KHAALI PEELI REVIEW (2020). Directed by Maqbool Khan. Starring Ishaan Khattar and Ananya Panday.

Alright, as I mentioned with my TENET review, I am lucky to have all the cinemas opened in my country, Fiji. This is a big thing considering that Khaali Peeli is a digital release because the pandemic is still going strong in India. Thankfully (maybe not), I was able to experience it in the cinema.

I haven’t watched a Bollywood movie for a long time (obvious reasons) and I can say that I have missed nothing. This is because nothing has changed.

The story starts with Pooja (Ananya Panday) stealing money and jewelry and running away in order to avoid marrying an aged man. She runs into a taxi driver (Ishaan Khattar), who helps her escape after she agrees to pay him. We later find out that the two know each other from childhood but neither of them knows that at the moment. What happens next is just the same old drama which includes hero, heroine, police, goons, forced music, over the top action, and few emotional scenes. The hero manages to beat the villain in the end and they live happily ever after.

The good part of the movie is the chemistry between the lead pair and the acting. I am not a fan of nepotism but if it works, then I have no problems with it. Ishaan was amazing, even though I feel his potential was wasted in such a film. I didn’t even know him before watching this, but I’ll surely remember his name now. As for Ananya Pandey, no matter what the mainstream media says, I think she has the potential to become one of the top actresses in Bollywood. I said it after the disastrous Student of the Year 2 that Ananya has great potential, and I stand by it. Just like Ishaan, I think her potential is being wasted by her film choices. Pati Patni Aur Woh was good, but everything else hasn’t been. I hope both of them are more careful before choosing their next script. Although, I think it’s not entirely their fault considering the lack of good content available in Bollywood.

As for the movie, everything that could’ve gone wrong did go wrong. The directing is poor. The repetitive flashback scenes are also a downer. And I have never been a fan of unnecessary songs and over the top action. A few examples: there’s a scene where the couple decides to go to a festival in the middle of being chased. Even better, they decide to dance on stage to avoid the goon’s attention. What a disguise. Towards the end, Ananya’s character even pulls off the headlights of a vehicle with one hand to hit the villain. I was like the three of you together wouldn’t be able to pull it off.

Overall, Khaali Peeli is a typical poor Bollywood masala film with a new star-cast but NOT with a new story. But honestly, I have seen a lot worse than this.


STW: 5/30, D: 2/25, C: 4/8, E: 3/5, A: 8/10, PVD: 6/12, S: 2/10