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Murder Mubarak review - Sara Ali Khan, Vijay Varma, Karisma Kapoor starrer brings more boredom than bloodshed

Murder Mubarak presents a scenario where a stellar cast grapples with a stagnant story, leading to an underwhelming whodunit thriller.

Murder Mubarak review - Sara Ali Khan, Vijay Varma, Karisma Kapoor starrer brings more boredom than bloodshed
Murder Mubarak

Last Updated: 12.52 PM, Mar 15, 2024

Murder Mubarak story:

A murder at a luxurious leisure club in the nation's capital sets in motion an inquiry that becomes more intricate as time goes on, with secrets and lies emerging and suspects piling up.

Murder Mubarak review:

Only Murders in the Building has spoiled me in a way as I prepare myself, thinking that if it's a murder mystery, there will always be multiple killings happening. Well, solving one murder seems like a cakewalk, as not only the cops but everyone else put on their detective hats. Adapted from Anuja Chauhan's book Club You To Death, Murder Mubarak is a quirky suspense thriller that runs for two hours and 21 minutes. I am sure the book must have cooked up a story so well that you feel it can translate well on the screen. How I wish it was true! I mean, look at the meaty cast. 


The film begins at an elite club and, more or less, ends there. Everything everywhere reeks of elitism, even if the lifestyle doesn't support it. The personalities never change. Rich, spoiled, and heartless members gather at a club for a tambola night, preparing for the upcoming election for the club's president, with Ranvijay Singh (Sanjay Kapoor) and Shehnaaz Noorani (Karisma Kapoor) competing, kicking off the film.

In no time, the scene changes, and the competition gets tougher as a murder takes place in the club of Leo (Aashim Gulati), who is the gym instructor. Why tougher? Everyone looks like a potential murderer, and if there's an ensemble cast, of course, every person has a motive to kill him. The quick succession of the murder as well as the beginning of the investigation just drops to a snail pace, and to get to the motive, Homi Adajania tries hard to fill in gaps unnecessarily.

Deciding which part to take and how to execute it efficiently is the main challenge in translating a book to the screen. Do we need to see every character described poetically and elaboratively in the film, as we do in books? Performers bring the characters to life on screen, eliminating the need for excessive description.

Ok, let's get back to Murder Mubarak. The film has a cast to die for, including Pankaj Tripathi, Sara Ali Khan, Vijay Varma, Dimple Kapadia, Karisma Kapoor, Sanjay Kapoor, Tisca Chopra, Suhail Nayyar, and Tara Alisha Berry. Tripathi plays ACP Bhavani Singh, who plays a very quirky, poetic, and shudh Hindi-speaking cop. Well, perfect casting, I must say!

He begins the investigation, which is difficult because everyone starts pinpointing one another, creating a clearer motive to kill Leo. On the other hand, Bambi Todi (Sara Ali Khan) and Akash Dogra (Vijay Varma) start the side hustle of investigating the murder while also rekindling their romance in some way.

Yes, I have not read the book, and I had no idea about the plot twists or what each character is up to. However, as the film progresses, Adajania makes it very easy for the viewers to guess the killer, along with a slight hint of the motive in his execution. The drag screenplay gives us more time to guess the killer, thus making me enjoy the film less.

Moreover, the filmmaker is known to tell a twisted story at a slow pace every time he announces a film. But it felt like Murder Mubarak needed a major shift from the Adajania style of filmmaking, as it's not a story filled with daylight, like we have seen in Being Cyrus, Cocktail, or even Finding Fanny

The rich shine the most in the night, and the filmmaker made sure to show it with the brightest of gems placed in every prop, be it jewellery, sculptures, chandeliers, or what not! But even in that brightness, the execution remains drab and dry. 

I try my level best to get into the groove of the story and not start a guessing game about who could be the murderer. But here, I felt compelled to put on my thinking cap and quickly deduced the identity of the murderer and their motive after the story hit a roadblock an hour in! From that moment on, I simply wanted the film to wrap up, feeling that the rest of the ensemble cast amounted to nothing more than special appearances.

There are too many actors, but no one gets to shine like the pieces of jewellery they wear in every frame! It reminded me of the latest season of Only Murders in the Building, where you have a bunch of talented actors, from Meryl Streep to Paul Rudd, but at what cost? The faltered screenplay and execution spoiled the play. 

In Murder Mubarak, too, it was delightful to watch Dimple Kapadia being a bit of a nymphomaniac, or Karisma Kapoor peaking at narcissism, while Tisca Chopra was also emulating a golddigger in the best possible way. But the arc just stagnates there, giving the impression that it was merely for show and failing to serve as a catalyst.

Do murder mysteries need a longer runtime than a usual Bollywood flick? Well, after watching Murder Mubarak, I would say, Please don't. You can't have a suspenseful film that leaves you exhausted like this one did. Even the performances couldn't save it—not that there were better ones here. 

Karisma was without a doubt the actor who most impressed me; I wished I could see more of her, as well as the catty Tisca. To some extent, Vijay Varma also gets the right attention, but that's about it!

Watch at your own risk, but you still have the liberty to keep your remote control handy if you wish to forward the fillers, which bring nothing new to the table.

Murder Mubarak verdict:

There is a dearth of substantial flavour after devouring Murder Mubarak's sumptuous buffer of intrigue. The film's investigational bent belies its lacklustre narrative, which leaves viewers wondering not "whodunit" but "why watch it."


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