By Amitava Bhattacharya(07 Apr 2009)
99 is the stroy of two men from two different cities, who share the same feeling of being 'deja vu' at '99'. Their frustration is the commonality, which is, not being able to make the century. The movie revolves around the men who want to break away from this crux and strike it big and bold. what follows then is a roller coaster ride of events that take place in these cities through the characters that are very realistic, twists of fate, conspiracies, unlikely crashes, money laundering, and finally two cricket matches with loads of money riding on them, ending in an on-the-edge climax.
Sachin, an engineering drop-out from Mumbai, is an ambitious and street-smart guy who along with his cousin Zaramud is involved in small time scams. Zaramud's lack of common sense often land them in troubles. Oneday they land up in a big trouble after they steal (and crash as well) a car that belongs to a bookie, Known as AGM in the circuit, who runs a cyber cafe to cover up his illegal activities. AGM hook up both of them to work for him to pay off their debts arising from the damage they made.
Rahul (Boman Irani), a Bank manager in Delhi, has an uncanny and unusual quality in him. Rahul loves to gamble and has never lost a bet so far! he is a guy whose 'luck' is always on his side. he believes that he has figured out what it takes to be successful in gambling: the timing. But he messes it all up on a day when it mattered the most. On an eventful day of Nov 1999, he places a very big bet on the India-New Zealand match. Rahul can't figure out that the match was fixed and placed a wrong one. He ends up owing big money to the bookie from Mumbai -- AGM. All he has is 3 months to pay up.
After four months, AGM sends Sachin and Zaramud to Delhi to recover his money from Rahul. In delhi, the two Mumbaites are taken into a jolly ride by almost everybody they bump into; right from the cabbie to the street kids. Meanwhile, Rahul -- being under tremendous pressure to pay up AGM's money, hatches a plan that he thinks can cruise him out of the debt. He temporarily borroughs money from his employer bank and plans to bet that amount on an upcoming cricket match. But before that can happen, Sachin and Zaramud -- out to recover the money from Rahul, snaps up the briefcase where he stowed the borroughed money, and are on their way to return to Mumbai. But as luck wouldnt let that happen, they end up losing the money too. Now, Sachin and Rahul both are in for bigger troubles. Sachin must now repay more money to AGM to save their lives, and Rahul must return the money to bank to save himself from being sent to jail for a long long time. Desperate, they hatch a plot to make money, lots of it that would change their lives forever. Can they do it?
'99' tries to infuse dark comedy into a drama that tries to capture the unbelievable craze and emotions that grip the nation around cricket. Using the backdrop of two key cities and highlighting the cultural clash that exist between them is truly symbolic in this current scenario where divisive political intent is creating an uproar among the ordinary citizens.