Will India’s Most Wanted Live Up To Expectations?

India’s Most Wanted is an upcoming film. Journalist and film writer, Subhash K. Jha weighs in if it will be as impactful as the producers expect
Will India’s Most Wanted Live Up To Expectations?
Poster for India's Most Wanted

I really don’t know who India’s Most Wanted is. I thought it was Shah Rukh Khan. But I am not sure anymore. And if we’re talking legalese, then too it’s hard to choose between Mallaya and Kasab.

So when the self-important trailer of Rajkumar Gupta’s India’s Most Wanted tells us that 5- member self-appointed anti-terror squad (which looks like Bihar’s gram panchayat grassroot workers after rolling a few grass joints) is out to apprehend India’s Osama, then I am not impressed.

A film on terrorism to work as a film, must cut to the chase, in more ways than one. The trailer offers nothing to pull us into it in the way Behzad Khambata’s new anti-terror thriller Blank pulls us in.

Many shots in the trailer are taken in Patna and at one point we see Arjun Kapoor and his squad climbing down Patna’s monument Gol Ghar for no reason at all. No one has nation-saving meetings there, it’s like showing the Golmaal team walking out of the Taj Mahal.

Arjun Kapoor is unexciting, almost bored, in his common-man-on-an-uncommon mission spin. A little more spark in the dialogues, a bit less of that been-there-done-it-before complacence could have helped the trailer keep its head more firmly on the shoulder.

The spoken lines are so stiffly didactic they sound like point blank prattle. Or lines borrowed from YouTube films on anti-terror combat drills.

Tumhara beta paagal ho gaya hai,” barks an angry government official to Arjun Kapoor’s father (no, not Boney Kapoor but Rajesh Verma).

Haan paagal ho gaya. Desh ke liye,” replies Daddy Verma.

Here we must take a break for a 10-second silence in honour of the Demented Desh Bhakt.

As it stands, the trailer is wobbly and unexciting. The absence of women characters from the posters and in the trailer is more an attempt to show how bravely professional the narrative is about its predominantly masculine fight to nab what is repeatedly called ‘India’s Osama.’

Really? It wasn’t enough for our film industry to fawn at the feet of Hollywood by happily crawling on the ground when called ‘Bollywood.' Now we also have to model our terrorists by intentional standards.

Jai Hind.

Watch the trailer of India's Most Wanted here:

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