It won’t be an exaggeration if I say that the release of “Pathaan” was markedly seen like a festival for cinema lovers. And well, it had to be, as it marks the return of Badshah Of Bollywood after the wait of four long years! One of the most awaited films of the year, which had the viewers on edge with excitement for a very long time, finally released in the theaters this week.
Like most spy thrillers, “Pathaan” too is set against a patriotic background. It’s 2019, article 370 has been just revoked in Kashmir, leaving Pakistan shocked by the decision. To teach India a lesson, they take the support of a private terrorist gang called ‘Outfit X’. The leader of this gang, Jim (John Abraham), was once a brave and patriotic agent of RAW, but a personal tragedy made him despise the country. Jim’s aim is to now create havoc on India through a virus. The Indian Intelligence Agency gets to know about his intention, and against him they stand their most capable agent, Pathaan (Shah Rukh Khan). No prizes for guessing that.
On this mission, Pathaan meets Rubai (Deepika Padukone), an ISI agent who becomes the connecting link between the hero and villain. Will Rubai support Pathaan or betray him? Is she just another one dimensional Pakistani agent – a femme fatale with singular purpose? Is Jim doing all this for personal reasons or bias against one country, favoring some other? And the most important question, does Pathaan succeed in his mission?
There is no doubt that Siddharth Anand as a director has created an impact when it comes to action films. But just like his previous outings, the story of ‘Pathaan’ is not very different or unique from any other spy thriller that we have watched in the past. Of course, in terms of the story, the film is weak but the kind of action, special effects and dialogues that have been written, they completely cover up for it.
The strong side of the film is its VFX, cinematography, action sequences and music. Be it Dubai, Paris, Afghanistan or Africa, Satchith Paulose’s cinematography shows the grandeur of the city and location in every frame. ‘Pathaan’ absolutely lives up to the hype and gives a larger than life feel on the screen! The songs of the film have already made a way to our hearts and playlists and we just can’t stop grooving to them. The music by Sachit and Ankit Balhara is absolutely brilliant and the background score acts as a catalyst to increase the thrill and excitement during the film. Not only are the locations of the film grand, but the way the costumes and styling of the cast has been done, it calls for an appreciation.
For the past four years, we all have literally yearned to see Shah Rukh on the screen and with this comeback he totally lives up to all our expectations. Be it his looks, the performance, the body language, the swag, the dialogue delivery, literally everything makes us drool over him. Yes, he is the undisputed King Of Romance but when it comes to action no one can match him here as well. The movie’s next-best thing is John Abraham in the role of villian. The film stands out only when along with the hero we have an equally strong villain and John’s character is very well crafted with an impactful performance from his end. Deepika Padukone surprises. Along with being glamorous she is seen doing power packed action scenes and we just can’t wait to see more of this from her. In the supporting cast, Dimple Kapadia and Ashutosh Rana did a good job and their presence brings balance to the film.
Overall, the first half of the film is definitely a bit long and even a bit sloppily paced, but it’s the second half after the interval that reveals the true emotional and action grandiosity of this multi starrer film. It keeps you hooked waiting for the story to start again. “Pathaan” has all the elements that one would expect from a Masala Bollywood blockbuster. The excitement with which the fans seem to enter the theater is bound to be carried outside, thus compounding his already well established grandiose stature in not just the industry, but the country. Go watch it at the theaters near you!