Nishabdham movie review: Anushka Shetty, R Madhavan film is excruciatingly boring, lacks thrills

Director: Hemant Madhukar
Cast: Anushka Shetty, R. Madhavan, Anjali, Shalini Pandey and Michael Madsen

Hemant Madhukar’s Nishabdham, which stars Anushka Shetty in one of her forgettable characters, has barely anything going for it from the first frame. It opens in a haunted villa where two characters are killed mysteriously and nobody knows who’s responsible. Ideally, this scene should have scared the living daylights out of the viewer and set the mood for the film. Unfortunately, it’s one of the blandest opening scenes and it has very little to no impact whatsoever. Many years later, Madhavan (Antony) and his Anushka (Sakshi) visit the same villa in search of a very special painting where something terrible happens and what follows forms the crux of the story.


Anushka plays a deaf-mute artist while Madhavan plays a renowned musician. The film is entirely shot in Seattle, US but for some reason all the actors feel so out of place. Hollywood actor Michael Madsen plays a key role but for some weird reason they’ve got someone else to dub his lines in English. Madsen, who is popular for his association with Quentin Tarantino, is a major miscast and he leaves you scratching your head with his performance. The film, which has absolutely nothing worth cheering for, reeks of artificialness in every frame and one can’t make sense of the fact why it was shot in Seattle in the first place and not anywhere else. Neither the locations nor the foreign characters justify the makers’ intent to shoot the entire film in the US. Of course, setting it in India would’ve had the same impact courtesy the lousy writing but it would have at least saved the makers a good deal of money.

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Anushka was supposed to do the heavy lifting in Nishabdham but hers is a character you don’t feel anything for. It’s a horribly written role and Anushka does little to make it even slightly interesting. This is probably one of those films where every actor – regardless of their repertoire – competes with each other to disappoint with terrible performance. Madhavan, who is usually quite good in the characters he picks, is another major miscast and he makes a mockery of his character. Anjali is the sole character that makes a slight impact but is a major turn-off when she mouths some English dialogues. Anushka sets out to avenge the death of an important character but as a viewer you’re left with very little sympathy for both the characters.

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Nishabdham is a colossal mess and there are no second thoughts about it. Despite the presence of some talented stars like Anushka and Madhavan, the film is excruciatingly boring and lacks the thrills to keep one invested throughout.

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Reference: HT

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