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Score 100 Review – Movies Rediff.com

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Score 100 Review – Movies Rediff.com

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Like a thriller Dial 100 too passive to convey the urgency or danger of instability at large, says Sukanya Verma.

Dial 100 seems less of a thriller than an answer to the frequently asked question, “What is it about?”

The film unfolding before us has more the brevity of the synopsis than the structure of the script, as if roughly describing the scheme, but omitting all the juicy details.

It’s a shame, because writer/director Rencil D’Silva’s idea starts out exciting, but can neither handle the nerve impulse nor deliver on the promise of its atmospheric mood, leaving its perfectly capable cast undermined.

Torrential rains in Mumbai set the backdrop for this grim midnight story when a police officer (Manoj Bajpayee) working from the emergency dispatcher receives a phone call from an anxious stranger (Nina Gupta) suspected of committing suicide.

In an earlier phone conversation with his uptight wife (Sakshi Tanwar), we sense a looming problem caused by their troubled teenage son (horribly tame Swar Kumble) and his wayward behavior.

As the identity of the caller is gradually revealed, it becomes clear that the policeman and his family are in real danger for reasons that, unfortunately, are all too easy to guess.

Between a cop’s erratic attempts to save them from danger and a vindictive woman’s enigmatic motives, Dial 100the pace drops sharply to focus on technical glitches in the control room causing a delay in locating the caller.

D’Silva is referring to the pertinent remark about privilege, parenting, middle-class woes, apathy and its unnecessary existence, as opposed to preferential treatment of powerful people based on social hierarchy. But his runaway nature has no emotional impact.

As a thriller too Dial 100 too passive to convey the urgency or danger of instability at large.

The characters offer an uncharacteristically controlled response to bizarre situations thanks to the stilted setting and running time of less than two hours.

It’s also a surprisingly dry film considering the extent of the damage caused by the supposed bad weather.

Since there isn’t much going on in terms of tension or intrigue, even the actors struggle to rise above the issue. Nina Gupta starts out awfully dark, but the film can’t match her neurotic tone.

It doesn’t help that she goes missing for a good chunk and reappears vacillating between vendetta and vulnerability.

A solid actor for all seasons, Manoj Bajpayee displays his usual seriousness but ends up feeling lost due to an underwritten character.

Very irresistible, Sakshi Tanwar is the only one who seems to have a good understanding of the guilt and regret of her role.

Gloomy and inert Dial 100 never causes a storm, which promises inside or outside.

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Rediff Rating:

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