LOOOP LAPETA works due to the experimental plot, stylized narrative and Taapsee Pannu’s performance.

Looop Lapeta Review

LOOOP LAPETA is the story of a girl in a race against time to save her boyfriend. Savina Borkar aka Savi (Taapsee Pannu) is an athlete based in Goa. She is trained by her father Atul Borkar (K C Shankar) and it is his dream to see her become a successful sportsperson. While running a race, she trips and injures her knee so badly that she can no longer participate in races. She gets depressed and is about to end her life when she bumps into Satyajeet aka Satya (Tahir Raj Bhasin). Both fall in love and move in together. Satya wants to become rich using shortcut methods. He tries his hand at gambling but doesn’t get the desired result. He starts working for Victor (Dibyendu Bhattacharya), a gangster cum restaurateur. Savi, meanwhile, takes up the job of taking care of an octogenarian (Abdul Majid Shaikh). On the day of Savi’s birthday, while taking care of the elderly patient, she realizes in his toilet that she is pregnant. She gets high on drugs and this is when Satya calls her. He is in panic and narrates to her that Victor had told him to deliver a parcel to a man and bring cash amounting to Rs. 50 lakhs in return. Victor had given him 80 minutes to complete the job. Satya delivered the package and got the money. While returning to Victor’s restaurant in a bus, Satya starts smoking pot with a fellow passenger. The cops enter the bus at a bus stop. Realizing that Satya is smoking a banned substance, they try to nab him. A scared Satya escapes from the bus. After outsmarting the cops, he realizes that he forgot the bag that contains the money in the bus. Hence, he calls Savi and asks for her help. Savi advises him to go to the bus depot where the bus is headed to. Satya does as instructed and even finds the bus. However, the bag is no longer there. Meanwhile, she runs and meets her father, with whom she has broken all ties after her accident and after she began dating Satya. Savi asks him to pay Rs. 50 lakhs. He refuses straight away. She shows him the middle finger and leaves. She gets into a cab run by a man called Jacob (Sameer Kevin Roy). She asks him to take him to Satya. However, Jacob refuses as he’s depressed since his girlfriend Julia (Shreya Dhanwanthary) is getting married to someone else. An angry Savi breaks his side mirror. A cop, David Colaco (Bhupesh Bandekar), witnesses Savi vandalizing Jacob’s taxi. He runs behind her. Meanwhile, with no other option, Satya tries to steal from a jewellery shop called Shree Mamlesh Charan Chaddhaji & Sons Jewellers. It is run by Mamlesh (Rajendra Chawla) who treats his two sons, Appu (Manik Papneja) and Gappu (Raghav Raj Kakker), in an insulting manner. As luck would have it, Appu and Gappu are fed up with daily humiliation. They are also about to loot the jewellery store at the same time. Satya enters the shop and steals money from the locker. As he’s about to escape, Appu and Gappu enter. Savi reaches the store and helps Satya escape. At the back alley, Satya and Savi are rejoicing when Mamlesh lands up and shoots Satya dead. All of a sudden, Savi finds herself back in the toilet with the pregnancy kit in her hand. It takes a while for her to understand that she had gone back in time. She gets a call from Satya, who informs him about the mess. She realizes that she has got one more chance to save Satya’s life. What happens next forms the rest of the film.

LOOOP LAPETA is based on the 1998 German film RUN LOLA RUN (written and directed by Tom Tykwer; produced by Stefan Arndt). The story is interesting and experimental. Not many films in India have been made in this genre, though GAME OVER [2019] was based on the time loop concept and it also starred Taapsee. However, one is not reminded of it at all as LOOOP LAPETA has an altogether different setting and execution. Vinay Chhawal, Ketan Pedgaonkar, Aakash Bhatia and Arnav Vepa Nanduri’s screenplay is entertaining at places but the side tracks are weak. There was also a lot of scope for humour but the makers miss the chance. Vinay Chhawal, Ketan Pedgaonkar, Aakash Bhatia and Arnav Vepa Nanduri’s dialogues (additional dialogues by Puneet Chadha) are witty and hilarious.

Aakash Bhatia’s direction is technically quite strong. He has made great use of the music and camerawork and given the film a very stylish execution. The film is 135 minutes long but doesn’t seem boring or dragging even for a second. One is completely engrossed in the narrative and looks forward to seeing what happens next. On the flipside, the track of Julia is forced in the narrative. In the third try, Savi could have just avoided bumping into Jacob and getting embroiled into Julia’s problem. Yet, she attempts to help her escape. In the process, she keeps aside the mission of saving her boyfriend and arranging for Rs. 50 lakhs in 50 minutes! Shockingly, in the third attempt, she even goes to the casino on the cruise and one wonders how did she get the time to do so many activities in less than an hour! The track of the jewelers’ sons has a part to play in the main plot but it’s too childish. As for the track of father, it’s written well but fails to evoke emotions.

Speaking of performances, Taapsee Pannu, as always, is excellent. The script might be faulty but she tries her best to rise above it and it makes the film a watchable fare. Tahir Raj Bhasin is decent but looks out of place in some scenes. Dibyendu Bhattacharya is apt for the part. Shreya Dhanwanthary does a fine job and her monologue is superb. However, as mentioned above, her track is needlessly thrown in the script. Sameer Kevin Roy is okay. Raghav Raj Kakker, fondly remembered for playing ‘Karamchand’ in the web series SCAM 1992 [2020], and Manik Papneja try too hard to be funny. The same goes for Bhupesh Bandekar. Rajendra Chawla is a little better. K C Shankar is passable. Abdul Majid Shaikh is cute. Alistar Bennis (Robert) and Varun Pande (Yash; Atul Borkar’s boyfriend) are okay.

Music relegated to the background and won’t have a shelf life. The title song has an exhilarating vibe. ‘Beqaraar’ is a bit memorable. ‘Nirvana’ and ‘Tera Mera’ fail to impress. Rahul Pais and Nariman Khambata’s background score is exciting and appropriate for the film’s overall mood. Yash Khanna’s cinematography is stylish and unique. Rarely have you seen camerawork of this sort. Aejaz Gulab’s action is realistic. Pradeep Paul Francis and Diya Mukerjea’s production design is a bit theatrical. Indrakshi Pattanaik’s costumes have the Goan stamp. The crop tops worn by Taapsee are quite chic. Priyank Prem Kumar’s editing is quite stylized. Lastly, Debjyoti Saha’s title sequence and animation is memorable.

On the whole, LOOOP LAPETA works due to the experimental plot, stylized narrative and Taapsee Pannu’s performance. However, thanks to the loopholes in the script and the weak side tracks, the film at best turns out to be an average fare.