State Of Siege: Temple Attack – Movie Review
Directed by Ken Ghosh, State of Siege: Temple Attack released today. The film fictionalizes a hostage rescue mission during the 2002 terror attack on Swaminarayan Akshardham Temple located in Ahmedabad, starring Akshaye Khanna. Though the movie opens with a disclaimer – No resemblance to any events or persons, living or dead but just 30 mins into the film and you instantly know which terrorist attack it is based on.
Well, we slightly understand why Ken Ghosh didn’t want to put it out loud and clear about the subject of the movie, but the Krishna Dham Temple attack shown in the State of Siege was so fictionalized that it failed to create the actual impact. For instance, it was reported that as many as 30 civilians were struck down by the terrorist during the September 2002 attack on Akshardham Temple in Gandhinagar, but the number shown was apparently too low to make an impact, and the makers took an insensitive decision to up the death count all by themselves.
The film begins on a promising note with picturesque hills of Jammu & Kashmir with some tremendous atmospheric sound design, and we are introduced to Major Hanut Singh (Akshaye Khanna), who is on a mission to extract a minister’s kidnapped daughter. However, just as we enter into the Gujarat arena, State of Siege start falling flat, and the narrative starts being too familiar, or so to say, the director tries to play the ball on safe ground! Though Akshaye Khanna is undoubtedly a talented actor, it seems like he is trapped in a script that has little to no room for vivid character development. Khanna is the only character that tries to put all his efforts to portray an underwritten character alive.
The State of Siege: Temple Attack deals with a controversial topic – A terrorist attack, but the recreation doesn’t look menacing enough to send shivers down your spines. The killings, the firings, and people in a desperate bid to save themselves, all these action sequences failed to make the State of Siege an edge of the seat thriller, for which you initially signed up for. The film falls into the pit of belligerent posturing and fails to show how several humans lose their lives amid sectarian conflict. Well, when it comes to the State of Siege – it’s the dispassionate storytelling and monotony that wins!
State of Siege: Temple Attack is streaming on ZEE5.