Films | Commando – Movie Review

Commando – Movie Review

Posted by FATEMA H.KAGALWALA on April 17, 2013 | No Comments

PRODUCER – Vipul Shah
DIRECTOR – Dilip Ghosh
WRITER – Riteish Shah
CAST – Vidyut Jamwal, Pooja Chopra, Jaideep Ahlawat
MUSIC – Mannan Shah

In the age of dumb comedies and South style masala remakes, comes a good old, hardcore action film with an equally traditional good-vs-evil, one-man army setup.

Commando Karnaveer Dogra (Vidyut Jamwal) is a dare-devil armyman deserted by the Indian Govt when caught by the Chinese for infiltration. The political system becomes his enemy no 1 but the true-blue defence force patriotism in him compels him to continue waging war against the evils inside the country. He finds his perfect anti-hero in an eye-ball-less demon in human form Ak-47 (Jaideep Ahlawat) who is a drug-dealing maniac that populated the silver screens in the 80’s. An added motive is in the form of Simrit (Pooja Chopra) who Commando saves from AK’s clutches and is now hooked to.

In a completely devil-may-care attitude, the action in the film takes precedence over everything. Of course, there are ‘respites’ in the form of a spunky, bubbly heroine chattering away as the hero continues to give sullen looks. There are item songs and other numbers to keep the musical element alive. There are jokes flowing around to keep the comedy included and there are platitudes to do with nationalism to invests a certain seriousness in the otherwise brawny film.

All this largely makes Commando an eye-candy, blood and gore film, the sort that draws the audience of video games like Mortal Kombat and Manhunt with glee. To its credit, there is a finesse in the action and a taut editing that keeps the mood racing thanks to South African action director Franz Sphilhaus and editor Amitabh Shukla. The abundant jungle sequences add a dash of danger and rawness reminding us of Arnie’s Commando but without its edginess.

What helps the film is the slick production values. Sejal Shah ensures the cinematography is clean, gorgeous and eye-catching and the song and dance numbers, even if useless to the narrative or overall experience aren’t tacky.

What could have otherwise become wannabe or style over substance is saved by Vidyut Jamwal’s cat-like ease and powerful moves. He looks, walks and acts the all-out action hero, helping us invest in his character and root for him, however lame his cause may seem to us. Ex-Ms India Pooja Chopra, (always primed and powdered even in the middle of a chase or forest) is saddled with a stereotyped chirpy, talkative role that is meant to endear her to us and she does the job with a distinct intelligence and brightness but we do sense that she is better than this and she may know that as well. Jaideep Ahlawat makes his over-the-top criminal lord digestible enough with a controlled menace and in a film that is brimming with everything to the extreme this becomes a boon.

A completely action-packed film, it lacks adventure or character but makes up for it in raw power and unrelenting force. For those looking for just that, it isn’t bad deal at all.

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