‘The Gandhi Murder’ Review: A Muddled Conspiracy Thriller | Modern Society of USA

‘The Gandhi Murder’ Review: A Muddled Conspiracy Thriller

‘The Gandhi Murder’ Review: A Muddled Conspiracy Thriller

Opening on the 71st anniversary of the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi, the conspiracy thriller “The Gandhi Murder” begins with a claim to be “based on verified facts.” Given the overall shoddiness of the production, including distractingly inapt casting and matte work that makes a Ganges River scene look fake, those facts are probably worth reverifying.

Directed by Karim Traidia and Pankaj Sehgal, the movie unfolds during the weeks leading up to Gandhi’s death, mingling fictional and real-life figures. It posits that authorities knew in advance that the murder would happen and could have stopped it but didn’t, believing that making Gandhi a martyr would bring unity to feuding Hindus and Muslims in the wake of India’s independence.

It pins the skulduggery on a fictional intelligence officer, Sunil Raina (Stephen Lang), who carries out his plan with the helpful and conflicted inaction of a policeman, Jimmy (Luke Pasqualino). Raina explains his theory of how Lincoln’s death brought the United States together after the Civil War.

It’s difficult to take “The Gandhi Murder” seriously as “JFK”-like speculative paranoia with the former Guy Ritchie heavy Vinnie Jones (in a “special appearance”) and an American-accented Mark Moses (Duck Phillips on “Mad Men”) playing posh Brits — to say nothing of Lang’s presence as an ethnic Kashmiri. It seems best to accept the musical numbers (“I am not Hindu or Muslim/Just let me live”) and occasional lapses into martial arts as characteristic of a generous Bollywood-style aesthetic.

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