Talaash belongs to the genre of cinema noir of which there are few examples in recent times. This film is a good attempt at revisiting suspense flicks that were a huge craze in the 50-60s. To bring Gen-Now up to speed, back then movies like CID, Mera Saya, Woh Kaun Thi weaved magic on celluloid for patrons back then. But, make no mistake here. Though, Talaash has the mystique of the cinema Raj Khosla; it is modern in its approach and the setting is contemporary.
The plot revolves around a bizarre high profile death of a movie star Armaan Kapoor (Vivaan Bhatena). Aamir Khan (Surjan Singh Shekhawat) is the cop in charge of the case. The clues lead him to Mumbai’s red-light area where he jostles between pimps and prostitutes looking for answers.
It’s also revealed that Surjan is married to Roshni (Rani Mukerji). But he is like a man possessed on the job because of a sensitive incident in his life.
In a bid to bury his head in the sand and escape his personal demons, he directs all his energies into his khaki uniform.
Coming to the Armaan Kapoor case, vital clues keep taking him to a working girl called Rosie (Kareena Kapoor). Between piecing the mystery together, the cop and the call-girl, develop a relationship that goes slightly beyond the regular.
In the performance department, Aamir Khan should pat himself on his back for a superlative act; he’s a powerhouse, flawless from frame one to 10. This superstar-actor should also be lauded for raising the bar in his choice of films and roles, unlike many of his contemporaries who neither have the inclination nor the capacity to move away from the ‘mould’ they have been typecast in.
Rani Mukerji is one of the finest actresses of this generation. In Talaash she is effortless in her part of a wife in a strife ridden marriage and a mother who has faced a tragedy. Kareena Kapoor looks lovely and sits pretty in her hooker act, going from coy to brazen like a pro.
Nawazuddin Siddiqui (Taimur) has an interesting role as a street-savvy chai-serving sidekick in the flesh bazaar. Again, this is one actor, whose potential Bollywood is discovering slowly but surely.
Ram Sampath’s music haunts—especially Muskaanein jhooti hai and Jiya lage na .
Farhan Akhtar’s dialogue has fire. But the story written by Zoya Akhtar and Reema Kagti oscillates between real and implausible; making it hard for the screenplay to bridge the gap, especially in some key portions in the second half. At time the pace also numbs you making you shift in your seat. But if you average it out, Talaash is well-worth the price of a ticket.
Surjan Singh Shekhawat who has been entrusted the task of solving a high-profile murder case of a film star is up against a dead-end. Will he, won’t he be able to take the case to a natural conclusion?
You may not like Talaash, if mystery and intrigue set at a languid pace is not what you look out for in your matinee outing.