A Wednesday — a thriller with a difference

September 5, 2008

A film that lasts under two hours is a rarity in Bollywood. And when the film pits an anonymous caller against Mumbai police, curiosity is aroused.

A WednesdayNeeraj Pandey’s film “A Wednesday” starts promisingly with staccato shots of a man placing a bag at a railway terminus and in the washroom of a police station.

He then proceeds to the roof of a building under construction, where he has set up a desk with a computer and television.

The man calls the police commissioner, played by Anupam Kher, and warns of bombs going off in the city if his demands are not met.

That sets the tone for the rest of the film, one with the potential of being a tight, edge-of-the-seat thriller.

However, the action doesn’t have an urgency and there is none of the biting-your-nails suspense you expect from a thriller.

A WednesdayKher relies on two officers played by Jimmy Sheirgill and Aamir Bashir, young men of totally different temperaments, to help him in this mission.

To be honest, they don’t do much, except follow the unknown caller’s orders. Efforts to trace the caller and the bombs look quite amateurish with words like Interpol and Al Qaeda used carelessly without context.

The film doesn’t drag for too long though and the climax almost creeps up on the viewer. The last ten minutes of the film make up for many of its flaws, mainly because the director introduces a twist one doesn’t really expect.

Naseeruddin Shah as the anonymous caller (his name is never revealed) is excellent. He is restrained and yet angry and helpless, all at once. Anupam Kher also proves why he has lasted so long in the industry but I can’t help feeling his role could have been better etched.

Through the role of a television reporter, played by Deepal Shaw, the director also makes a comment on the media and its role during a crisis

“A Wednesday” is not the best of films, but it’s definitely worth a watch because it tries to be different.


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Watch this movie to see how great an actor Naseeruddin Shah is and how nasal, whiny and irritating a representative of the media fraternity can sound. Deepal Shaw must limit herself to music videos, i seriously wish that she reads this comment and gets a voice-job done.

Posted by Swarup | Report as abusive

A Wednesday is slick, the focus is more on the working of the mind, of people good, bad, those to take on responsibility or shirk them, the honest and the corrupt.

Disagree with the author, feel the pace is pretty decent. The art direction is at time amateurish (catch a top cop whispering secret stuff into his phone next to his sentry!) but the movie retains the viewer’s attention. Naseer and Kher make sure it is a welcome escape from the usual trash produced by the Hindi film industry with a copied name!

Posted by Ananth | Report as abusive

Poor reviewer or should I say corrupt reviewer… The film is such a best peice a bollywood can have… There is nothing wrong in the movie plot, I dont know why the reviewer is finding it faulty.. May be its time of her to quit the job find something else where she will not misguide the people…

I read her review on Tahaan… I found both the movies good and recommend everyone to watch both of them… Its only because of handful of “Shilpa”s (reviewer) that people are misguided and they are forced not to watch movies like “A Wednesday” but are forced to watch all those SRK shits….

Posted by sam | Report as abusive

Amen to Sam.

Posted by Raj G | Report as abusive

Bad review..
Author should watch more good movies(and read good reviews) before trying to write a review again on anything..

Posted by gopi | Report as abusive

I go with what sam said.
this movie is one of an excellent and original piece, bollywood can ever get.
look i have seen more than 800 movies and i think you should support this movie if u r movie lover and not srk lover(but you should watch his SWADES). reviewer is poor in movies or of poor taste. i definitely know that she will be watching Ra-one. don’t listen to her.

Posted by xguy | Report as abusive