- 12 Oct - 18 Oct, 2019
- 24 Aug - 30 Aug, 2019
On 13th September 2008, serial blasts shook the city of Delhi killing 26 people and injuring over 100. A week later, on the morning of 19th September 2008, a narrow bylane in Delhi’s Jamia Nagar, was rattled by the sounds of gunfire exchanges. Officially known as Operation Batla House, this was Delhi Police Special Cell’s shoot out with the alleged terrorists responsible for the Delhi blasts holed up in a flat, in the now infamous Batla House. This is perhaps one of the most controversial chapters of the Delhi Police as several questions were raised on the arrests and killings, including that of martyred encounter specialist and Delhi Police inspector Mohan Chand Sharma. The operation was spearheaded by then ACP and now DCP Sanjeev Kumar Yadav.
Batla House, the film is a fictionalised account of the operation and the controversies that followed.
Told through the eyes of an upright ACP, Sanjay Kumar (John Abraham), Nikkhil Advani’s Batla House attempts to balance out the narrative without taking any apparent sides. And yet packs in the right dose of patriotism with the story of an honest ACP at its center. Paced as a thriller, for most part the film stays true to the genre. Batla House plays out as a taut film with the tension entwined throughout, leaving you with knots in the stomach. The brilliantly choreographed action and chase sequences ensure several edge of the seat moments. Where Batla House falters is in the second half, when the proceedings slacken with the court room drama slowing it down further. Despite some clap worthy dialogues making it there. And some of the complexities and nuances are filtered down. Nora Fatehi’s dance number seems a force fit in an otherwise grim narrative, though her character is weaved in well.
But there is no doubt this is John Abraham’s film all the way, he is well cast in the role of a committed ACP, who is a man of few words, and arguably gives his career’s best so far. Even his strained relationship with his wife Nandita (Mrunal Thakur) and his internal angst are etched out effectively.