A few years ago, Producer Anjum Rizvi backed an unknown talent, writer director Neeraj Pandey, with a film called A-Wednesday. A great critical success that fared well at the cash counter too, Rizvi now attempts a repeat. Enthused by that daring - and successful – leap of faith, his latest offering is John Day directed and written by newbie Ahishor Solomon... and surely he was hoping for an encore.
No harm in hoping. The casting of the great but elusive actor’s actor Naseer Shah & his protégé, the intense Randeep Hooda in the psycho-thriller, augured well. Unfortunately, two things screwed his plans: One, the director-writer’s brazen lift of plots, scenes & dialogues from the Spanish film Box 507, that played out in a far superior fashion. Two, his weird, confused & convoluted handling of the entire narrative about an honest Bank Manager’s quest to find out the truth behind his daughter’s death in a fire, that seemed but was not an accident. The violence is overt and more sickening than sexy, doing nothing to take the plot forward. The great Naseer Shah is totally wasted in a silly role with orange hair and Hooda over-the-top with snarls, dirty looks & fists of fury is tiresome. As for the females, Elena Kazan & Shernaz Patel, eminently forgettable!
JD is a great opportunity lost, because to get Shah & Hooda in the same frame could constitute great drama and super, red-hot histrionics for lovers of good performances. Anyway, another time, another day, I guess …!