There is an over the top way of storytelling that has always been there in YRF’s biggies. Dhoom 3, Thugs of Hindostan, Tashan etc were phenomenal examples for how badly they executed interesting (borrowed) ideas. Siddharth Anand is the man who famously Indianized Knight and Day with tacky execution of imaginations. So War, which marks the union of these two creative forces, is absolutely a mix of these two compromised making styles. With an exhausting length with far too much creative free”dumb”, the only take away here is the chiseled bodies of the actors (only for those who aren’t interested in cinema).
As most of you may have seen in the trailer, the best agent of India, Kabir has gone rogue. The India government decides to send its next best Khalid, who knows what Kabir will do next, to catch him and kill him. The evolution of this cat and mouse game and the reason why Kabir went rogue is the content of War.
By now I hope most of you might have got an idea that I wasn’t a fan of this film. So let me warn you about the possibility of saying things that might end up as SPOILERS. From the trailer itself, it was quite evident that the movie was primarily focusing on star power. But when the movie finished I felt the makers had no regard for the basic intelligence of the viewers. It almost felt like Yash Raj created a business model just to create hype and make money through that. The longevity of the content is not at all in the agenda here and the story by Aditya Chopra and Siddharth Anand has almost all the clichés one can expect, making some of the twists make us go “not again”. I watched this movie in a packed house and there were only a couple of instants where the audience whistled and that was mostly for the swagger Hrithik Roshan portrayed on screen.
The commercial success of Bang Bang, that had a Pizza Hut in a no man’s land and Hrithik Roshan’s CG mapped head driving a Formula One car, has given Siddharth Anand all the rights to forget the term coherence. Jingoism and islamophobia are abundant in the film and you have Hrithik’s Kabir frequently saying dialogues that have terms like Desh, Watan, Soldier, Sena, etc. In fact, his proper introduction in the movie has him and the national flag for almost 10 or 20 seconds. The twists are not at all surprising. The kind of twists where the Villain goes “hahaha! I have double-crossed you!” and then the hero goes “Buhahaha! I knew you would double-cross me” are the ones happening here. It almost reminded me of the Race franchise and was it the reason why they had a special thanks card for Ramesh Taurani? (The Race franchise producer). The CGI was really bad in my opinion. When you mount a project like this that has two giant action stars, this is not the level I expected. There are numerous scenes where almost everyone can easily recognize that it is a green screen scene. There is a bike chase sequence in the mountains and you could really sense how badly Tiger and Hrithik were matted onto the sequence. The rigging and the cuts also caused issues in the presentation of fights. Music is forcefully added to the movie as both songs had no purpose in the narrative at all.
Hrithik Roshan is the “sir” here and Tiger Shroff is the junior. Siddharth Anand tries to capitalize on the idea of Tiger being the next Hrithik by making Tiger look at Hrithik in awe when he is walking in slow motion showing off his biceps. That is basically the effort required here from Hrithik and he has done a commendable job in carrying the swagger; the only good thing about this film. No offense to Tiger fans, but he is only playing a supporting character in this film. In fact, there is a whole portion of the film where you will almost forget that he is there in the narrative. Towards the end, there is an area that offers him a space to do some performance in terms of acting rather than doing the acrobatics, but the pitching of that zone is so banal that you won’t feel like appreciating Tiger for trying something that’s kind of new. Vaani Kapoor is there for one dance and two scenes. Ashutosh Rana is there in a role that just demands his screen presence.
Some of you may come up with an argument that we always praise this kind of thing when people like Tom Cruise do it. Those movies don’t create set pieces just to show off. The scripts sort of demand them. In War, most of the set pieces have this forced nature. I would have enjoyed War if there was at least one action set-piece that looked completely fabulous. War failed even in that. The movie was so unexciting that you might even forget about the Jai Jai Shivshanker song that had The Hrithik Roshan and The Tiger Shroff dancing together.
The movie was so unexciting that you might even forget about the Jai Jai Shivshanker song that had The Hrithik Roshan and The Tiger Shroff dancing together.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended