Genre: Action, Crime, Drama, Thriller
Release Date: 17th February, 2023
Cast: Jagdish Rajpurohit, Salim Siddiqui, Anand Vikas Potdekhe, Anil Kapoor, Aditya Roy Kapur
Writer: David Farr
Director: Priyanka Ghose, Rukh Nabeel, Sandeep Modi
Producer/s: Banijay Asia
The Night Manager Part 1 Review : Star Rating:
Cast: Aditya Roy Kapur, Anil Kapoor, Sobhita Dhulipala, Tillotama Shome, Saswata Chatterjee, and ensemble.
Creator: Sandeep Modi
Director: Sandeep Modi, Priyanka Ghosh & Rukh Nabeel.
Streaming On: disney+ Hotstar.
Language: Hindi (with subtitles)
Runtime: 4 Episodes Around 60 Minutes Each.
The Night Manager Part 1 Review : What’s It About:
An ex-defense officer Shaan Sengupta now works as a night manager in a five-star hotel in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Life brings another operation to him as a teenage girl asks for his help to save her. The episode leads to him getting his hands on a big syndicate. A turn of events triggers Shan to get back to being an undercover officer as he now aims to take down the bad guy.
The Night Manager Part 1 Review : What Works:
It is all in how the filmmakers introduce their characters when it comes to projects about some secret agent who does a job that is far away from the line of work he belongs to and gradually comes back to his day job, that is to fight the bad men. It is a trajectory used since the days of yore and if anyone now attempts it, there has to be something fresh to make it work. The Night Manager, an adaptation of the British show starring Tom Hiddleston in the lead, is clever when it comes to how it uses an entire first volume of a season as an introduction to what’s to come.
Now, the biggest question that lurks around the show is whether it is different from its original or not. To answer your question, while it takes the blueprint of the British show, Shridhar Raghavan’s (Pathaan) adaptation with Sandeep Modi’s help manages to give it a new vibe. The treatment and chronology changes in the Indian version and that helps in building a new world. This is Modi’s second adaptation in the same month after Netflix’s Class, and one can see his art of borrowing things and making them his own skillfully.
The Night Manager is smart at the very point it decides to reveal a lot in the first episode but also keeps much more under wraps. At the core of it, the show is a thrilling espionage that is about hunting down a white-collared baddie who deals illegal arms to war-torn countries. The writers take a lot of efforts to blend this storyline into the soil in which the show is set in. The writing connects this fictional story to the unfortunate Rohingya genocide that in turn led to unrest in Bangladesh. It takes an effort to explain to the viewers what the situation was like. While no character has any connection with the crisis directly, it does serve as a good backdrop for a show.
The part 1 is more of an introduction that tells you about this setup. These are an interesting set of characters and the teams do a great job at casting them. A man with no family or anyone to fall back on is out there to take down a syndicate, the big villain is bad but not visibly evil, he is borderline clueless about what’s happening around him because he lives in the bubble that he rules. An R&AW agent who is pregnant but isn’t stopping her from joining the operation. There are enough light moments too to give the viewer a breather. The best one is when a dog is named Loki and Shaan (Aditya) says, “Mein Loki jitna cute to nahi hoon, par tumhara friend ban sakta hoon”, or when Sobhita is reading the book The Night Manager on the poolside. I see you, Sandeep!
The Night Manager Part 1 Review : Star Performance:
Aditya Roy Kapur has finally managed to find a project that is making him experiment. This is a great casting choice because Aditya’s charm does work in the favour of the narrative in more ways than one. There is a visible mystery in how the character is built and Kapur with his performance keeps it alive.
Anil Kapoor joins him as Shailly aka Shailendra Rangta and they together make an interesting antagonist–protagonist pair. Kapoor, who sets out to play an out an out bad men for the first time doesn’t overdo it at all. Rather the writing makes him underplay the part. Whatever evil you see of him in the first part of season one is on two phone calls. There is nothing that creates a visible villain out of him once he is in the frame. An interesting way to build an idea and play with it. Hope they manage to keep using it well.
Can we take a moment and celebrate a powerhouse of talent called Tillotama Shome? The actor does a role way different than her filmography and aces every single bit of it. Most of the humour comes from her but at no point she allows you to take her any less seriously. She plays a pregnant woman on the job but thankfully that is never made the central point of discussion about her character. Look carefully when she is in Srilanka for an undercover on-budget operation. There are sunburns on her face, small detail but so much to add to the finesse.
Sobhita Dhulipala has an interesting part at hand that is just a tease in the part one and promises to have much more in the second part. She wears all the wrong clothes on the wrong occasions and that is possibly being used as a trait for her part if I am not reading too much between the lines. Wish the four episodes revealed a bit more about her. She borderline looks like the eye candy and nothing more to this world right now.
Saswata Chatterjee plays a gay character that is interesting but there is a whole lot of stereotyping and one cannot ignore it. While he becomes the bridge between the real world and his bubble for Kapoor, there should have been more research involved in creating him.
The Night Manager Part 1 Review : What Doesn’t Work:
That the part one chooses to keep a lot stored for the second. Four episodes are used as an introduction and a tease of what’s to come. The fact that this is the first season and a show that is yet to build a fan base for itself. It is a risky decision and one that deserves a crackling part two if you are making the audience wait.
While Anil and Sobhita are great actors respectively, together their dynamic doesn’t blend in organically as it should. Also, what is the
The Night Manager Review : Last Words:
The Night Manager is a faithful remake that is interesting and well-adapted. There is much more to it than just being an Indian version to a British show but the release pattern might become a problem.
For more recommendations, read our Cinema Marte Dum Tak Review here.
Must Read: Class Review: Darkness Overpowers This Obnoxious World As Goodness Exits From The Back Door; Much More Than Just An Adaptation
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