NH10 review – A tale of terror around the National Capital
NH10 – as the title and the trailers suggest is a road trip thriller – a refreshing genre movie in the stale palette that we are served every Friday by Bollywood. The national highway from New Delhi to Punjab, goes via Haryana – the infamous state with very low sex ratio in the country – the movie highlights it in a very effective way.
The story begins with an urban couple Arjun(Neil Bhoopalam) and Meera(Anushka Sharma), chatting on the way to a party through Gurgaon. You don’t see their faces but you see the glittering night lights in the ‘always on’ world of today’s corporate high rises.
In the midst of the party Meera has to step out for the inevitable product launch critical issue (we can relate). And that’s what is the NCR nightmare for any girl, driving in Gurgaon alone in the night, she has an encounter with some miscreants in bike that she escapes narrowly.
The couple reports this to the police and as usual police asks the victims for clues etc. The officer even compares the city to a growing child and suggests them to apply for a gun. (we are unable to protect you so please you protect yourself)
The upcoming days are terrifying for Meera as she is unable to forget the incident. So the husband plans a weekend getaway over her birthday to make her feel better.
All is good till they stop over at a dhaba for food, where they find a young couple getting dragged by a group of men, Arjun tries to intervene but is slapped by the antagonist Satbir (Darshan Kumar).
As the group leaves in their car and the couple gets on their own way Arjun is disturbed (read THE MALE EGO is hurt), so as soon as he spots the car he decides to teach them a lesson by showing the gun. He takes them to be simple villagers, who turn out to be ruthless killers, the couple is now witness to the crime and how they are chased around by Satbir and gang in unpopulated ravines is the rest of the fim about.
The chase and the thrilling encounters are all real and you feel the tension. Its real edge of the seat story telling. Director Navdeep Singh has lived up to the expectation as it is his second outing post Manorama: six feet under that was released some eight years back.
Though the last one was very much layered unlike this one which is straight one night thriller adventure, he still has put in so much reference to so many issues regarding women in the society and that too without explicitly preaching.
The background score is fantastically apt and the camera work is intelligent to make the viewer sink the surroundings, full marks to the technicians.
The movie definitely celebrates woman power but the cinematic liberties could have been avoided.
Neil is competent as the urban husband. Darshan is scary as the angry khap society flag bearer.
Deepti Naval is creepy in an unexpected cameo. But the real hero of the movie is producer Anushka Sharma, who steals the show and takes the transformation from an urban terrified woman to a ruthless fighter, with ease.
Not a logical solution to the questions raised but completely entertaining if you love thrillers.
A movie like NH10 should be applauded just to attempt this kind of a subject, but this one has a lot of more to offer.
My recommendation : ZaroorDekho
Director: Navdeep Singh
Running time: 120 minutes
Music composed by: Palash Muchhal