The Hindi filmmakers have an innate quality to take the best of scripts and turn them into something so increasingly yawn inducing that you can't help but keep looking at your watch for the time to just pass by somehow.
It's about time that filmmakers understand merely ripping international films, stuffing actors with credibility and squashing together some violent scenes with shock value won't guarantee a good film. Ultimately, more than the story it's the execution that comes into consideration. Debutant filmmaker Ahishor Solomon clearly turns a blind eye towards the narrative in John Day.
A Spanish film Box 507 rip off, John Day starts off on an interesting note where a teenager gets killed in an unexpected forest fire while on a surreptitious trip with her boyfriend. You really want to know what happened, how did the fire just break out? But the filmmaker takes you to the story two years later where the grieving parents John (Naseeruddin Shah) and Maria Day (Shernaz Patel) are trying to collect their lives together. But things go awry once again as Maria gets held in house arrest by goons who blackmail John, a bank manager, to let them steal valuables from the bank's vault. It takes John this scathing incident to put two and two together and find a common link between his daughter's death and the bank robbery. There's a massive nexus at play where even the cops including the fierce, bad-ass cop Gautam (Randeep Hooda) is involved. How John starts off on a mission to bust the racket is what the film is all about.
Debutant filmmaker tries really hard to turn John Day into a nerve-wrecking, nail-biting, taut thriller; however, he only manages to create a mood for the dark thriller and ends up presenting a highly shallow content.
The movie is so fragmented with too many characters popping at every 10 minutes of the film that you get confused what exactly was the story after all. In order to do justice to each character and sub-plot, the filmmaker loses the main plot starts convoluting his own film. Moreover, the heavy reliance on gore and violence to give the film an edgy film leaves you squirming in your seats.
The two hour ten minutes film moves at snail's pace and clearly required serious editing to eliminate the scenes which actually held no relevance to the main story whatsoever.
Coming to the acting, I think it's high time both real life mentor-protegee Naseeruddin Shah and Randeep Hooda start looking beyond the common man and serious cop roles. Despite their capabilities for incredible performances it's boring to watch them play characters they have essayed dozens of times in the past.
Foreign beauty Elena Kazan reminds you of Kangna Ranaut the moment she starts speaking but sadly isn't even half as good as the latter in terms of acting. Shernaz Patel gets completely wasted in this film.
Despite potentially appearing to be a great, racy thriller, John Day ends up being a yawn-fest you just want to get over with. Wouldn't miss a thing if you skip this one.