The Archies Review

The Archies is an Indian adaptation of American comic of the same name. Directed by Zoya Akhtar, this Netflix release stars newcomers and some of them are star kids. This movie follows a musical storytelling which is a common Disney genre. But how does this sound in the desi version.? Set in the backdrop a fictional town called Riverdale, the movie follows the path of a bunch of teens who has to campaign for a cause. The primary plot is more political and carries a social message. But does this central plot succeed while executing the screenplay.?

Zoya Akhtar is that kind of director who has earlier made films like ZIndagi Na Milegi Dobara & Dil Dhadkane Do. All these films centre around an elitist background where the characters are more upper-class. Even the fictional Riverdale town constitutes of people belonging to different class but they appear more premier as they are Anglo Indians. This seemed to be a comfort zone for the director but she manages to squander the opportunity despite developing the characters. The bonding and friendship between the lead characters are pretty neat accompanied by some great music.

The real issue is with the development of a proper conflict between the characters. This is not properly connected to primary plot and loses its way before it is even developed. The whole drama is marred by a half hearted and trivial political subject. The issue needed a strong and imaginative execution coming out of the comfort zone. Probably, the director might have intended at a feel-good storytelling but the primary plot needed a serious approach. The emotions never go deeper or give an inspiring result.

The Indian adaptation required a desi flavour while dealing with the political subject. The repetitive episodes of teen drama weren’t convincing either. But that wouldn’t have been a concern if the premise had interesting segments involving the teens. Here, the primary plot never gets serious and the teens seemed confused about how to act. The actors haven’t given anything special in these portions but they were decent considering this as their debut feature film. Suhana Khan & Vedang Raina stand out among the teens.

Verdict : Barring the teen episodes, a superficial and dispirited storytelling that might appeal to a selected section of A-list audience.