Friday, 1 May 2015

Gabbar is Back :: Movie Review


Gabbar is back is a slickly made, well-paced action flick that works quite well elementally because it has been served up grandly by director Krish, with a preposterous tale of law, disorder, anarchy and vigilantism. The movie is a remake of Tamil Film Ramanaa (2002) helmed by A.R.Murugadoss which was a runaway hit paving way for its remake in Telugu (2003) as well as Kannada (2005). It is really surprising that this film caught the fancy of Hindi film producers so late i.e. after 12 years of its release especially when Bollywood has been churning out Southern remakes at a rapid pace, lately. Time and again Bollywood has churned out movies that have dealt with the social issues. Sometimes the Politicians have been blamed, sometimes the police force, sometimes the medical services have come under line of fire and sometimes it is a single point of blame - SYSTEM. But who makes the system ? Is it just a name as above or it constitutes of each & every individual who consciously or unconsciously becomes a part of the system. This is a question that director Krish aims to answer in his magnum opus "Gabbar Is Back". Corruption is that illegitimate child, which nobody wanted but it still took birth, grew up and took a gigantic shape. It has somehow become an invisible yet inseparable part of our system as it exists in various forms. It is for sure that we don't like it, but the question is do we try and fight against it ? All of us have become so busy in our day to day affairs that most of us have accepted corruption as a part of system and neglect it to the core when it comes to fighting against it on a personal level. We don't want it but neglect it when we want to get our work done at the earliest. Come on man, we don't have time, just get the bloody work done somehow even if it involves greasing the palms of the officials concerned. So, before criticizing the system and Government machinery for being corrupt, we need to peep inside us and take a reality check as to how we have succumbed in front of this system for our own selfish gains instead of fighting against it. Most of us when confronted with this question will have a tailor made answer ready with them....How can one single person bring about a change. But, if one person takes the initiative and puts his front foot forward to eradicate corruption by challenging the system, many others might follow suit paving the way for a change. And, this is what Akshay Kumar precisely does in Gabbar is back by waging a war against rampant corruption in the society. In this action thriller, director Krish has portrayed that how a common man performs extraordinary feats to ensure that justice is done. He instills a sense of fear in the minds of wrong doers with the usage of his P.W.D i.e.Power Waala Danda. The movie showcases that when pushed to extreme corners, even a common man be dangerous. "Don't underestimate the power of a common man"....the dialogue seems filmy. Definitely yes, but with the apt direction of Krish and power packed performance of Akshay Kumar you not only begin to believe in on-screen proceedings but also get inspired by them. You begin to believe in the power of Gabbar, though he is not a superhero like Superman or Batman but is strong enough to eradicate the corrupt from the society : be it bribe seeking collectors or other corrupt law enforcers. And one more thing, his mantra is simple : don't chastise the corrupt but straight away eliminate them. Suffice to say, Gabbar is Back is typical commercial potboiler with all the quintessential elements of a formulaic film but its theme and treatment make it a good one time watch.  

STORY & SCREENPLAY  (SPOILERS AHEAD)                                                                           ::    The credit for the story has been given to A.R.Murugadoss as he is the one who wrote the original Tamil film "Ramanna" of which this movie is a remake. The additional screenplay as well as dialogues of this movie have been penned down by Rajat Arora who has done a good job out of it. He has structured the screenplay in such a way that it adheres to populism which will be appreciated by masses and further laden it with some real hard hitting dialogues against unbridled corruption. And, to his advantage he has Akshay Kumar mouthing those dialogues with such ferocious power evoking aplenty of passion & emotions in the audience. Like he says. "Ye system bachon ke diaper jaisa ho gaya hai......Kahin se dheela aur kahin se geela" and you can hear the applause coming in form of claps from the audience.  Rajat Arora who has proven his writing finesse in the past by writing powerful & well acclaimed dialogues for "The Dirty Picture"& "Once Upon a time in Mumbai" introduces the protagonist of this film as " Naam se villain, Kaam se Hero". The movie is set in Maharashtra where the system is so rotten that Government officials openly accept bribes, Cops are busy savoring Samosas with red chutney and private hospitals are so much into minting money that they perform operations on a patient who is already dead. A commoner who has been pushed to extremes decides to stand against all this and uses the name of a cult film character "Gabbar" to shield his real identity. Though, there are several glitches in the screenplay but the fast pace of the movie overrides them. The movie begins with kidnapping of 10 tehsildars in Maharashtra pressing a panic button in Police force and soon one of them is found hung on a pole with some files &  Audio C.D. tied to his body. When cops take down the body along with files and C.D., they are amazed to find that the files contain records of all the corrupt deeds conducted by the dead Tehsildar. When they play the C.D, they hear the voice of a man who introduces himself as Gabbar and warns them that this is just the beginning and more corrupt officials will be eliminated in future. Cut next, the scene shifts to National College where Professor Aditya (Akshay Kumar) is teaching five elements of survival to his students. While he is driving at night, Devaki (Shruti Haasan) signals him to stop as a pregnant lady has to be rushed to a hospital who delivers the baby in his car only. After this incident, Devaki and Aditya become friends going out on coffee dates. Meanwhile, a collector is kidnapped and his body is found again with files and audio C.D. Cops decide not to leak the contents of CD to media but it is sent to media by Gabbar himself making him a hero in the eyes of common people who feel that someone has the guts to stand up and act against the corrupt. While the cops are lurking in the dark about identity of Gabbar, one of the constables by the name of Sadhu (Sunil Grover) starts investigating and collecting clues about him. But, since he is a constable, none of his superiors take him seriously and make mockery of him. While walking along with Aditya, Devaki gets injured in a freak accident and on reaching hospital Aditya realizes how hospital authorities are fleecing the patients. He conducts a sting operation on their unscrupulous activities and leaks it to media. An irate crowd gathers outside hospital and a melee ensues there in which son of the owner of Hospital dies. The owner of the hospital is a big industrialist by the name of Digvijay Patil  (Suman Talwar) who gets shattered due to death of his son and wants to seek revenge. On watching Aditya in the CCTV footage, he is shell shocked as Aditya is the same man whom he had killed five years ago. Flashback begins where Aditya was married to Kareena Kapoor Khan (cameo) who dies when a building complex collapses which was owned by Digvijay. Aditya collects all evidences to nail Digvijay but is unable to do so as all Government officials are hand in glove with him. A fight ensues between the two and Digvijay hits Aditya with a iron rod leaving him for dead. But, Aditya is saved by some students and hereafter begins the journey of Aditya turning into Gabbar to weed out corrupt. Meanwhile, more corrupt officials are kidnapped and eliminated paving the way for Government to appoint an efficient CBI Officer ( Jaideep Ahlawat) to crack this case and nab Gabbar. While other Cops are in a tight spot with no information, Jaideep is amazed to see the clues that Constable Sadhu has collected to nab Gabbar and starts working on them. Will the real identity of Gabbar get revealed, Will the cops be able to tighten their noose around him, Will Gabbar be able to take revenge from Digvijay or Will Gabbar come out in open and expose himself is what forms the rest of the story.              

STARCAST                                                                                                     ::            A special mention of Anmol Ahuja & Abhishek Banerjee (Casting directors) for choosing the apt starcast as all the actors have been perfectly cast as per their characters in the movie. Although, it won't be wrong to say that the movie belongs to Akshay Kumar. With his dynamic portrayal of Aditya / Gabbar, a vigilante leading from the front, Akshay Kumar gives ample proof that he has really matured as an actor. After Special 26, Holiday & Baby, he seems to be on a roll and in all these movies he has played the role of a protagonist who is out to weed out corruption albeit in different avatars. I can not think of any other star who could have played this role with such ease and conviction. He is one actor who has both massy as well as classy fan following and when he mouths those dialogues against corruption, they reverberate in your mind drawing loud cheers from audience. He looks equally convincing and at ease while he is preaching about the ill effects of rampant corruption prevalent in the society or mouthing dialogues like..Gabbar ke Taap se tumhein ek hi aadmi bacha sakta hai....Khud Gabbar. Khiladi Kumar is at his best in this movie and he has carried the movie single-handedly on his broad shoulders. Shruti Haasan looks beautiful but Alias ! the limitations of her character restrict her to be just a glam doll and add to the oomph factor of the movie. She shows sparks of being a fine actor despite her screen time  being limited. Watch out for her intensity in the scene where she rebukes Ahlawat for locking up, beating students & aides of Gabbar. Another actor who surprises you with his fine performance is Sunil Grover as Constable Sadhu. We have seen him lighting up the small screen by playing the role of Gutthi in "Comedy Nights With Kapil' and making people laugh to their wits end. Here, he plays a serious character and pulls it off with full might. You really feel for him when he becomes a butt of jokes of his superiors despite his genuine efforts to crack the case. Jaideep Ahlawat once again proves how fine an actor he is by playing the role of CBI officer to pitch perfection. His firm body language, mannerisms are in stark contrast to the negative character that he portrayed in his earlier flick "Commando".  It takes a while for you to ascertain that he is the same actor who played that casual, rogue character in "Commando"...these are hallmarks of a fine actor. Suman Talwar as Digvijay Patil gets ample of screen time to showcase his skills but he fails to impress as his acting is too loud which is reminiscent of his performances in South Indian movies. Moreover, his frequent attempts at glorifying himself by saying " Digvijay Singh Ek Brand Hai" begin to irritate you after a certain juncture. Another actor, who manages to impress you with his performance is Vikas Shrivastava who stands tall amongst the coterie of Cops trying to solve the case of Gabbar. He is another fine actor who needs to be seen more frequently on big screen with more meatier roles. Kareena Kapoor Khan & Chitrangdha Singh light up the screen with their cameos which are restricted to songs itself.  

TECHNICAL FINESSE                                                                            ::   The soundtrack of the movie that has been composed by Chirantan Bhatt, Yo Yo Honey Singh & Manj Music has got catchy tracks packaged in it. "Teri Meri Kahani" sung by Arijit Singh & Palak Muchal is easy and pleasant to listen and "Aao Raja" sung by Neha Kakkar, Yo Yo Honey Singh along with Teflon is typical Bollywoodish catchy number. The background music of the movie has been composed by Amar Mohile who has done a fine job out of it. The BGM of this movie is not that loud and jarring which is usually the case with movies of this genre but is apt enough to provide a further propulsion to the visual commentary of the movie. Indeed, another real Hero of this entertaining film on the violent end of that much-abused emotion called Humanity, is cinematographer Nirav Shah. Nirav's unerring eye for a detailed lush and vivid emotional and physical landscape has made this movie a visual treat for your eye balls. The movie has been edited by Rajesh Pandey who has kept the run-time of the movie to 130 minutes. The editing of the movie is racy, taut and the movie never comes across preachy despite the fact that the subject of the movie has an underlying tone of the same. Another person who deserves a special mention is Stunt Shiva who is the action coordinator of the movie. He has orchestrated some real high octane stunts and fight sequences which are a treat for action lovers. As a director, Radhakrishna Jagarlamudi (Krish) has proven his mettle by making an entertaining remake of "Ramanaa". It is not an easy job to make a perfectly balanced & entertaining remake because the original film serves as a hard benchmark while filming the remake. It is tough to replicate something while maintaining the interest of audience in the same. Krish has done this job to a more-than-satisfying extent. Krish has ably kept the pace of narrative racy so that glitches in the screenplay are covered up and given most of the screen time to Akshay who has utilized it to optimum. 

CONCLUSION                                                                                                ::  GABBAR IS BACK but this time not as an antagonist but as a protagonist with the will to weed out corrupt from the system. It is a high-voltage drama, full on masala entertainer  amalgamated with the biggest issue of prevalent times ; corruption and is a descent one time watch for its slick pace and a towering performance by Akshay Kumar.

ROHIT SHARMA. 
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