The Tashkent File’s Story: A young, deterministic and ambitious journalist Raagini (Shweta Basu Prasad) receives an unknown tip about a scoop for giving rise to his career at her low point. The scoop is about India’s ex-Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri’s mysterious death in Tashkent. She researched everything about the Shastri’s death and publishes a story in the newspaper, in results, it leads to an official committee being set up by the government to investigate the 53-year-old case about Lal Bahadur Shastri’s anonymous death.
The Tashkent Files Review: Based on one of the most mysterious and controversial stories of India’s history, The Tashkent Files recreate a hard-hitting and volatile political drama. The movie also highlights the history’s facts about politics of that time. The story of the movie is plotted in modern times, as a journalist, Raagini takes a deep dive into investigating Lal Bahadur Shastri’s mysterious death from 1966 in Tashkent. While the pursuit of truth after half-a-century is not clear, the young journalist Ragini is played by Shweta Basu Prasad, chases the scoop because she’s overly ambitious and want to hike her career in the world of social media and any sensationalist or controversial topic, will do that. So she and a whole group of politicians, social workers, historians, intellectuals and civil servants, join a committee that has the work of uncovering and reinvestigating the truth.
It’s a setup borrowed from 12 Angry Men, and the lack of novelty doesn’t help the proceedings at all.
Director and writer Vivek Agnihotri of The Tashkent Files explores a lot of political stories, facts, Figures and rumors throughout the movie. As the young journalist comes face to face with the history of Shastri’s mysterious death from 1966, she also realizes that the world of politics and undercover work can be overwhelming for the common man. The story of a movie is surely put across such a relevant point is commendable, but the implementation of such ideas is far from reality. The direction and narrative of the film are inconsistent. Apart from this, Also the music and both the background score along with the montages of all the songs used, are too loud and heavy to listen and it is also not complimenting the complex nature of the story at all.
One of the movie’s positive point is its ensemble cast featuring Naseeruddin Shah, Mithun Chakraborty, Pallavi Joshi, Mandira Bedi, Pankaj Tripathi and more. But, apart from Mithun Chakraborty, no other actor play the character that does justice to the talents of the actors. Even talking about the film’s lead, Shweta Basu Prasad played a young journalist, gives an honest and appreciating performance in an underdeveloped character.
The Tashkent Files also makes some shocking and controversial claims about India’s political history, dynasty politics and everyone’s right to know the truth. All the sensational content of the movie is relevant and important social issues are enlightened, too. But, the narrating effort is not clear and lacks the finesse that such a complex and heavy-duty movie requires. It is also not satisfying that the final slide of the movie shows the audience that the authenticity of all the facts displayed in the movie cannot be verified.
Director: Vivek Agnihotri
|Naseeruddin Shah||PKR Natarajan|
|Mithun Chakraborty||Shyam Sunder Tripathi|
|Shweta Prasad||Raagini Phule|
|Pankaj Tripathi||Gangaram Jha|
|Mandira Bedi||Indira Joseph Roy|
|Rajesh Sharma||Omkar Kashyap|
|Prakash Belawadi||GK Anantha Suresh|
|Ankur Rathee||Imran Qureshi|
IMDb Ratings: 8.6/10
Times of India Ratings: 2.5/5
Hindustan Times Ratings: 1/5