Movie: Karmma Calling
Cast: Raveena Tandon, Namrata Sheth, Varun Sood, Rohit Roy
Rating: 2.5 Stars
Where to watch: Disney + Hotstar
Karmma Calling Review: The laid-back coastal town of Alibaug is glittering with fairy lights as the scion of the Kothari family Ahaan( Varun Sood) is getting engaged to Karmma( Namratha Sheth). However, the most distrusting of this union is Indrani Kothari( Raveena Tandon) Ahaan’s mother, and Alibaug’s most influential woman. Nothing escapes her shrewd eyes. As she greets her prospective daughter-in-law, she whispers into her ears how she would be watching her.
However, calamity befalls, when Indrani’s daughter on a beach romp with her boyfriend, discovers her brother’s bloody body.
Ruchi Narain’s revenge saga is an adaptation of the 2011 American thriller “ Revenge”,. The story of a young woman in this case Ambika Verma aka Karmma Talwar ( Namrata Sheth) who arrives in Alibaug to avenge the death of her father, who was wrongfully jailed for a crime he didn’t commit. Her agenda is to settle scores for the real perpetrators of the crime, and her prime focus is the affluent Kothari Family, and the doyenne of Alibaug’s society, Indrani.
Indrani is a former Bollywood star who is married to the richest man. Well aware of his philandering ways, Indrani turns a blind eye, after all, she is not going to let this ruin the power his wealth brings her. From ostentatious parties, where she even manages to get a chopper ready so that her esteemed guests can see the moon up close in cloudy skies on “karwachauth” day to her influence in making or breaking people and their destines. A controlling mother who dictates the lives of her children, you don’t mess with her.
But the arrival of the mysterious Karmma changes everything. Indrani does not trust her and sees her as trouble. Karma on the other regards Indrani as her arch-nemesis and the one person whom she wants to destroy.
It is a campy soapy fare, that mixes high society, love, and betrayal in an extravagant yet contrived plot. Though it is pacy, and may at times lack the taut tension that usually accompanies a narrative like this. One is intrigued and hooked as to how this one woman will bring down the very edifice of Alibaug’s society which destroyed her life. However, it takes a dip when the titular character Karmma played by Namrata Sheth is unable to articulate the rage, pain, or grief her character has lived with. The actor delivers the same expression when she takes on Indrani when she seduces Ahaan, and even when she meets her long-lost dog.
Even though having been given a wide canvas to perform, she is unable to do justice to her part.
Raveena Tandon is awesome as the conniving Indrani who carries the baggage of the past. The actor packs a punch, and with her screen presence apart, she saves the show from dipping.
Varun Sood endears as Ahaan, the poor rich boy. His resemblance to Kissing Booth star Jacob Elrodi is pretty striking.
It is a binge fest alright, but a case of Karmma is a dish that is served lukewarm.