The Archies is a 2023 Indian Hindi language teen musical comedy film directed by Zoya Akhtar who also produced the film with Reema Kagti under Tiger Baby Films and Sharad Devarajan under Graphic India. The film features the fictional music band produced by and related to Archie Comics, and stars Agastya Nanda, Khushi Kapoor, Suhana Khan, Vedang Raina, Mihir Ahuja, Aditi “Dot” Saigal and Yuvraj Menda.
The film adaptation of the comics was under development since March 2018, before Akhtar’s involvement as the director and producer of the film, officially announced in November 2021. Following an extensive pre-production and casting process, the film was shot during April–December 2022 in two concurrent schedules across Ooty, Mauritius and Mumbai. Nikos Andritsakis handled the film’s cinematography, with the original score composed by Shankar–Ehsaan–Loy and Jim Satya, the former also composed the songs with Ankur Tewari, The Islanders and Saigal.
The Archies premiered at the 54th International Film Festival of India on 22 November 2023, and was released on Netflix on 7 December 2023. The film received mixed to negative reviews from critics.
- Agastya Nanda as Archibald “Archie” Andrews
- Khushi Kapoor as Betty Cooper
- Suhana Khan as Veronica “Ronnie” Lodge
- Vedang Raina as Reginald Mantle
- Mihir Ahuja as Jughead Jones
- Aditi “Dot” Saigal as Ethel Muggs
- Yuvraj Menda as Dilton Doiley
- Rudra Mahuvakar as Moose Mason
- Santana Roach as Midge Klump
- Diya Gupta as Cheryl Blossom
- Suhaas Ahuja as Fred Andrews, Archie’s father
- Tara Sharma as Mary Andrews
- Satyajit Sharma as Hal Cooper
- Koel Purie as Alice Cooper
- Alyy Khan as Hiram Lodge, Veronica’s father
- Kamal Sidhu as Hermione Lodge
- Luke Kenny as Ricky Mantle
- Dimpy Fadhya as Vicky Mantle
- Darshan Gokani as Forsythe Jones
- Bambi Juneja as Gladys Jones
- Neeraj Menda as Kenny Doiley
- Janvi Menda as Tanya Doiley
- Deven Khote as Mr. Waldo Weatherbee
- Salone Mehta as Ms. Geraldine Grundy
- Nikhil Kapoor as Pop Tate
- Asif Ali Beg as Smithers
- Samedhika Dutt as Lynn, teenage girl with Reggie in car.
- Vinay Pathak as H. Dawson
- Delnaaz Irani as Pam
- James Alter as James Gomes
- Pooja Sarup as Mrs Otters
- Ashish Sawhny as Roger Moore
- Sahil Jaffery as Nigel Timmins
- Avan Contractor as Miss Mathias
- Dierdree Wright as Miss Misquitta
- Nikhil Kapoor as Pop Tates
- Ashok Banthia as Uncle Benny
- Farhan Akhtar as Ben Andrews (voice only)
The film premiered at the 54th International Film Festival of India on 22 November 2023. The film’s premiere was held at the Nita Mukesh Ambani Cultural Centre on 5 December.
It was released on Netflix on 7 December 2023.
On the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, 56% of 16 critics’ reviews are positive, with an average rating of 6/10.
Amy Nicholson of The New York Times wrote that “this inessential Bollywood-tinged fantasia is two and a half hours of soda shops, chaste dates, candy-colored petticoats, and athletic musical numbers”. Udita Jhunjhunwala of Scroll.in termed it a “good-looking nostalgia piece”, but dismissed the dialogues as occasionally “banal”; she considered the “real stars” to be the “production design, costumes, cinematography, art direction, choreography and locations”. NDTV’s Saibal Chatterjee labelled it “a beguiling oddity in style, substance and spirit”, adding that the “pat and predictable” film “flows without a hitch and articulates its points with a refreshing lightness of touch”.
Among the ensemble cast of newcomers, Sukanya Verma of Rediff.com deemed Suhana Khan and Vedang Raina “ready-to-ship star material”. Terming the film’s cast as “Nepotism Central”, Shubhra Gupta of The Indian Express believed that “Khushi has more verve than both Agastya and Suhana, but I will also say that the latter did grow on me”. Conversely, Jhunjunwala found Khushi Kapoor a “bit stiff in her dance moves and speech” and Agastya Nanda “likeable though a touch diffident in his timbre”.
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