Films based on sensitive real-life political issues tend to get it wrong more often than not. But going by the trailer for Batla House, starring John Abraham and Nora Fatehi, which opens on Independence Day, based on the real-life police encounter in 2008 when alleged terrorists were gunned down in Delhi, one can say the film gets it right from the first frame of the deftly-cut trailer.
The clenched footage wastes no time in establishing the dramatic tension inherent in the plot. John Abraham who has now shaped into one of the most conscientious actors of Hindi cinema plays the morally-torn cop who may — just may — be responsible for the death of innocent students whom he and his khaki army shoot point blank for being suspected terrorists.
This is enormously strong stuff indeed, unapologetic and harsh in its exploration of the truth behind one of the most high-profile police encounters in recent times, as it raises questions of authority as weighed against the conscience and really, how far should we go in pursuit of the truth?
The trailer of Batla House has an interesting cast pitching in performances that weigh themselves between a sob and a scream. However, I found the background score a tad too loud. I wouldn’t hold that against the sharp and effective tone of the trailer. The music used in trailers is often very different from how it ends up sounding in the film.
I don’t know what the trailer of the other August 15 release Mission Mangal will look like. For now Batla House has the edge. It looks relevant and powerful, robust and gripping. I can’t wait to see what the film will be like.
Watch the trailer for Batla House here: