Sanjay Dutt plays a new age lone ranger who has the latest weapons and gadgets at his fingertips, and is a man who trusts and depends on no one. Working alone, he effortlessly uses his wit, his skills at hand-to-hand combat, and his love for stealth technology, to manipulate and trap his elusive target. The target, played by ...more
Sanjay Dutt plays a new age lone ranger who has the latest weapons and gadgets at his fingertips, and is a man who trusts and depends on no one. Working alone, he effortlessly uses his wit, his skills at hand-to-hand combat, and his love for stealth technology, to manipulate and trap his elusive target. The target, played by Irrfan, is a street-smart investment banker who has made his way to the upper echelons of power. A man who unwittingly holds the key to Indias destiny. less
“A boring film. A one time watch on TV, if at all.”
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The Joel Schumacher directed 'Phone Booth' was a taut thriller utilizing a restrictive environment to the fullest. The movie was rife with tension and thinly laced with some dark humor, all of which seems to have been overlooked completely by Mani Shankar who takes writing as well as directing duties on 'Knock Out'.
Bacchu Bhai/ Tony Khosla (Irrfan) is a money-launderer for high profile politicians like Bapu (Gulshan Grover). To avoid a trace or some stupid reason never properly explained he chooses to get payment details via a public payphone located bang in the middle of the road in the nicest looking phone booth this side of the world. However he receives a call while in the phone booth from a not-so-mysterious stranger (Sanjay Dutt) who informs him that unless he confesses all his wrongdoings publicly he will be shot. The cops and media follow suit soon and it turns into one large circus. So what is the real intention of the sniper? Who is he? Why is Irrfan in the absurd wig? Who hired Kangana Ranaut as a reporter? Or why is she dressed like a model at a live crime scene? All questions are not answered but the last three troubled me to no end.
Mani Shankar takes the premise of 'Phone Booth' copies a few scenes and then adds his own brand of inferior ingredients. His creation is such, that for their own safety 20th Century Fox or the makers of 'Phone Booth' should try and avoid even trying to associate themselves with it. The script attempts to expose the money laundering and "Benaami" accounts that Indian politicians open in foreign tax havens. The intention cant be doubted but the execution is painful and tacky to the core. Patriotism is the veil that the film-makers hope would blind viewers to a poorly paced and illogically plotted movie. The movies sole attempt at some ill-timed humor comes in the form of Irrfan Khan being forced to dance in the middle of street with onlookers cheering him on.
Irrfan Khan's character undergoes a drastic character change much like Colin Farrell's did in the original. However Irrfan Khan is such a creep in this flick that it would have been better if Sanjay Dutt would shoot him in the first ten minutes and get on with it. I had no desire to see him live another day nor did I find his sudden transformation believable. Here is a guy who date-rapes young women & also moonlights as a high-class pimp for politicians but then suddenly feels pangs of guilt for stashing away money earned from prostitution. Even the whole angle about his life being threatened by a sniper barely ring true simply because Sanjay Dutt is not menacing enough, unlike the unseen Keifer Sutherland in 'Phone Booth'.
The action sequences amount to nothing more than filler and were probably added to liven up the proceedings once the makers realized that the character interactions were as bland as tofu. The action scenes also allow for some outrageous technology that I doubt even our National Intelligence agencies have, forget the local 'paandus'. Plus with the number of hired killers running around in gaudy gym clothes waving guns around like it was Diwali, you'd seriously start wondering about the state of security in the movie.
If Irrfan Khan deserves an award for the most ridiculous wig in the movie, Kangana Ranaut should be lauded in her efforts to get the extras in the film noticed. Her acting is so atrocious that the extras that play other reporters look like real-life professionals in spite of having a combined screen time of less than a minute. Sanjay Dutt sleepwalks to the bank collecting yet another paycheck. Sushant Singh is the sole saving grace in terms of acting as a sympathetic cop.
'Knock Out' is this week's finest sleeping pill; those watching it will be knocked out in no time. My advice to you is simple; rent a DVD of 'Phone Booth'.