“Force” is a perfect example of the “tough guy genre” that has become prominent in contemporary Indian cinema. John Abraham portrays Yash, a cop with an iron will and sense of justice. He has no weaknesses. Yes, none at all. He even says this himself throughout the film to anybody he encounters and wants to listen. He is a lone wolf and that is what makes him strong. He is successful in this approach and nothing stands in his way. That is until he meets Maya (Genelia D’Souza) who turns his world upside down. He falls in love, giving him the weak spot he has been avoiding. This is exactly what drug dealer Vishnu (Vidyut Jammwal) needs when seeking revenge against Yash’s team.
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“Force” wants to be a big, badass action film and succeeds for the most part with this, wasn’t it for the romantic part, temporarily taking over. It starts off as a thriller-ish action movie, showing us Yash at his job; punching the baddies and taking names. But after he meets Maya and falls in love, it turns into a romantic one for a good half an hour, complete with music video song sequence, dropping the atmosphere it created in the preceding part. It is a good thing for developing the characters’ feelings for one another but it does take us out of the film we sat down to watch: a gritty war against the drug dealers. It is a weakness and makes it all feel a bit messy. It didn’t stop the production from becoming a big hit, spawning a sequel that was released in 2016.
Unfortunately, this messy vibe also applies a bit to the action scenes. The film was released in 2011 when a lot of action movies were still influenced by the American Jason Bourne franchise. So expect lots of shaky camera style action glued together with fast cuts. It results in the editing being all over the place at times, and you have to look closely to follow what is going on. The action doesn’t fall short in entertaining but it could arguably have been better if the cameramen had taken a step back and the editor had slowed down a bit on the cutting.
John Abraham is an imposing leading man. He is a bit stiff here and there but he has the aura of a strong badass cop who prefers to keep quiet and let his actions speak for him. The film also introduced the world to model-turned-actor Vidyut Jammwal (who would go on to become an action hero in his own right in 2013’s “Commando” and its sequel), playing his villain role very evil and without any mercy. The main female role is for Genelia D’Souza, who plays her character very energetically and is a ray of sunshine in the film’s grittiness as she tries to break through Yash’s defenses. The cast’s acting isn’t very outstanding in any way, and it suffers a bit from being melodramatic at times, but it is good enough to carry the story.
“Force” might be a bit messy and melodramatic but I wouldn’t say it is all bad. It has its enjoyable moments and doesn’t fail to deliver some good popcorn fun. One of my favorite lines is from Yash’s pep talk to his team right before an action scene, which goes something like: “Either there is going to be some awesome action tonight, or nothing at all. If it doesn’t happen, forgive me. If it does, enjoy the action!” This kind of sums up how I felt about the movie while watching it, and it might be the best advice I can give to someone who feels like seeing it.