Directed by Dnyanesh Zoting, Collar Bomb is Jimmy Shergill’s latest Bollywood release. Starring Asha Negi and Rajshri Deshpande, the trailer of this film promised a riveting watch. However, that expectation hasn’t really been met with the film.
Jimmy Shergill plays Manoj Hesi, the SHO of Sanawar, who is hiding a secret from a case that still haunts him. Also, Shergill’s stoic portrayal of the character and needlessly dramatic dialogue leaves no doubt about his ‘dark past’. So, there’s no missing it.
The film tries to build a mysterious vibe from the beginning, but the buildup is hammy and confusing. Hesi and his son attend a memorial ceremony at St George School in Sanawar, Himachal, with the hope that Hesi’s son too will study at the prestigious school. The ceremony is a memorial for a student who went missing and was found dead under Hesi’s watch. As some predictable drama unfolds at the ceremony, a hostage crisis suddenly erupts with a suicide bomber threatening to blow up the school. And as usual, the terrorist is a salwar kameez-clad, kohl-eyed Muslim man speaking in Urdu. There was really no need to pander to this horrific, harmful stereotype, even if it is just for the sake of imagery. The bomber’s broken speech, however, is the first clue that not everything is as it seems.
Manoj Hesi, one of the hostages, is told to go from task to task, like a game show, to stop the bomb from exploding. At one point, he’s just collecting his own hostages but that’s all part of the story, we’re told. The writers try to make the story look convoluted but what we see on the screen is just chaos. When the story finally unravels, it’s quite disappointing because, if you are a fan of the mystery-thriller genre, you would’ve figured out the secret way before the main characters do. Even if you’ve watched a mystery thriller at some point, you’ll know where the film is headed. The story is far too simplistic to hold the audience’s interest through the course of the film. Perhaps if the script had been tightened to make this film just about an hour long, it could’ve been gripping.
The lack of logic and basic common sense is apparent in far too many instances in this film. From the illogical murder scenes where a person dies within seconds of a cut to a political angle that is just abandoned mid-film, it feels like several scenes were written in just to increase the run-time of Collar Bomb.
The film tries to make up for all its flaws in the end with a weak explanation, but it’s just not enough to recover. Watch it to test your mystery solving skills; make it a game of finding the missing pieces of the puzzle yourself.
Collar Bomb is now streaming on Disney+ Hotstar.