Detective Nani poster

Detective Nani

wogma rating: Watch if you have nothing better to do (?)

quick review:

The subject is a heavy one for kids and the film portrays a serious issue in a way that doesn't engage adults. So, it misses both the potential target audiences. Also, the social issue is touched upon superficially.

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Director: Romilla Mukherjee
Running time: 140 minutes
Genres: Crime, Family
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Detective Nani - Preview

- meeta, a part of the audience

I want to conduct a poll. Did you think the name Detective Nani and the promos imply that the film is made for kids? Yes +1. That's mine.

Well, I saw it and I thought we were heavily misled. The film is hardly for kids. If at all, it could be for kids above 12 to sensitize them to conditions that some unfortunate children live in. I won't get any more specific because the film tries to be sort-of secretive about its intentions well past half-way. Rest assured that kids are going to have tons of uncomfortable questions. But, also rest assured those questions are not going to be about the dreaded three-letter word.

Add to that the wanna-be cute songs and the so-humorless hour in between. Certainly not a kid-pleaser. The annoying thing is its not even made with the intention to entertain or enlighten adults. Adults know about the peddlers in our society. We've heard enough stories of supposedly well-meaning outfits being involved. There's no more insight or discovery undiscovered here. And it's all done in a very lackluster manner too.

And yet the story is complicated enough to hold interest if one is really keen to. It's not a complete write-off. But there's no detailed characterization here. For example, you don't even get a glimpse of the motivations of the villains. They are there and they are evil. Enough said.

None of the actors do a half-decent job of acting either. It's full of perfunctory and "oh, I'm before the camera" performances. Almost two and a half hours of amateur acting does get pretty tedious. There is a one-odd line that's funny and evokes a smile, but too few and thus very far in between to please anyone.

I was actually hoping for something that I could take my kids for on a hot summer afternoon, a day of vacation well-spent. But, no. It's neither sweet enough for the kids, nor mean enough for the adults.

- meeta, a part of the audience

12 reviewers(?) - 1 yays 4 so-so 7 nays

Warning: clicking on "full review" will take you to an external website that could contain spoilers.

Thumbs up, Movie Talkies : ...What really works for this movie, more than the mystery is the character of Naani and her very eccentric and yet very homely methods of working and solving the crime.... full review

So-So, by Martin D'Souza, Glamsham.com : ... The narration is where the film falls flat.... full review

So-So, by Taran Adarsh, IndiaFM : ...DETECTIVE NAANI is tedious and interesting, both.... full review

So-So, by Sonia Chopra, Rediff : ...The story's endearing without doubt. What spoils it is the painfully slow pace and bland twists and turns including mysterious murders, clues, and a miraculous ending.... full review

So-So, by Nikhat Kazmi, Times of India : ... Not bad at all, this sweet little adventure about an adorable grandmother... full review

Thumbs down, by Abhishek Mande, Buzz18 : ...t stretches for as long as 135-odd minutes and manages to give out some rather confusing signals.... full review

Thumbs down, by Udita Jhunjhunwala, DNA : ...It's not intriguing, scary, amusing or even cute. There are few mystery adventures that bore you. This one does... full review

Thumbs down, by Shashi Baliga, Hindustan Times : ...Debutante director Romilla Mukherjee has her lead actress play the nani sugary-sweet, most of the characters verge on caricatures, and there is some pretty amateurish acting... full review

Thumbs down, by Rajeev Masand, IBN Live : ...It is in reality an excruciatingly unfunny film about a 72-year-old biddy who uncovers a child-kidnapping racket... full review

Thumbs down, by Joginder Tuteja, Now Running.com : ...After a good beginning and an average middle portion, the last few reels manage to pull back the movie, saving it from being an entirely lame exercise.... full review

Thumbs down, by Goher Iqbal Punn, Radio Sargam : ...The story could only be intersting if seen on the paper. But on the celluloid, the story, screenplay and exceution all appear dull.... full review

Thumbs down, by Sampurn, real bollywoood : ...It tries to be a cute whodunit but ends up being a mess and a waste of your time.... full review

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This page has additional observations, other than the ones noted in the main review.

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: None
  • Language: No profanity
  • Nudity & Sexual content: None
  • Concept: Kids being kidnapped and misused.

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