Finally, I was able to catch up with Shoot Out at Wadala today and the movie buff that I am, watched a movie after aeons in the theatre. It’s been long since I haven’t done a film review and always longed for review as a film critic at work. Trying my hand at the review below and stroll to read my review. Please lemme kno the feedback:)
Cast: Anil Kapoor, John Abraham, Manoj Bajpai, Mahesh Manjrekar, Sonu Sood, Tushar, Sunny Leone, Kangana Ranaut, Ronit Roy, Sophie Chowdhurry and Priyanka Chopra
Director: Sanjay Gupta
Rating: Three and a half stars
Review is based on screenplay, direction, actors’ performance and entertainment quotient
Hindi cinema has always been fascinated with the lives of Gangsters and the likes of Haji Mastan and Dawood has been depicted on screen in a concise manner. Amitabh Bachchan’s characters as Vijay in both Agneepath and Deewar were modelled on Mastan, while Sarkar’s Subhash Nagre was a tale of Bal Thackeray meeting Godfather. Sanjay Dutt and Ajay Devgan successfully donned the underworld kingpin in movies like Vaastav and Once Upon a Time in Mumbai.
The toughest part is when you’ve made a successful sequel like Shoot Out at Lokhandwala and attempt to make a sequel, there is bound to be comparisons which often damage the film. Critics may pan you ruthlessly and debate on whether the sequel has lived up to the expectations. First things first, Once Upon A Time in Wadala has a very strong content, skilful direction and good performances from the entire cast and the movie is spell-binding and it not only lived up to the expectations of the prequel and manage to carve its own niche. The movie is based on dreaded gangster who was shot dead in an encounter on Jan 11, 1982 and is based on the book from Dongri to Dubai by Hussain Zaidi.
SOAW is the story of Manya Surve (John Abraham) who has been wronged by the police and who learns to hate the force for destroying his life, full of aspirations and dream. Surve, through the help of his acolyte, Tushar (Sheikh Munir) becomes a dreaded gangster whose aim is to take over Mumbai and in his obsession is involved in a gang war. However, inspector Baaghran (Anil Kapoor) is determined to stop and kill Surve so that the city can sleep peacefully.
I was surprised by the acting skills of John Abraham, an actor whom I lost faith in long time back, as Surve and I didn’t nurture high expectations from the actor. John redeemed his acting skills in this author-backed role and was able to do justice as Surve and aptly delivers as the brooding gangster. It is his best performance so far as an actor and he should not shy away from playing serious and intense roles like this one. Anil Kapoor is proficient as always and he donned the role of a cop after a very long time. The actor is simply fab and shines in the movie. Manoj Bajpai shows once again that he can excel in any kind of role and it is an education watching him perform. Mahesh Manjrekar is simply fabulous in his one-liners, like why should I remember you, are you a hero? or Amitabh Bachchan has brainwashed people heads and everybody want to be a hero nowadays, obviously referring to the movies of 70s and 80s where Bachchan dominated films. Tushar is okay, Sonu Sood is natural and endearing so is Jackie Shroff in his two minutes cameo. Kangana Ranaut does not have much to do and apart from the glamorous quotient, she is passable. Priyanka Chopra sizzles in the item song Babli Badmaash where she pays a tribute to Amitabh Bachchan in the song, saara zamana haseeno ka deewana in Yaarana. While Sunny Leone adds to the oomph factor in the item song, Laila.
Film-maker Sanjay Gupta who has a penchant for underworld movies and action thrillers deserve the applause for making SOAW a fast-paced movie and not once, boredom seeps in. It is heart-pounding and the action scenes are well-executed. The director deft handling of the subject and through extracting good performances makes the movie a spell-binding affair as the viewer is glued to its seat. The story by Gupta and author Hussain Zaidi is captivating, cinematography by Sameer Arya gives a new dimension to action-thrillers. Moreover, the sound recording stands out.
However, the movie has certain flaws that shows its ugly face during the second half of the movie. The love-making and intimate scenes between John and Kangana is detrimental to the script as it is not central to the film’s theme. The romantic incursion between John and Kangana appears out of place and seemed to have been fitted in the wrong place to fill in the gaps. The romantic scenes could have been edited and fitted properly in the film. SOAW has not one but three item numbers Priyanka Chopra, Sophia and Sunny Leone. Is it not too much for an action packed movie based on the underworld? From a cinematic perspective
, the film doesn’t need a spate of item songs back-to-back and certainly, one is not watching some item girls’ albums.
Despite its short comings, SOAW is a fast-paced action thrillers which is commonly rare nowadays. Sanjay Gupta deserves all the credit for the tight screenplay and direction that hold the audience glued to its seat. The film is refreshing and is a winner on all counts. Paisa wasool! Go and watch SOAW which carries repeat value. Certainly, one of the best films made this year in terms of entertainment.
Work-in-progress, seeker and bundle of contradictions. Stubborn and Refusal to grow up and constantly in search of myself, I blurt it out on my space. Drop in and share some love. Indian by choice.
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