Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


TIFF ’23 Review: Love gives greed a thrashing in ‘KILL’

‘KILL’ is an ultra-violent action picture in which army commandos must takedown dozens of train robbers

A scene from 'KILL'
A scene from 'KILL' courtesy of TIFF
A scene from 'KILL' courtesy of TIFF

‘KILL’ is an ultra-violent action picture in which army commandos must takedown dozens of train robbers before they reach their destination.

Leaving one’s home always presents a risk of encountering some form of criminality, from robbery to careless drivers to terrorism. Emergency services are established and employed to protect the public from such things, and help them when a crime does occur. They are trained to handle high-risk situations and to stop the perpetrators. On a larger scale, military performs a similar task of protection and prevention, but with more rigorous training and typically higher stakes. If one were to find such a person in an ordinary situation turned bad, it’s likely they would take action. In KILL, thieves realize too late they’ve hijacked the wrong train.

Amrit (Laksh Lalwani) and Viresh (Abhishek Chauhan) are best friends and army commandos. After a mission, Amrit returns to the news that his long-time girlfriend Tulika’s (Tanya Maniktala) family have arranged her engagement to someone else. They immediately head to her location, boarding the same train she and her family are taking back to Delhi. Unfortunately, the train is also full of ruthless bandits planning a massive robbery. Unable to sit idly by, Amrit and Viresh attack the thugs. What comes next is a series of battles up and down the cars as both sides are determined the other must not successfully get off the train.

The film begins with a typical Bollywood love story. When Amrit graces the screen, the hero’s theme music announces the role he’ll play in the film. Later, each time Amrit and Tulika look into each other’s eyes, their love song plays over the speakers. They’re both very attractive young adults and their relationship plays an important part in the film. Thus, there’s nothing left to chance, including cheesy expressions of their feelings for each other that illicit snickers from the crowd — but it’s also clear he has something to fight for when it comes time.

The first act is just filler for the main event — the action sequences. The thieves carry various weapons, including knives, sickles, hammers, crowbars and anything else that can be wielded in a tight space. Meanwhile, our heroic commandos have nothing but their bodies and skills, yet they’re able to repeatedly overpower their opponents. That said, they are also knocked down and out more than is usual in this type of movie, basically taking these moments of unconsciousness as breathers to reenergize before the next bout. There are also two distinct approaches to the fights: one that means detaining the criminal alive, and a much more brutal method that involves some cringe-worthy blows that leave no man alive.

This ultra-violent picture is light on story, but delivers in the action department as the motivated protagonist leaves a trail of mutilated bodies inside and outside the train. Notably, the camerawork does well to capture the brawls, showing the grisly strikes on screen and not relying on quick edits to simulate powerful clashes. The result is rousing and will keep viewers glued to the screen so they don’t miss a beat(ing).

KILL had its world premiere in the Midnight Madness programme at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Read other reviews from the festival.

Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat
Starring: Laksh Lalwani, Raghav Juyal and Tanya Maniktala

Avatar photo
Written By

Sarah Gopaul is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for film news, a member of the Online Film Critics Society and a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer-approved critic.

You may also like:


Evolve Bank has disclosed a ransomware attack from infamous ransomware gang, LockBit.


Charoen Krung Thai is a Thai restaurant in the Midtown East neighborhood of Manhattan.


Singer-songwriter Bonnie McKee chatted about her pop album "Hot City."


The bystander killed in the attempted assassination of former president Donald Trump has been identified as Corey Comperatore, who died shielding his family, according...