The suspense thriller based on a reality game show sails through on the back of a strong script and powerful performances by its lead actors
Table No. 21 is the story of Vivaan (Rajeev Khandelwal) and Siya (Tena Desae), a married couple in their 30s, who win a honeymoon package for their wedding anniversary to Fiji Islands. While in Fiji, as they savour one freebie after another, a seemingly innocent chance to participate in a game show is offered to them by a menacing looking Mr Khan (Paresh Rawal with a sinister hairdo). The prize money is Rs 21 crores, and of course there is a catch. The couple has to sign a bond , a mortal agreement that if they fail to answer the eight questions and perform the eight tasks assigned, the consequences will be deadly. The game soon takes an intimidating tone as the tasks get more personal and deadly, and the couple’s relationship strain under the secrets they reveal to each other.
The movie’s concept is rather interesting, and the character that Rajeev Khandelwal plays is ironically at the receiving end of a Sach Ka Samna type of a game show, where each lie will cost him dearly. Packaged sleekly and with good values, there are a few loose ends visible in what is mostly a decent effort to bring a ‘different’ kind of movie to the audiences. Both Paresh Rawal and Rajeev Khandelwal have given strong performances in a movie where the script truly is the star. Tena Desae has done a good job too, and is more than just a pretty face in the film. She is convincing as a wife and a woman who takes risks and has a few secrets of her own to hide.
The strongest point of the film though is the suspense. In the last 20 minutes, the movie goes on a completely different track where the shades of all the characters – black and white, good and evil, turn grey and come on an equal footing. The movie often goes into the flashback mode, the reason for which revealed in the finale. The story does drag a bit, but the day is saved with an out of the blue shocker of a suspense. Overall a good package, we are left with a feeling that a tremendous scope for some class action sequences is wasted in the semi-lame tasks that the duo is asked to perform in the film. A definite one-time watch, Table No.21 is a risqué and sexy film that manages to be different and almost worth the ticket price. It delivers a serious message as a parting goodbye!