Nikhil Advani's D-Day trailer looked interesting to most but the film hasn't delivered, for many reviewers. Critics feel that the film has a grand script and apt casting but sadly an unsatisfactory result.
Advani has returned after Patiala House, with a much serious cinema and managed to do a decent job of it. Just that, the film has loopholes which can't be ignored. Having said that, it still deserves a watch. Read on to know what the critics have to say.
Praising the realistic character of Dawood Ibrahim played by Rishi Kapoor, Mayank Shekhar says, "For once, the don isn’t a glorified lord of the street or benevolent king of an international syndicate. He is what he is supposed to be: a despicable criminal, under the protection of the Pakistani state. Hiding like a coward inside a house frustrates him no end. He wants to hang out at a party in a hotel to celebrate his son’s wedding."
That sounds like a nuanced depiction of dreaded D.
Taran Adarsh of Bollywood Hungama appreciates how the director has dealt with the underworld theme. "What makes D-DAY relevant and relatable is the fact that Nikhil borrows from real-life headlines/occurrences and gives it a new spin altogether, interpreting the story his way. The basic premise of the film - RAW agents being assigned the task of bringing back the fugitive crime lord back to India - evokes tremendous curiosity, but at the same time, Nikhil knows that since the subject matter is sensitive and volatile, it ought to be tackled with extreme... caution."
However, the characters and the sequences work well for the reviewers; it's really the execution that bothers them. Deepanjana Pal of Firstpost is not happy: "From its trailer, D-Day appears to be the desi lovechild born out of a threesome made up of Zero Dark Thirty, Munich and James Bond. There is however a different film whose title it could have borrowed: Clueless. The film begins as a thriller, wanders into heartbreak, gets stuck on revenge, takes a sharp wrong turn with an outlandish twist and ends in no man’s land".
Mayank Shekhar too is not too fond of the way D-Day takes a turn in the second-half. "He looks in total control initially. The songs somewhat get weaved in organically as the narrative remains within the realm of a realistic procedural picture. Minor comparisons to Katherine Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty, Michael Winterbottom’s A Mighty Heart— both manhunts set in Pakistan— may not be fully out of place. At some point however, as melodrama takes over and things inevitably veer towards what Bollywood reviewers call the “curse of the second half” (and this film could’ve done without a second half altogether), you wonder why this wasn’t a desi “Rambo” to begin with".
On the other hand, there are reviewers who want you to not focus so much on the flaws and give this film a shot. Here's what they're saying:
Saibal Chaterjee of NDTV: "D-Day is replete with such unusual touches. It is another matter that all of them do not eventually come together to make a cohesive whole. Yet, for all its flaws, this is a film good enough to merit a trip to the multiplex".
Paloma Sharma of Rediff.com calls it a dream come true: "D-Day is what people like me wait Friday after Friday for. It does what it needs to and does not preach but leaves an impact strong enough to make you ask questions. It manages to bring out patriotism in you without the theatrics".
D-Day then is for non-nitpickers.