What is it with our filmmakers making frame-by-frame remakes of Hollywood films? It isn’t as though we lack ideas or even talent. Knock Out is basically a copy of Phone Booth and there is no two way about it. Not really sure what Mani Shankar, director to the film was thinking, but he has basically made a film that didn’t do too well in the west but is totally inapplicable to 2010; a day and age where modern technology runs the world and PCO’s are a thing of the past. Anyhow, somehow he managed to bag Sanjay Dutt, Irrfan Khan and Kangna Ranaut to be a part of the film and before you knew it, Knock Out was out and about ready to create mayhem.
An unknown man (Irrfan Khan) finds himself in complete shambles when he is asked to enter a phone booth but not pick up any phones. For some odd reason he agrees. The phone then rings and he finds himself picking up the phone and has basically been taken hostage by a banker (Sanjay Dutt). The media and police get involved in this whirlwind and then begins the film. Or something along those lines at least.
Knock Out is so half-baked, that it is virtually impossible to understand or even write the plot. As a director Mani Shankar has totally lost the plot. Granted it is a copy but in all honesty, it needed to have more than Phone Booth had in order for it to have any impact. And because of this, it falls flat. The characters in the film themselves look confused and lost. It seems like they themselves are unsure as to why a film is being based on a PCO phone when everyone has mobile phones in this day and age. A film that is deemed a thriller all of a sudden becomes patriotic and filled with national pride which is even more confusing. Not only are you left wondering what on earth is happening but feel the need to walk out.
Sanjay Dutt is the only reason to watch Knock Out. His performance is worth it because he is the only actor that doesn’t ham or fake his role. In fact, he depicts the most real character in a film. Irrfan Khan disappoints in Knock Out. He hams, screams, shouts, hollers and over acts like no other. Kangna Ranaut is a waste of time in this film. Her role is hardly understood within the film let alone applicable to Knock Out. And lastly, we see Apoorva Lakhia debuts in a film and makes no mark.
Yes, you are knocked out with Knock Out; knocked out of your sense and logic. It screams useless and basically, KO can go down as one of 2010’s dumbest films.