Previously I’ve watched a film and a play called ‘The Interview’. Both involved attempts at injury. I suppose it isn’t so unlikely to have bloody curdling events linked to an interview. Given the brief period of time and the need to make a (good) impression it is inevitable that there is a sense of desperation that automatically follows.
Enter Karan Pandit, who plays the interviewee, as promising as any other. With loans to repay and ill parents he is needy enough to want the job as well. He seems almost perfect for the job at hand but is expectedly nervous. There is something endearing about the side parted hair and his eagerness to say the right things. His efforts at getting this interview in his favour may perhaps lead the audience to be more sympathizing of him than the secretary (played by Amrita Puri) in a tight skirt and painfully high heels. He is willing to endure a lot in order to create a good impression. Even though uncertain about the direction of the interview more than once, he plays along when asked what animal represents him best, is lauded for being the right zodiac sign, or the time when he becomes a hesitant participant in the office drama. There is much that he has to endure through the length of the play. As the interview proceeds towards getting stranger by the minute, Pandit goes from being slightly nervous towards dizzying levels of frenzy. He draws quite a few laughs with his eagerness to cope as the interviewer (played by Kashin Shetty) adds one bizarre round after another to the interview.
The interviewer on the other hand never bats an eye. Shetty plays the possible employer as disinterested, almost impatient. The more Keith, a lower level executive and the interviewee try to please him, the more conscious is Shetty’s effort to seem nonchalant. He successfully reminds the audience in more than one amusing way why the man in control is hated by everyone in the workplace.
Tariq Vasudeva plays Keith with mad energy. At any moment, you expect his eyeballs to fall off. He makes the others in the cast seem disturbingly calm. Too needy, too silly, too stupid, Keith is a caricature of the paranoia that surrounds a job in the private sector. Shamelessly flirting with his boss’s secretary, trying to crush the new guy, Tariq makes it very hard for the audience to sympathize with Keith. In more than one occasion, he helps lighten the narrative when the several rounds of interview begin to get monotonous.
The most impressive part of ‘The Interview’ however, is its script and its pace. The play makes for a highly entertaining dark comedy with its several plot twists. With lie detectors, office affairs, and employees desperately clinging to their jobs the script is riddled with one shocking revelation after another. While one would expect the surprise-every-five minutes to get a bit trying after a while, the pace of the play makes sure that before the audience is bored of one gimmick, another one is presented. That said, not one funny moment went by without it drawing laughs from the audience.
An action packed dark comedy and a hilariously strange turn of events, ‘The Interview’ makes for a really fun watch.