It’s a smart casting choice but you can spot her ‘sudden’ metamorphosis from miles away. However, his anger remains refreshingly righteous and relevant. Akshay Oberoi as Misha’s cousin is just having fun while Rahul Dev as ACP Ashok has the fleeting moments that he has. Shishir Sharma is yet another value addition to the ensemble cast as he adds little touches to the layered dialogues, like when Misha wakes up after falling down the stairs, she says dramatically, “Welcome to the world of the living.” Is”.

By authors Pawan Kriplani and Neha Sharma, these are small flourishes that complement the larger gist gas light, The title of the film is apt not only because Rukmani and the palace staff are attempting to gaslight Misha, but also because there are other actors who get gaslighted. There’s also a track about how Gen-Z and Boomers react to gaslighting: Rukmani actually starts hallucinating (could be her drug) while Misha uses her therapist’s guide to face her fears. obeys. Similarly, there is a parallel track to what one makes of the handouts: whether one should be grateful or vengeful.

But Kriplani, who hopelessly drifted into the mainstream ghost police Last year, ‘Parivesh Gaslighting’ failed to stage in the way or to the extent that his breakthrough film Fear Back in 2016.

In the psychological thriller, where Radhika Apte plays a woman who has agoraphobia, the fear of being in public places, Kriplani has made excellent use of camera, sound, production design and editing. He made us feel through these devices that we were being enthralled by the entire script. But there’s no such technical wizardry gas light, As in the score by Gaurav Chatterjee, production design by Apoorva Bhagat and Ashish Naik (in addition to the choice and design of the perennial haunting film). Stepwell), or Avinash Pawar’s makeup, can’t drum up the same tension or urgency.

It is then left to Chitrangada Singh to make us feel as if we are in her head – where there is doubt, fear, hope, love, entitlement and a moral compass all at the same time. Gaslighting is an integral part of a psychological thriller, but how can one question its reality when the lead actor himself cannot ground the thriller in the sense of reality? I hope Sara continues to see reality until it reaches a point where it makes us stop questioning it.

gas light Streaming on Disney+ Hotstar.

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