Inspired by true events, State of Siege: Temple Attack, is an action-thriller movie that premiered on ZEE5. Written by William Borthwick and Simon Fantauzzo, the movie is helmed by Ken Ghosh.
State of Siege: Temple Attack is the movie sequel to the series State of Siege: 26/11. The film is a fictionalized account of the terrorist attack on Gandhinagar’s Akshardham complex that transpired in 2002.
The National Security Guards, who are highly trained, are the focus of the investigation set in the movie. In Kashmir, commando Hanut Singh (Akshaye Khanna) leads a squad to rescue a minister’s daughter. The mission does not proceed as planned, raising questions about Hanut’s competence.
When a group of men raid the Krishna Dham temple in Gujarat and hold its staff and tourists hostage, Hanut gets his chance at atonement, which also brings a hostage scenario into the film’s plot.
Hanut, who is in town as part of the chief minister’s security detail, lands at the temple and begins firing in defiance of orders, to get his shot at redemption.
Hanut Singh, played by Khanna, is one of just two characters who isn’t written as a one-dimensional entity. When his mission from the opening sequence fails, he has a motive to prove himself in the next tasks.
As the steely senior soldier who is mocked by a subordinate but eventually earns his respect, Khanna gives a stand-out performance.
Despite the appearance of numerous other NSG members such as Gautam Rode, Vivek Dahiya, and Parvin Dabas, the honours go to Akshaye Khanna’s Hanut.
With an opening scene set in the beautiful highlands of the Kupwara District in J&K, near a make-believe Indo-Pak border, State of Siege starts on a promising note.
Through tensely planned action sequences, the film attempts for maximum nerve-wracking moments. The commandos and their enemies are evenly matched and motivated, as evidenced by frequent intercutting. The frantic background music helps induce a nerve-wracking feeling in the audience.
The sequences feature some fantastic graphics, evocative sound design, and a slow-burning tempo that slowly rises as the stakes climb.
When the scene goes to the Gujarat temple, the cinematography and acting suffer. Characters are made acquainted with the possibility of being apprehended or murdered.
By bringing some well-intentioned Muslims and a disloyal Hindu into the mix, Ghosh attempts to bring more balance to the film. However, the attempt is so obvious that it leaves you feeling, even more, let down. It should have been executed with more subtlety.
State of Siege: Temple Attack might have been a great thriller if it hadn’t been marketed as a reenactment of the 2002 Akshardham terror attack.
Watch the movie for its great graphics and strong performance from Khanna.