If coal is an important fuel of our Industrial development, Koyelaanchal (coal belt of India) brings to light the explosive story of the people who have kept our precious fuel station at ransom for centuries. Calling these people coal mafia would be an understatement. Koyelaanchal unveils itself through Saryu Bhan Singh (Vino...more
If coal is an important fuel of our Industrial development, Koyelaanchal (coal belt of India) brings to light the explosive story of the people who have kept our precious fuel station at ransom for centuries. Calling these people coal mafia would be an understatement. Koyelaanchal unveils itself through Saryu Bhan Singh (Vinod Khanna), an ex-owner turned Mafioso of the region, who through his sheer brutality & blatant defiance of law of the land, forces the people & the authorities to acknowledge him as their ‘maalik’. Any protest, any voice of dissent against him is dealt with spine chilling violence of epic proportions. less
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There is a scene in Koyelaanchal where a muscled brute full of anger hangs another man with a dupatta. We see numerous reaction shots of people with their mouths open. Not just one person, but at least 10. That was me, throughout the film.
There are a bunch of scenes where a child keeps crying out loud. The person on the receiving end is the dupatta hangman. He is so unimaginably annoyed he has no idea what to do. For no discernable reason, several other crying kids are shown and the volume on the soundtrack reaches This Is Spinal Tap levels. The duppatta hangman runs out and breaks some coal stuff and shouts out loud. That, my faithful readers, was also me throughout the film.
Recently there have been films like Gangs of Wasseypur (2012) and Gunday (2014), which have been set around the coal industry. Gangs of Wasseypur and Kala Patthar (1979) are classics of the sub-genre but I thought Gunday was terrible. Little did I know making something worse was possible.
I don’t want to waste your precious time and I’d like to quickly run over the plot (which seems already run over by a bulldozer). Vinod Khanna plays Saryu Bhan Singh who rules the Jharkhand district. He is the don of coal mafia and has a henchman who will do anything for him, which means he kills people. This happens to be the dupatta hangman (!). Sunil Shetty is Nisheeth Kumar, the good guy who wishes to overthrow Singh and stop his dirty evil-doings. Dupatta hangman goes to injure (but not kill) Kumar and his wife. Lo and behold, he unknowingly kidnaps their child. Now the rest of the film is about this brutish dupatta hangman discovering he is a softy wofty thanks to the child and Kumar and Singh trying to make sense of the plot.
I feel bad for a veteran like Vinod Khanna. Sunil Shetty has always been badly used by Bollywood, so no surprise there. The dupatta hangman is played by the curiously named Vipinno, who is given a god-like status by the end of the film that it made me wonder if he was the son of the director or the producer.
There are heavy handed-dialogues everywhere. The acting is always hammy. The background music is a bombardment of noises including whiplashes (in case you forgot your were getting tortured). There a dozen shootouts for no reason whatsoever. There is one egregiously bad TV commercial in the film, which tries so hard to be funny but is perhaps one of the worst audio-visual crapolas I have ever been subjected to. To top this, there is an item song with cross-dressing men in sarees.
There is no reason why films like Koyelaanchal should be seen unless you are being paid to do it. Or getting something in return. Most films give you something to take back with you, films like Koyelaanchal take away your patience, calmness and general sanity away for two hours. I look at them as a self-evaluative test and see myself improving. Have to extract something positive, right?
In case I didn’t say it clearly enough before, Koyelaanchal is excruciatingly bad.