Shaitan is more like a Ferrari that tries to run on water. After seeing the originality in narration and the visual flair, couldn’t help wondering what some ingenuity in the plot couldn’t have added to the mix. And it made me think about the usual pitfalls that thrillers usually fall into.
Major spoilers ahead-
1)It is a no-brainer that once the kidnap plot goes awry, they are going to turn against each other. The crux of the writing is about how this is going to unwind. There are numerous permutations and combinations that could be used in any multi-character piece but the trick is to make it appear that whatever happened is somehow inevitable. Now instead of Tanya getting almost killed in the hands of KC and KC getting killed by Dash, would it have really mattered if it was otherwise? Would something be amiss if instead of Zubi, KC finally falls into the hands of the cop? What I am trying to say is that all the plot choices appear to be arbitrary and doesn’t fulfill any poetic justice (and it doesn’t mean that they couldn’t be absolute random events). For that, characters and events need to be set up to make it appear that everyone succumb to their own eccentricities, strengths and flaws. In ‘No country for old men’, murder of Josh Brolin’s character and his wife’s character may appear random meaningless events but we cant say it doesn’t make sense from the frame work and perspective of that film. At the same time, those events surprise us as plot twists.
2)Coming up with back stories for characters is easy. But it is difficult to resist the temptation to add them. Amy’s mother angle and the cop’s marital woes didn’t add anything to the story but did cut down the pace. Especially Amy’s back story needed tighter editing.
3)To make the characters appear real, there is something extra required in writing. Okay, you are writing about upper-class youth of today. Okay, so you need to put in some dysfunctional families, some uninhibited sex talk, some cocaine snorting, some goofiness, expensive houses and automobiles- but until this point, the writing is autopilot. Now there is something extra that needs to go in to make these characters real. Some quirky details, usually ignored personal tidbits, mundane personally relevant conundrums- that is what would make this characters really real. And that is tough to write, even if you are aware that they need to be written.