Review - A Wednesday: A no-frills, engaging thriller
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A city under seize. 5 bombs threatening to go off. The administration, in turn, turning all its resources up-side-down. We've seen this and a lot more in Hollywood. But, when you take this basic plot, add some very basic action to it, cast the most wonderful cast you could have, you have me arrested - not wanting to blink once.
I like to observe how the titles of a movie are done, because in a way, it’s a measure of how much respect the decision makers have for their crew. Many a time there's so much noise and glitter during the titles that you are forced to not read the opening credits. So, when half of A Wednesday's titles are plain white text on black background with zero sound, I am hooked.
There's one scene where the person threatening to set-off bombs is very close to being caught. At that point, I was wondering how cool it'd be if he's actually caught at this point, wonder how the story will move on. And at the very same time, I was sincerely hoping that he escapes. Just in case, his capture would mean that the movie is close to its end. I hadn't even realized that it's not even interval yet, that's how much I was enjoying the thrill and the build-up.
While introducing its characters to us, A Wednesday also takes digs at the influence of "stars" in our film industry, gender bias in our society, "creation" of news by our media, and the general attitude of our law and order officials. Along the way, it comments on the impotency of our law enforcement department (though, it was refreshing to see a room full of committed police officers). And as a final bang, very smartly, the plot uses the same impotency to make right right.
Just less than 24 hours ago, I was applauding a director's effort to give Anupam Kher a non-loud, meaningful role. And here we have a movie which has him as the protagonist. Sure, it doesn't require him to go through the whole range of expressions an actor - particularly this one - is capable of. But what it gives him back is our - his audience's - respect. What can I say about Naseeruddin Shah - I was just left speechless by his character's confidence and angst, whether ill-placed or not. Even though, thrillers are not necessarily the best genre to display acting prowess.
Anupam Kher and Jimmy Shergill are what I call the soft faces in the film fraternity. However, stern their characters, you expect them to soften up sooner or later. But they have such strong attitudes here, that when you see Anupam Kher and even Jimmy beat someone up, you don't question it. Both the writing and the performances complement each other.
The smaller side characters also have their charm. Like, the young self-made hacker was cute. Yep! I actually found a geek adorable. Speaking of which, except for the amusing graphics on the screen, the other technical talk didn’t sound like mumbo-jumbo.
The melodramatic background score used to create suspense and the overdramatic slo-mo stylization of Naseeruddin Shah's character are about the only things that irritated me. From the tone of the movie otherwise, especially the muted titles, I got the feel that this excessive drama was not based on creative decisions from the heart but the director resorted to them because he was supposed to. Surprisingly though, the speech in the climax didn't get tiringly preachy. That's mostly because the motivations sounded novel yet believable.
Anupam Kher and Naseerudin Shah - truly a pleasure to see you on the screen together, sirs! That too in a thriller...
- meeta, a part of the audience
- Violence: A good amount of rather brash fist fights.
- Sexual content: None
- Concept: It's about the need to deal with terrorism and provides one rather shocking, ethically-questionable solution.
A Wednesday - Movie Details
- Official Sites: Website Wikipedia IMDB
- Banner: UTV Motion Pictures
- Producer: Ronnie Screwwala, Shital Bhatia, Anjum Rizvi
- Director: Neeraj Pandey
- Lead Cast: Anupam Kher, Naseeruddin Shah, Jimmy Sheirgill, Aamir Bashir
- Supporting Cast: Priya Singh, Parth, Alok Narula, Virendra Saxena, Deepal Shaw
- Story: Neeraj Pandey
- Screenplay: Neeraj Pandey
- Cinematography: Fuwad Khan, Fuwad Khan
- Editor: Shree Narayan Singh
- Background Score: Sanjoy Chowdhury
- Action Choreography: Sham Kaushal
- Music Director: Sanjay Chowdhury
- Running time: 120 minutes
- Reviewer: meeta
- Language: Hindi
- Country: India
- Genres: Social, Terrorism, Thriller