Vishal Bharadwaj's 'Khufiya' - A Weekend Matinee You Won't Regret

A slow burner espionage drama with the early 2000's as its backdrop; Vishal Bharadwaj's Khufiya premiered directly on Netflix this weekend and despite its sluggish pace, kept me in an engaging mode right till the end. It's a tad long at near two hours forty minutes but still worth the time invested. I vouch!! 

The plot ain't that complicated: RAW officer KM (Tabu) is assigned the task of spying on a suspected fellow agent (Ali Fazal) and his family, who has evidently sold his soul to the CIA. But, has he really? There is also a parallel track of a Bangladeshi minister, who is conspiring something sinister. KM lays her trust on a new recruit Heena (Azmeri Haque Badhon) but can she pull off the seemingly impossible task??!!! 

Don't expect a high octane actioner or a screen scorcher as Khufiya takes its own time to build its core characters, involve you in the proceedings and then moves to its climax...which may make it a tedious watch for the impatient but then a Baby (2015) or Pathaan (2023), it ain't or expected to be!! 

Surprisingly, the espionage movie belongs to its ladies who truly impress big time. Tabu, the superlative actor that she is, leaves a mark though her role isn't entirely meaty. Wamiqa Gabbi as Charu, Ali Fazal's wifey delivers a knockout act especially in the film's second half. Bangladeshi star Azmeri Haque Badhon is outstanding in her complex role. Here's an actor to watch out for in future and hope Bollywood gives her more roles!! 

Overall, Khufiya has the trademark Vishal Bharadwaj touch though I personally feel the director gives his best when adapting Shakespeare. Who can forget Maqbool (2003), Omkara (2006) and of course Haider (2014), my personal favorite of the trio. Khufiya isn't as great as them but still makes the cut to a watch. Make it your weekend matinee!! 

Ratings on some key aspects* : 

1. Acting : 4/5 

2. Direction : 3.5/5

3. Music : 3/5 

4. Story, Screenplay and Dialogue : 3.5/5

5. Cinematography : 3/5

6. Editing : 2.5/5 

7. Costume Design : 3.5/5

8. Special Effects and VFX : NA

9. Action : NA

10. Production Quality : 3.5/5 

#SNRating for #Khufiya : 3 & 1/2 stars out of 5. 

- Sumeet Nadkarni 

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About Sumeet Nadkarni: Sumeet Nadkarni is a Chartered Accountant by profession and a self-styled film critic by passion. He reviews Bollywood movies and OTT releases on his popular personal blog #SNRatings. His film-related articles have appeared in leading publications in India. With a keen eye for cinematic detail and a knack for insightful critiques, Sumeet brings a unique perspective to the world of Indian cinema. Follow him for the latest Bollywood insights and unbiased film reviews. #FilmCritique #BollywoodReviewer

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