OTTplay Logo
settings icon
profile icon

Kill Review - Who would have thought Karan Johar’s Dharma would serve the goriest Indian film?

Karan Johar, Dharma, gory, and Snowpiercer have been mentioned in the same line in Kill, and for all the correct reasons.

Kill Review - Who would have thought Karan Johar’s Dharma would serve the goriest Indian film?
Kill Movie Review

Last Updated: 08.16 PM, Jul 02, 2024


Kill Movie Review - NSG Commando Amrit Rathod (Lakshya) and his friend NSG Commando Viresh both board a train from a station two hours from Deen Dayal Upadhyay station (former Mughalsarai) to Delhi. Amrit wants to propose to the love of his life, Tulika (Tanya Maniktala), after a dramatic day when she is engaged to someone else. The train is hijacked by dacoits with their leader, Fani (Raghav Juyal), who finds out Tulika’s father is a wealthy influential man and plots to kidnap her family for ransom. But Amrit cannot let this happen and gets on a mission to John Wick his way out of the goriest bloodbath you have seen in decades on the Indian screens.

Kill Movie Review - Analysis:

Imagine a moving Indian train, a hero, a heroine, Karan Johar producing with Dharma banner, Guneet Monga returning on the big screen after her Oscar victory, and Nikhil Nagesh Bhat letting all his intrusive thoughts win; oh yes, there is also the action director of Snowpiercer on board. Sounds so unique yet so risqué, right? The experimenting stage in Hindi cinema seems to have been revived with makers taking casting risks and also investing in stories that are serving a wider range of audience. But the risk is paid off (mostly), and here is a movie that is unapologetically a bloodbath, choreographed to almost perfection and placed in a story that has a clichéd setup but a very rewarding second half that offers a complete edge-of-the-seat ride. Beware, a hammer can randomly aim for your skull from anywhere!

By now, Kill has been screened at almost every major film festival across the world, and the West has applauded the movie that has the Snowpiercer fame action choreographer Se-Yeong Ho on board for the fight choreography alongside his War (Hrithik Roshan & Tiger Shroff) partner Parvez Shaikh. Written by Nikhil Nagesh Bhat alongside Ayesha Syed and directed by Bhat, the film is backed by Karan Johar’s Dharma alongside Guneet Monga’s Sikhya. And whoever thought of attaching the Dharma theme before this one, you are cruel. The idea of Kill is a relentless bloodshed that is so unapologetic that it begins with a man breaking the skull of a police officer. And it is just the beginning. There are elements of hardcore Bollywood, a syntax of the old dacoits, but also the trope that they have updated themselves too. 

Lakshya In Kill
Lakshya In Kill

The story features a couple who want to get married; the setup is clichéd when it comes to their dynamic, but then there is too much innovative blood gore for the Indian audience served ahead, and these cliché moments feel like a breather at times. Kill creates a man and his motivation all on the screen. They enter the train with no mess in mind, but the entry of the dacoits changes everything. No one is holding any bars, on the screen or behind the scenes. While Fani, played by Raghav Juyal, continues to kill people in the most sadistic manner, Nikhil Nagesh Bhat behind the camera and on paper is letting his wildest intrusive thoughts win. He is almost taking Game Of Thrones as his inspiration in killing people. No one is safe, even the hero, because the deaths are so uncertain and unpredictable that you will be left shocked and gasping for air in the interval block.

That brings me to the killers, Kill is also about the dacoits who are the threat to the man who is about to turn John Wick after a tragic death, his motivation. Fani, their boss played by Raghav, is a borderline maniac. Imagine Joker but without makeup born in Heartland India. He cracks jokes and in the next moment skulls and bones with the crackling sound. The actor is a surprise packed; the command over a character so delicate to play because you never know what becomes only a joke and you stop being scary. The actor needs to explore this side so much more. What also updates is how the dacoits function. They now have jammers, their plans are more streamlined. While they had traditional weapons in their hands, they were planning on WhatsApp. The best part is Nikhil Nagesh Bhat looks at them as breathing humans rather than robots who enter combat and die.

Raghav Juyal In Kill
Raghav Juyal In Kill

He shapes them as people who are a family of dacoits. So every time one of them dies, they break down. Cry over his dead body in the moving train. When Amrit goes on a killing spree in a John Wick-esque manner, they are scared of him and you see the fear. There is so much to Kill because of this simple emotional addition because you now even know the humane side of the many dacoits. Kudos to the team for writing their boss as a man who wears a cut-sleeved sweater over a formal shirt and formal pants. Ashish Vidyarthi looks nothing like a leader of a band of dacoits, but he is and he sells it. There is no patch on one eye or a black outfit to scare anyone or a gun in his hands. Rather he doesn't know how a weak Indian Katta (gun) can backfire in the heat of the moment. This is probably the best side of the movie because Nikhil knows they are technically the majority here.

The action direction by Se-yeong Ho and Parvez Shaikh is so interesting in all corners. They are using a moving Indian train for their backdrop. It's a cramped space and the action is to be designed keeping in mind the restriction and lack of resources for the hero. The action holds no bars as said already. Just when you think the gore meter has touched the maximum, they bring something even more gory and you realize it is broken at this point. In a scene, someone hits a hammer in someone's head and then nails the hammer into their skull with a hockey stick, yes. Se-yeong and Parvez with the prosthetic department create a ride for the devil. Because our only room in this world is a train, we are as confined as the people on the overcrowded train. Rafey Mehmood does an exceptional job at creating frames that will make the audience feel the fear and euphoria of it all. Subash Sahoo’s brilliant sound design and Mayur Sharma’s genius set design elevate everything about this movie.

Lakshya is definitely an action hero in the making. While Se-yeong and Parvez choreographed the action in a way that it doesn't look staged, Lakshya takes it a step ahead by making it look very organic. He does not have much dialogue, but he is very good with emotions even without the lack of words. It's a very promising debut for an actor and probably gives him his niche genre even. Tanya Maniktala does justice to what is given to her, but the writing itself ditches her because she is literally the most out-of-touch character in this world. She thinks of romance in a train full of dacoits and a missing sister. The setup around her serves as a breather, but if you look at it minus the rest, it is just a weak plot used as a filler.

Tanya Maniktala and Lakshya In Kill
Tanya Maniktala and Lakshya In Kill

A couple of doubts: When did Indian train toilets become so clean for two people to stand and propose to each other? Why is no one pulling the chains? The dacoits had cut-off chains in only four bogies. The climax is left open to interpretation; tell me what you feel happens after you watch it.

Kill Movie Review - Final Verdict:

Dharma theme misleads you into a movie that has reshaped a genre in Indian cinema and probably for the world too. John Wick director Chad Stahelski is producing the English remake of Kill, which says a lot. Watch it on the big screen if you can bear the violence, but beware and hold your popcorn tub tight and your guts intact.


Kill releases on the big screen in India on July 5, 2024. Stay tuned to OTTplay for more information on this and everything else from the world of streaming and films.

Get the latest updates in your inbox