Movie Review: Commando 2 (2017)

Are you kidding me ?? This was a WASTE !

Waste of time and money and resources. I’ll leave the story-line for later, lets begin with the star attraction of this entire movie – Vidyut Jamwal. If you are wondering why I began the review with “Are you kidding me ??” this is the answer – Vidyut Jamwal.

I’ve a high consumption rate of action, especially martial arts, based movies. The guy who WOW-ed me in Commando and the guy whose action scenes I’d been hungrily following on YouTube (be it South Indian movies or bit-roles in mainstream Bollywood) where’d he go ? Holiday was a trash copy of Thupakki. I’m still wondering why he didn’t reprise his role or if a certain Mr. Akshay Kumar had a say in the matter? Or has Vidyut Jamwal lost his appetite and hunger to provide great entertainment? Between exploding onto the consciousness (2013) and now (2017), exactly what has been going on? He’s done 2 music videos in 2016, still teasing & whetting a greedy action junkie’s appetite. And what do we get for the wait ? We are handed Commando 2. Yawn, yawn and more yawn and one more for a good measure. Seriously, are you kidding me ?? Man, Tiger Shroff has done better in this gap with action.

The main theme appeared to be action. His introduction was okay, even if it tried to ape the Indonesian movie – The Raid (2011). I’ll give him a break on that, even though a similar copy-cat act worked for Tiger Shroff in Baaghi. His next action scene comes up after “the plot has been established”. You will be excused for puking on it. From hereon a classic Hindi slang is applicable – Zabardasti thoosna (Forcibly stuffing). His partners either turn on him or die. Zabardasti thoosna # 1. The cat-n-mouse at Terminal 21. Zabardasti thoosna # 2.

Then, the third action sequence when he’s pursuing his target in the ‘airfield-junkyard’ (?). Really? Do airports have that kind of a waste area, a potential disaster zone. This was legal grounds for Thai officials to launch a lawsuit for misrepresentation. Or are their airfields really so dirty and hazardous?. Ok FTS, let’s consider the action. For once, I was tricked (positively). I thought the intervening hood was a ninja, but he was a bit different. Even the action was a bit different. I liked the props used in the first half of this third fight and even the stunt work. Point goes to the entire team. But it had a chink in the armour. Ada Sharma. No fault of hers. She’s done the most decent job, in a movie parading some potential heavyweights like Shefali Shah and Adil Hussein. On the latter, he’s going off on a path similar to Naseeruddin Shah (only hope he doesn’t start giving media-bytes like Mr. Shah). And of course, he is not only wasted, his role is less than Amitabh Bachchan’s in The Great Gatsby, who had a slightly longer screen time (I call both occurences tragic, given the actors in question).

{Naseerudin Shah does well in properly etched characters and uplifts a movie and walks away with praise and one soon sees him in a masala commercial flick, which has been steadiy digressing from good to okay to puke-able. That’s for another day.}

Right, back to Commando 2 and the second half of the third fight sequence. Ada Sharma is swinging a chain like a bimbette. When the main set of threatening hoods is done with by Vidyut (Zabardasti thoosna # 3), local hoods emerge. Oh Deven Bhojani, Deven Bhojani… tsk,tsk,tsk. Terminal 21 is supposed to be an international airport. First you give the audience a sci-fi airfield (junkyard, was it?), then super-henchies (and they supposedly just evaded ‘tight airport security’, right?) and these second set of hoods? Were they, like, in a queue behind the super-henchmen who evaded the airport security and they too evasively meandered in. Clap. Clap. Clap. And take one more, if that’s what you wanted Deven, CLAP! We’ll get back to Deven shortly. So Ada Sharma and Commando are surrounded now, both should’ve taken on the second set of hoods as a team right? Well they did. However, the director thought it was a good idea to let Vidyut Jamwal hog the limelight. Ada did beat 2 guys (?), but was more like an extra in that scene. Surely Deven, you could’ve given her atleast 30seconds of good dedicated action time to showcase her skills, or were there other factors to consider? Again, comparing it to Baaghi; Dainty Shraddha Kapoor did a great job with her stunts and her Baaghi director should be thanked for trusting in her. Deven Bhojani absolutely shows no faith Ada Sharma. Zabardasti thoosna # 4. And Commando Karan Dogra? Ho ho ho, feather touch eskrima moves. Was Chi flowing through that the hoods fell as if on full impact? QUESTIONABLE and UNCONVINCING !! I’m sure plenty of people put in a lot of hard work, but the stunts came-off awfully. Commando was just touching them and they were going down Zabardasti thoosna # 5. IMO, Sunny Deol does it better, i.e. acting out the aggression. That’s what was required. That’s what we expect from a good action star (am forced to relegate Vidyut to a wannabe after this), act out the aggro, dude!

Anyways, moving on. Commando puts on his thinking hat (really wish I could get a hold of the script writer! Grrr) and tracks down the first clue/target. It’s a cook, who’s found hasta-la-vista-babied. Dead (Zabardasti thoosna # 6). They find a second clue and hilariously decipher it using ‘ a hi-tech forensic lab’ (Lol + Zabardasti thoosna # 7). Jamwal and Ada Sharma then pursue a new target. Here, again, I find an innovative concept which I shan’t give away, except that it contained a scene ‘inspired’ from James Bond’s Spectre. But the execution of scenes which followed were literally executions of the scenes. This is followed by another face-off and another death. Boo-effing-hoo. Zabardasti thoosna # 8. The baddies scoot-off with a valuable item post this face-off (if it was one?).

Next was the BIGGEST Zabardasti KA thoosna. Zabardasti thoosna # 9. A shell game. It’s was shabbily done. This appears to be a conscious effort on the part of Deven Bhojani. The only other thing could be Vipul Amrutlal Shah having ‘suggested’ inputs. Tony Jaa’s free running from Ong-Bak gets copied, yet again! It’s been done to death! Honestly.

And then we come to the lame-a** climax. Here, if I were to compare the two climax fight scenes of Commando 1 & 2, the former wins hands-down by a looong shot. In fact the second one was a farce of a fight. It further makes me think if Vidyut Jamwal was even required for this movie ? Thumbs down fellows (the production team). No thought(s) visible. Post the fight a piecing together followed. Half-a-hope lit up.

A few things are puzzling. The movie being in production for long, how did it incorporate Nov 8th’s demonitization so specifically? Then 2 more questions. When the airport fight takes place, how does it take the baddies sooo long to escape. Did their CCD order take time? A final puzzle, how slow is the internet speed for downloads in Thailand? That too for a gazillionaire scamster?

Now for the acting and story-line. Ada Sharma despite the mediocrity of her role stands out this hashed-up worse-than-street-food offering. She was the highlight IMO. Vidyut Jamwal was making an effort and it showed.

Story-line? Are you kidding me ?? The idea was good. Direction was … well better left unsaid.. I’ll just say very politely it was testing. How does Deven Bhojani even get to direct Commando 2? He’s a veteran TV actor. Yes, he was awarded for Sarabbhai Vs Sarabhai. But look at the genre history he’s associated with – Comedy and non-action based stuff.

And he’s just been associated with very few mainstream Bollywood commercial movies. Even in those what was his role? He must’ve come closest to witnessing the concept of action in Andaz (1994)’s climax and Agneepath (2012), much less being involved. And that qualifies him to direct Commando 2 ?? Are you kidding me ??

So unless you’re a die hard Vidyut Jamwal fan (like yours truly), don’t watch it. It’s a ‘waste of a lot of things’ theory marrys ‘how pathetically a brain can work’.

A Fun Movie Review @ Motographillus: Phantom Part 4

IV

The Ooh ! Ah! Ouch!

[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 receives instructions to head to Karachi, where another RAW asset will help them escape. Nawaz feigns pregnancy (ain’t it easy?) and helps evade a security check. The Ooh: They’re stopped (yes, again) at a desolate check-post at night (Yo! Are you telling me there is SO much discipline??? Uh-umm…Note-to-self: It’s a Bollywood movie, silly boy). Having switched number plates, their car can’t be identified (Ah!) . The policemen inquire about their destination and request for one of their men to be dropped off. As the policeman is about to climb into the Suzuki Gypsy, the original number plate is discovered (Ouch!) leading to a shootout. Nawaz and Daniyal effectively overpower and secure the handful. Khalid tragically has been shot dead.

The duo reaches the Karachi port and locates their contact. As they sail towards international waters, to an awaiting Indian naval vessel, a Pakistani warship patrolling the waters halts them. A search follows but, duo hidden underwater, aren’t found. Several rounds are fired (intuitively?) into the sea. The undercover agent kicks a life saving buoy into the water, as the Pakistani navy men order the craft back to the port.

The Indian navy sets to turn back as the GPS seems to heading back to the port. RAW officer Samit implores them to get there and rescue Daniyal. As the navy has been strictly instructed not to venture in Pakistan’s territorial waters, the officer in charge declines. Samit’s patriotic vitriolic, leads all the navy men to do some soul-searching.

Daniyal and Nawaz resurface and grab the buoy. Nawaz jokes that they’d better swim to Mumbai for the promised cup of tea. Daniyal requests her to have one for him too, then releases the buoy. Mortally wounded, he drowns. Nawaz dives after him unsuccessfully to try and rescue him. Aggrieved she gets back to the buoy. In a few moments a submarine surfaces. Samit climbs out and spots her. He understands that Daniyal is dead and executes an emotional posthumous salute. Nawaz is rescued and received honourably by the Navy.

A navy boat drops off Nawaz near the Taj Hotel, Mumbai. A crowd has gathered to celebrate the killings of the 26/11 perpetrators. A chaiwallah (tea-vendor), offers Nawaz a free cup of tea. He explains his son was a waiter in Taj who’d been killed during the terror attack and he was feeling vindicated today. Hence, he’d be giving free tea to all. Nawaz requests for another cup, to keep her promise to the dying Daniyal.