The Late Review: Rustom will make you spellbound as Akshay marches on
It is really difficult to write a review for a movie which is good and has already proved its mettle on the box office. Sometimes, though, there are certain movies which have done exceptionally well at the box office for various reasons, like releasing on thousands of screens and maybe because of certain star power, but the script still has enough flaws to criticize and a critic gets a chance to lick his or her lips to write a stinging review. But over here Rustom gives you very less or in fact, none of those chances as it keeps you tight to your seat right from the word go till the end. Yes, I am aware that many of the critics have still found some mistakes in the movie, but I always write my reviews as just another Hindi movie fan, hence the grip Rustom had on me from the first scene till the last, has hardly given me any chance to look at those faults.
Yet a few mistakes I did notice and one of them is a factual error, which is showing play cards outside the courtroom, which I believe was not a tradition in India till late 1990s. This is a story of the early 1960s and thus when you see a girl waving a play card which is saying ‘marry me Rustom’ would immediately attract your attention to notice a mistake. Another mistake I have found that, Rustom himself or the tabloid owner Erach Billimoria or even that big shot Parsi industrialist whom Erach meets in the beginning don’t speak in typical Parsi accents. Maybe the director was of the opinion that, the flow of the movie shouldn’t not be disturbed by a few of his actors speaking in Parsi accents and not the others will make the audience work hard to understand them. But the fact remains is that most of the Parsis in those days used to speak in their own sweet accent. Apart from these two visible mistakes I hardly found any in either script or otherwise.
The Nanavati Case, on which this movie is heavily based on was a simple case of a murder, although the hype shown in the movie about the case was real and lower court did let him off after a jury verdict, but later he was convicted in the High Court and then in the Supreme Court as well. But on such simple facts, no Bollywood movie can run successfully, hence producers and director of the movie along with Akshay Kumar probably know this fact better than anybody else, so they brought the aircraft carrier angle into the fray and that has worked wonderfully well. It also serves the logical reason for Rustom to kill Vikram Makhiija who had an affair with Rustom’s wife and also involved in corruption which could later hamper India’s coastline security.
The film moves so swiftly and there are no noticeable dull moments. The best part of Rustom is that it talks about the subject in hand ONLY and nothing else. This is really a mature handling of a sensitive subject as we have seen in past directors spoil the flow by introducing a love angle or even inserting a song forcefully. There are certain light moments as well, but they all are connected with what actually is happening before your eyes. Two notable Gujarati faces in the movie certainly made a Gujarati in me feel proud. One of them is Deepak Gheewala as Bhanabhai and the other is Anang Desai as typical judge we used to see in the last century.
Usha Nadkarni as Jamnabai is another perfect casting and it was visible even when the trailer was released. Kumud Mishra has been my favorite since the beginning of this year. Noticed him first in Airlift as Sanjeev Kohli and then in Sultan as Salman’s coach Barkat Hussain and now as Erach Billimoria in Rustom. He seems to be an honest actor and does what his director wants him to do. Over here he has been given a role of a funny yet a business minded Parsi who is also happens to be a tabloid owner and he has been honest to this role as well. Although as I have mentioned here had he been also allowed to speak a bit in Parsi accent, I am sure he would have done that too exceptionally well.
In other supporting cast Pawan Malhotra is really good. In such type of movies it has become a pattern to have a police officer who is investigating a case to be serious, but at times witty as well and Pawan Malhotra has fit the bill. Arjan Bajwa has done what has been asked for and so has Esha Gupta and Illeana D’Cruz. There can be no doubt about the capabilities of Sachin Khedekar who is playing public prosecutor Lakshman Khangani here. I had a doubt, though when I saw him in the trailer that will he look like a public prosecutor or not, like some of the greats in the past as he was to engage directly with Akshay Kumar. But while watching him enacting Khangani the only word for Sachin Khedekar can be ‘superb’.
Why I always rate Akshay Kumar high as an actor and as an entertainer is because he can unleash two entirely different performances in his back to back movies with similar command. Not so long back we have seen Akshay doing all kinds of crazy things in Houseful 3 as Sandy or Sundy or even unbridling certain ‘gay gestures’ as Sameer Ghazi in Dishoom which released hardly two weeks before Rustom and now as Rustom Pavri he has hardly even smiled during the entire length of two hours and thirty minutes. The most noticeable expressions shown by Akshay in Rustom when during the court proceedings, there are certain moments when we feel that things are going against him and then he shows a complete flat face which is an expression in itself for a person who thinks just what we were thinking sitting in the audience.
The selection of scripts by Akshay has made every one surprised and he keeps on coming with big hits after every two to three months. Rustom will be another medal on Akshay Kumar’s enthralling career and that’s all I can say at the end of this blog, as I am totally out of words to bring more praise for this great guy.
18.08.2016, Thursday (Rakshabandhan)
Click here to read the Late Review – Mohenjo Daro