The title of Khaali Peeli (a Mumbaiya slang which means “ without any reason” or “Aimlessly”), in itself explains the reason why this was made. Starring “Nepokids” Ishaan Khattar and Ananya Pandey, Khaali Peeli is first indian movie to be released on OTT(on ZeePlex with Pay Per View Model)
Khaali Peeli is the story of Vijay (Ishaan Khattar) aka Blackie (because he used to black tickets outside a theatre). He is a taxi driver in Mumbai and one night he meets Pooja (Ananya Pandey) who is on the run from her forced marriage, with a lot of money.
The backstory then shows Vijay as a child, where he tries to rob a jewellery store with his father (Anup Soni). They get busted and his father runs away, whereas Vijay gets caught by police.
He escapes and moves to Mumbai where he joins the local goon Yousuf Chikna (Jaideep Ahlawat) and starts to black tickets for him. He meets a girl Pooja outside the theatre and he develops a bond with her.
Then enters Chowksi Seth (Swanand Kirkire), who sees young Pooja and falls in love with her. He connects with Yousuf and tells him to take care of Pooja till she is 18, post which he will marry her. Yousuf thus asks Blackie to stay away from Pooja and then he runs away.
After many years, Vijay and Pooja finally meet when she is on the run and then recognise each other. The rest of the story is about the cat and mouse game between Pooja, Vijay and Yousuf’s men, and how finally Vijay reunites with Pooja and his father.
Khaali Peeli also throws some random characters during the run, in Zakir Hussain as Inspector Tavde or Satish Kaushik as Inspector Bhim.
The performances of the film are very average. Ishan Khattar as Vijay/Blackie doesn’t look like a taxi driver and doesn’t act good either. In some of the scenes he looks like he is trying to mimic Shahid, which is not effective as well.
Same with Ananya, who plays Pooja, the damsel in distress. She is mostly expressionless, and gives a very average performance just like Ishaan. She neither emotes well nor her dialogue delivery works well.
Remaining cast has still given a better performance. Swanand Kirkire as Chowksey Seth shines in a brief role. Zakir Husaain as Inspector Tavde has again played a similar role as his many other films and has given a usual performance.
Also, Jaideep Ahlawat, post highly acclaimed performance in Pataal Lok, tries his best as Yousuf Chikna but is let down by a poor script. Satish Kaushik as Inspector Bhim tries to provide comic relief and is ok.
Child artists who play Young Vijay and Pooja have given the best performances of the lot. Anup Soni is ok.
Khaali Peeli has nothing going for it. Starting from the plot, which is too stale and has nothing in it to hold viewers interest. The movie takes the same predictable path and bores.
Performances are bad. Lead actors’ performance is not upto the mark, and no one from the supporting cast stands out either.
The music of the film is pretty ordinary (along with one controversial song where lyrics now changed from “Beyonce Sharma Jayegi” to “Duniya Sharma Jayegi”). Such films need at least one chartbuster number which this film has not got.
The direction of Maqbool Khan is very weak and he has failed to make an interesting film, and has not been able to get good performances from his actors (even the very capable ones).
Overall the movie has not scored in any of the departments and is a big letdown.
With all the nepotism debate going around, this film was supposed to get a poor response anyhow, but discounting that as well, Khaali Peeli is a very bad movie.
Khaali Peeli has a stale plot, bad music, poor performances and then on top of it, it introduces the Pay Per View model. Almost 300 Rs for a view, this movie might face a big task to be a profitable venture for Zee.