A Fun Movie Review @ Motographillus: Phantom Part 1

A ‘Munich’ like plot, where a disgraced army-man Daniyal Khan (Saif Ali Khan) seeks to avenge the tragedy of 26/11 terrorist attacks. The popular concept of Indian cinema where the hero (protagonist) is by default the superman was kept intact. Saif Ali Khan looked leaner than he did in Agent Vinod. In both he’s portrayed roles of an undercover R.A.W. agent.

[It’s a fun review. The author’s PJs and humour are not intended at hurting anyone’s sentiments. My apologies if it does. Enjoy. :)]

Daniyal Khan resides in a secluded mountain house till R.A.W. contacts him to undertake a mission to eliminate 26/11 perpetrators. Nawaz Mistry (Katrina Kaif), a reluctant ally, who aides him through London, American prisons, Syrian combat zones eventually to Pakistan for the ultimate leg of the mission. Urdu replaces Hindi, yet still oozes expected emotional efficacy, which has perennially seeped into and found acceptance in the psyche of the Indian cine audience. A chequered mix of tragedies and successes leads to a victory of the greater good.

I

The plot begins with the staged road rage death of an U.S. national. Six months prior a militant is apprehended attempting to cross into India. Interrogation reveals little, which prompts a meeting between R.A.W. chief, Roy (Sabyasachi Chakrabarty) and his subordinates. Enthusiastic young R.A.W. officer Samit passionately proposes a mission similar to daring UBL (Usama bin-Laden) take down in Abbotabad. Roy dismisses it instantly.

He’s later shown to be reminiscing his meeting with the Home Minister, who dismisses the same proposal brusquely. Like any defiant junior keen on rebellion, Roy (with a screw-the-boss view) goes ahead and unofficially flags the mission involving the same core group is and swears them into secrecy. “Not even the pet dog is privy to this.” Roy warns.

Greater Good ki Jai Ho, Greater Good Zindabad (Hail the Greater Good).

After much research they zero in on Daniyal Khan. After multiple persuasive attempts, (including one of Daniyal firing at them, to shoo them off) Roy steps in and churns the frigid soldier’s soul. Daniyal’s father, a retired colonel, has ex-communicated him for bringing dishonour. Daniyal eventually agrees to undertake the mission. The mission is simple: “Kill 26/11 perpetrators. Let ISI know it’s us but be unable to pin it on us”. He’s briefed and put through to a contact. Nawaz Mistry.

Nawaz, an ex-R.A.W. agent now informant, is employed with a security firm called Blackwater. Though she chides Daniyal, she does divulge answers to his cheeky queries. They are after the first target Sajid Mir; Nawaz is still in the dark about Daniyal’s objectives. Mir is identified due his peculiar smoking habits and style of greeting. Daniyal breaks into Mir’s apartment. Discovered by one of Mir’s men, a fight ensues. Daniyal wins and rigs the place for a gas explosion. He forces Mistry to gain proximity for a thorough verification of Mir. Mir lighting Nawaz’s cigarette, lights one for himself. Entering his house with a lit ciggie he gets ka-boomed.

Pretty Mistry collars deadly Daniyal and gives him an earful. She does not approve. Even though it’s for Greater Good. Next stop – U.S.A.

Daniyal (in the guise of Jude Rosario) is convicted and put in the same jail as David Coleman Headley. Befriending a stuttering desi jail-bird, he gets a job as the bathroom janitor. Same bathroom where soap-smelling Headley bathes. He puts a call through to Nawaz requesting for $100 to buy a music player. She checks out his location and learns that David Headley’s there too! Reluctantly, she wires $200 through to Daniyal.

Daniyal creatively smuggles a poison (which clogs all the pores) in the music player’s battery and installs it in Headley’s favourite shower. The Last Bath of soap-smelling Headley by Daniyal Khan.

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