“Oh God, one more remake,” the line that accurately sums up our feelings about Rajkummar Rao’s “HIT The First Case.” Seriously, what was the thought process behind remaking what was a moderately successful source material into something that rendered itself into an extremely derivative and overdone story? Is Bollywood really so reliant on remakes that the desire to do something different doesn’t even occur to the industry anymore? It is true that they tweaked the original script a little, but what was the point of it if they could not make it better? It went from mediocre to a slightly different form of mediocre. And the ending was so absurd that it made us realize that only Rajkumar Rao, in the entire team, was fully committed to the project. Let us see how this movie plays out.
How Does Vikram Solve Preeti’s Case?
“HIT The First Case” starts with Vikram running through a valley covered with snow, desperately calling out a name—”Sushma.” He finds her locked behind a door and struggles to break it open. However, to his horror, she is set on fire, right in front of his eyes. Cut to the present day. He is being advised by his therapist to quit his job, as she believes that it is just worsening his mental health and he needs a break. But Vikram is adamant and believes that letting go of his job is not an option. He is in a relationship with Neha, who is a forensic expert. While it is a loving relationship, he has withheld his past even from her. Every time she tries to get him to open up about his past, his answer remains the same- “Some other time.”. The therapist tries talking to Neha to convince Vikram to quit his job. Neha agrees with the therapist and begs Vikram to listen to her. But Vikram is adamant, which triggers Neha to finally lose her patience. She angrily questions him that when he doesn’t talk to her, never shares anything with her, then what are they in a relationship for? Vikram is shaken up on hearing this and he angrily agrees to take a temporary break, but not before saying that it will change nothing.
Elsewhere, a girl by the name of Preethi steps out of her house for an outing. Before she leaves, she gets a call to which she angrily replies to the person to stop bothering her. As she drives on the highway, her car breaks down. Preethi is waiting by the sidewalk, unsure of what to do when a police car passes her by. The Inspector named Ibrahim, seeing Preethi, enquires whether she needs any help. Preethi tells him that her car has broken down and she asks to borrow his phone. She calls her dad and asks him to come pick her up. Ibrahim leaves, considering the problem solved. When he reaches the station, he sees that he has missed a file and goes back to get it. He notices Preethi on the other side of the road talking to someone in a blue car and assumes that it is her father. But in a turn of events, when he is going back to his station, he sees an old man waiting by Preethi’s car. Upon enquiring, he finds that this man is actually her father. He tells him about the blue car and assures him that Preethi must have gone out with a friend. He also tells him to contact him in case Preethi doesn’t return.
As fate would have it, Preethi doesn’t return and her parents angrily stomp into the police station berating Ibrahim for not waiting with her. Ibrahim tells them in a strict tone to watch their tone and file the complaint so that he can start the investigation. He starts to look into the matter by trying to track down the blue car, but is unable to find any lead as no such car was caught on camera. But to his bad luck, Preethi’s parents have complained about his behavior, causing him to be suspended and removed from the case.
2 months pass the incident and Vikram, who is on his vacation gets a call that Neha is missing. He rushes back to his job and requests to be assigned the case, but is refused because of his proximity to the victim. Upon some independent investigation, Vikram finds out that Neha had made some breakthrough in the case of a missing girl, Preethi, and believes that her disappearance could be connected to that.
Can we just say that Neha was a forensic expert who probably handled tons of missing cases? Vikram picks out this one case as the possible connection would have been totally absurd if this was not a movie. The makers clearly don’t trust the audience’s intelligence but bank on their pre-existing knowledge of such a film, to know that, of course, the protagonist can do no wrong. This is one of those things that shows that, more than the script itself, the star-power of the actor has been relied upon to make the audience enjoy the movie. Does that route even work anymore, considering the brilliant films and series available on OTT platforms now?
But coming back to “HIT The First Case,” as Vikram investigates Preethi’s disappearance, he starts getting involved in it on a level independent of his desire to find Neha. He is accompanied by Rohit, his friend, and colleague, throughout. He finds one bad clue after the other, most of which lead nowhere. He comes to know that she had two best friends and a teacher who was intent on moral policing. After facing too many dead ends, he finally hit a solid lead in the form of Sheela, Preethi’s neighbor. She faked a note, saying that Preethi’s body would be found in a go-down. Turns out, she did it for attention. But all of Vikram’s suspicions are centered on her. They also find Preethi’s decomposed body, right where Sheela’s fake note said it would be. Her car also has soil from that site. She is the prime suspect now. In a surprising turn of events, different people’s DNA was found on Preethi’s dead body, including her boyfriend, her adoptive father, and her previous warden, making the case impossible to solve.
‘HIT The First Case’ Ending Explained- Does Vikram find Neha? Who killed Preethi?
Finally, when things come to a standstill, a girl comes to a police station saying that she saw someone in a blue car on the highway, who tried to forcibly approach her—the exact circumstances in which Preethi disappeared. Vikram follows the lead and he finds the person who works as a mechanic in a garage. Upon interrogation, it comes out that the mastermind behind the whole thing was his own colleague, Rohit. He goes to ask him why he did that but Rohit refuses to answer and takes out his gun, prompting Vikram to shoot him in self-defense. Neha is found, tied upstairs, unharmed and safe.
Vikram deduces that the reason behind Rohit’s actions is his wife, Sapna. She confesses that she and Preethi grew up together in an orphanage and that she had always been in love with her. But when Preethi got adopted, she had to move on in her life. Years later, when she reconnected with childhood love, she was rejected because Preethi was straight. However, Sapna was not ready to give up, and she had Preethi kidnaped, to convince her to start a new life with her. Turns out, it was Sapna who Preethi had been telling to stop contacting her. In the tussle that follows, Preethi got seriously injured and ended up dying. Rohit helped her cover up the crime. He was the one to plant everyone’s DNA samples on her body and to frame Sheela further, all in an effort to buy more time till they could move out of the country. They had kidnapped Neha because she was close to discovering them. But they never had any intention of hurting her.
As Sapna is put behind bars, Vikram finds a letter from Rohit stating that there were never any bullets in his gun. He had also written that he knew Vikram would discover the truth eventually and that he would be glad to die at his hands. It is an emotional moment, about the human errors that end up causing such tragedy, but made so absurd in its execution by a lackluster movie focused entirely on the wrong things. “HIT The First Case” ends with someone trying to shoot Vikram, and barely missing. This is the mystery that will be explored in the sequel.
Final Thoughts: Why Does The Remake Of ‘Hit The First Case’ Not Work?
We can say without comparing the film to its source material that whatever tweaks the makers thought they made to the original film, they did not make this any better. It is still only average. “HIT The First Case” was a wild goose chase. And maybe in a real investigation, the leads are worth following, but when it is being shown on screen as a film, the audience already knows that the party being questioned is innocent. Then what is their incentive to emotionally invest in the content? It’s not like they made a feel-good rom-com that is light on the senses. This was a thriller that demanded that the audience use their brain cells but somehow didn’t trust their intelligence one bit. And that’s why this remake doesn’t work—because there was literally no effort put into it. Rajkumar Rao, with his dedication to this project, could not save it. And we are not inclined to recommend a film to anyone that takes its viewers for granted on this scale. It’s a skip for us.
“Hit The First Case” is a 2022 Drama Thriller film directed by Sailesh Kolanu.