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Warning review: Ambitious, long-winding, bloody saga of vengeance

Release Date: 19 Nov 2021

Cinestaan Rating

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Sukhpreet Kahlon

Prince Kanwal Jit Singh shines in this otherwise unimpressive film which lacks depth and is hobbled by inconsistent performances.

Written and produced by Gippy Grewal, the Punjabi-language action feature Warning stars Grewal, Prince Kanwal Jit Singh aka Prince KJ, Dheeraj Kumar and Mahabir Bhullar.

Directed by Amar Hundal, the film begins with Paramjeet (Prince KJ) burning his medals and mark sheets on his father’s funeral pyre. He desperately wants a job and the sarpanch leads him straight to a gangster. In a long-neglected state like Punjab, they are the only ones able to provide employment to young men, a strong comment on governmental apathy.

Paramjeet becomes Pamma and although he is a bumbling simpleton, he finds an opportunity to make something of himself and takes it. He kills a local gangster and thereby begin a circle of vengeance with the gangster’s son Shinda (Dheeraj Kumar) swearing to avenge his father’s death.

The film takes a long detour into Shinda and his story, which is tedious, mainly as the cycle of violence is repetitive and Dheeraj Kumar's performance is inadequate. There is the usual nexus of politicians, gangsters and the police where gangsters dictate the law of the land, abductions and murders with impunity, and a lot of show of masculinity through it all.

Warning was originally conceptualized as a web-series and the long-winding story with its subplots is evidence that it was planned in a longer format. Although the film is ambitious in scope, hoping to create a more complex story of violence and criminality, the writing lacks depth and the performances are inconsistent.

Increasingly, gratuitous violence and sex have been making their way into web-series and one suspects this was among the motivations for the graphic, violent scenes in the film. The climax, for example, is needlessly bloody and extended. Grewal makes a cameo appearance towards the end as a contract killer named Geja and the film ends with ‘to be continued’, no doubt continuing the saga of Geja and Pamma.

Pamma’s character is unassuming and light-hearted despite the violence, and Prince Kanwal Jit Singh’s performance lights up this film. He is funny, delivers witty dialogues (he is also the dialogue writer), and we wait to see more of him, but he disappears for a good while in between. Pamma’s story is the soul of the film, but it is unfortunate that the film does not do justice to either his story or his character, a wasted opportunity indeed.