Night Manager 2 review: Shelly and Shaan’s final showdown will keep you on the edge of your seats while finding the mole in this arms-dealing empire!

Aishwarya Srinivasan
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Night Manager 2

In our Night Manager 2 review, we talk about the high paced spy thriller coming to a full circle and everything that did or did not work about it!

The Night Manager which is an adaptation of a British series of the same name, starring Tom Hiddleston as the lead proved to be an ambitious Indian remake with its first part. Shaan Sen Gupta (Aditya Roy Kapur), a loyal Night Manager of a hotel in Dhaka, crosses paths with a 14-year-old girl Safina (Arista Mehta), who is being trapped and abused by her husband, Freddie Rehman (Resh Lamba). An associate of Shailendra aka Shelly Rungta (Anil Kapoor), a dangerous arms dealer. 

With the mission to save the poor girl from a life of injustice, Shaan comes up with a rescue plan which terribly fails and results in her brutal death. This is when he finds himself knee-deep into Shelly’s world in order to seek revenge for Safina’s murder. He makes his way into his inner circle, earns his trust, and rarely leaves any doubt to find him suspicious. He does all of this with the help of Lipika Saikia Rao (Tillotama Shome), a RAW agent who has chased Shelly for years and was always left with zilch in her hand, so Shaan was her best option. The two have better teamwork even while staying in different countries compared to Shelly and his team, who can’t keep it together even when they’re always glued to each other. 

Also Read: There’s one and only one Anil Kapoor in Bollywood and he’s aging like fine wine!

Part 2 is the continuation of where the story left us in the first installment. Shelly feels like he is the one calling the shots, but it's actually Shaan playing the real game right under his nose without Shelly even noticing. He has reached so high up in the ladder that even Shelly's most trusted right-hand man, Brij Pal (Saswata Chatterji) feels threatened by the attention he's been getting. Shelly's company is under his name now, and not just that, he has a new identity. While the old kind-hearted Shaan takes a back seat, the more ruthless 'Abhimanyu', as Shelly named him, takes center stage. He fully takes advantage of an anxious Shelly who is almost about to go bankrupt, and this one last consignment, which is the biggest he has ever done, could make or break his empire. This means he has a lot to lose with everything on stake, and there's zero room for error, aka it's time for Shaan to go for the eye of the tiger. 

In the midst of all the chaos, Shelly's girlfriend, Kaveri (Shobhita Dhulipala), and Shaan fall in love with each other, which obviously wasn't a part of the plan. With just three episodes, creator Sandeep Modi and Shridhar Raghavan tie all loose ends together, and things happen so fast that the show is over before you can even process Shaan and Lipika's clean-sweep revenge plan. The show is packaged to look like a Hollywood-style action movie, but the core of it lies in its story, which will keep you glued to your screens. Trust me; part 2 is anything but predictable.

Of course, the leading men of the story, Anil Kapoor and Aditya Roy Kapur, are easy on the eyes and literally feel like they never age but keeping the undeniably gorgeous looks aside, the two finesse their parts and prove worthy of carrying the story on their shoulders. Shaan is calm in even the most life-threatening situations, which makes you wonder what is going on in his head. A girl who he literally knew just for 24 hours, changed the entire course of his life. She is rooted so deep in his mind that he simply cannot let go or rest till he brings her the justice she deserves. And it is so refreshing to see Anil Kapoor in an antagonist's shoes. Who once played the hero who saves the day, Mr. India is now fully ready to sacrifice India for his greed as Shelly. With more than 40 years in the industry, he is the prime example of breaking stereotypes and being never too late to experiment with your roles as an actor. 

Shobhita as Kaveri has nothing much to do in part 1 except for being Shelly’s trophy, which he flaunts in front of everyone, but in part 2, she uses her charms as a means to get secrets out of him. But I would still say an actor like Shobhita was not used to her full potential in this show. She is either to be rescued by Shelly or Shaan and has a mysterious past which honestly isn’t that mysterious either. And the idea of Shaan and Kaveri getting attracted to each other also feels quite forced. Yes, I know they are two extremely good-looking people, but that doesn’t always mean they have to be together. With whatever little ‘love story’ they had in this show, you don’t feel the chemistry between them at all. 

But my favorite character of them all is Lipika. Tillotama Shome is joyously messy as the RAW agent, and her desperation to catch a monster like Shelly by hook or crook while heavily pregnant will tug at your heart. Pregnant women are superhumans, and if you add nonchalantly fighting the bad guys to the list, there is nothing more badass than that. She reminded me of Alicia Sierra from Money Heist, another fierce character who was also pregnant and was also behind capturing who she thought was a bad guy. I’m not saying that Lipika’s character is particularly inspired by Alicia’s, but the two have the same amount of craziness in their eyes to catch the culprit. 


Night Manager 2 will most definitely leave you satisfied by the end of it, and you'll know what I mean when I say the story has come full circle when you watch the last episode of the series. We've had many remakes of stories from the West in the past, and most of them have not fared well, but The Night Manager takes the plot of the English one but fits an Indian screenplay into it, making it more easier to digest for the Indian audience. So this high-octane series with guns, sex, planning, plotting and politics tries its best to do justice to the benchmark set by the OG story and it's worth the binge. 

Night Manager 2 is currently streaming on Disney+Hotstar!

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