Good that director Rohit Shetty waited all this while for a theatrical release
The best thing about Rohit Shetty is that he gives you exactly what you expect, playing high within those boundaries. Sooryavanshi is a film that will have you enjoy every bit of it, even the preachy notions that you otherwise wish to stay away from. This is masala genre for you, in all its length and breadth.
Watch the trailer here:
It is Mumbai Police vs deadly terrorists in a long drawn war that has been the talk since 1993 Bombay blasts. The task lies with Veer Sooryavanshi (Akshay Kumar), the Chief of Anti Terrorism Squad, who the CM calls a madcap.
The story is Rohit Shetty’s. The aspect what makes this a worthwhile experience is the fact that every attempt has been made to incorporate every single matter of masala genre. Right from full throttle action to romance to a seductive number (a recreation of the 90s), to drama, emotions, the combo of Akshay-Ajay-Ranveer (which is one of the biggest highlights of the film). Everything has been woven in the screenplay with such precision that you are thoroughly invested in the drama. One thing leads to another in the fight against terror and even the back stories relating to love and family life don’t seem misplaced. They fit in well.
The characters are many, with mostly known actors on board, making this an immersive watch. It is also noteworthy how all of them have individual spaces within the narrative without making the affair cluttered at any point of time. To add to it, you have Singham and Simmba adding to the star appeal, who enjoy their screen share as much as you enjoy theirs. This is a difficult task when you are dealing with such a big film with so much at stake. But the screenplay makes it look effortless.
Shetty, along with satisfying his inner hunger of action complemented by flying and destroying cars, also plays on human emotions by way of talking about humanity and religious harmony. India ke Musalmaan dialogue or the scene where Sooryavanshi talks to a maulvi for what is right and what is not, or when a handful of Muslims lift a Ganesha idol and place it safely elsewhere with a mosque in the backdrop (all this with an idealistic background song), a terrorist also evoking emotions when he expresses his last wish before that final gunshot fills the hearts of Indians with love and emotions. Ofcourse you may see it as unnecessary but thinking of it cinematically and associating it with this genre, you definitely see it all as masterstrokes.
In addition to having a base for the next Singham film, you do see the cop universe building when Shetty brings together the three cops together and creates a visually spectacular climax. Give it up for Shetty again for conceptualising action in a way that calls for reruns and reviewing to consume those parts in their full spirit. You are glued and thoroughly mesmerised in what seems to be an out of the world experience, especially when you know most of the stunts have been done by Akshay Kumar himself, some without even a harness.
Ofcourse, the world created here is too good to be true. Challenging. Demanding. Exaggerating. But all the way entertaining. It is a world where the hero gets shot only to be fallen in love with the girl and doesn’t even get a scar when there are gunshots all around. That’s what it is, by the very nature of the genre. But that’s what masala films are for. And that’s where this one succeeds- in taking your adrenaline to an all new high.
Akshay Kumar, more than his acting, just wins you over by being in the film. He suits in the role just by his presence. His fit personality is an add on. He is so good to see in the film.
Katrina Kaif has a smaller role but she acts brilliantly. Over years, she has improved herself as an actor. And that clearly shows.
Javed Jaffery impresses you with voice as much as his presence and performance in the film. He is good and exudes warmth. Jackie Shroff has an important but a small role. He is fine with his strict body language at play. Gulshan Grover has a fairly decent role and he does use his reputation to his advantage. He is good.
Rajendra Gupta is decent in a small role. And so is Nikitin Dheer who has a fairly etched out role to shine. Abhimanyu Singh has also been given substantial screentime to make his marks, which he clearly does. Sikandar Kher has a small role but does fine with what he has in store for him.
Kumud Mishra is underutilised. He although makes for a delightful screen presence.
Despite all actors and strong ones, Ranveer Singh especially and Ajay Devgn also manage to lift the bar and raise your viewing experience to great heights.
The score is high on energy and style, making you move along with the characters in their over the top journey. The theme music for the lead character is simply phenomenal for the recognition and power it renders.
Cinematography by Jomon T John helps strongly in making this film grand and vibrant. You are thrilled and taken in for a magnificent ride because the camera lets you feel that punch. It takes you through skies and the roads and the seas in a flair. Production design by Swapnil Bhalerao and Madhur Madhavan also must be lauded for how it has managed to give Shetty’s vision meaning and depth. You do see VFX at play but how it is created is also intelligent for the film to grow on you.
Editing by Bunty Nagi is razor sharp and utterly crisp. You don’t feel bored during breathers and remain glued for the entire runtime. It is a longer film compared to what people today are used to seeing but you don’t feel any pain. And that is what editing must be credited for.
If films are for entertainment, this one here is one of the pioneers. Do watch this one for inclusive delight and sheer pleasure of watching films.