Netflix film House Arrest offers no originality and is oddly bland, dull and inspires no emotions. Unfortunately, the comedy fails to ignite and feels overlong.
This review of House Arrest (Netflix) contains minor spoilers.
Unfortunately, House Arrest is a terrible advert for the streaming service. The story follows a character called Karan that has subjected himself to self-imposed home confinement. He is world-weary. He cannot be bothered to step foot outside of the house, and because it has been 6 months since he enjoyed the world outside, he now has a phobia of putting one foot outside his doorway.
House Arrest gives the comedy/drama vibe mixed with crippling romance. In the opening act, Karan is heckled by neighbors and delivery men; everyone wants to understand a man that has decided to keep himself indoors. A gangster in the apartments above puts Karan in awkward situations, knowing full well he has no intention of leaving the house.
House Arrest falls at the wayside when he is introduced to a journalist who takes a keen interest in his life. The second and third act feel long and overdone. It becomes a boring, repetitive narrative where a confined man meets a curious journalist. Deep down, the Indian film is a romance story trying to act quirky and it bores to the core.
The second act feels like an eternity with Karan trying to battle outside forces and his growing adoration for the journalist. House Arrest becomes a romance story we did not ask for and completely forgets about Karan’s personal situation. It is astounding how a concept involving a house-confined man can lead to such unoriginality in the story. Watching Karan cook, clean, and show his mundane life to a journalist serves zero thrills.
And it does not help that the lead character is performed on such a dull level. Karan is sold with a calm demeanour but in reality, he is oddly boring. Some will argue that his body language is the entire point of the story; a boring, calm man puts himself under house arrest. Who wants to see that?
Or maybe it is because the actor did not buy the script and deliberately self-sabotaged the performance. Only Ali Fazal will know. But considering House Arrest has a healthy number of views on the trailer, I was expecting way more than a situational drama between two lost souls.