Kaabil (2017)

I’ve done a short duration of pre-production work in Kaabil, and so that was the primary reason to go see the film. I did work for the part where Rohan kills the goon Amit, and I basically thought it was a intense fight drama. Little did I understand that the plot of the film was as old as cinema itself.

Hrithik Roshan plays a visually impaired man in Sanjay Gupta’s Kaabil. From the trailers one could have guessed that it had something to do with two blind people falling in love. While this storyline is a part of the film, it is merely a sub-plot. After getting married, within a few happy days, his wife, played by Yami Gautam, also visually impaired, gets brutally violated by two goony men, and he then goes ahead and systematically plans revenge on them. Hrithik gives a committed performance in the film, but the film itself is weighed down by its overall artificiality.

The chief among them is a strong dilemma between the two core plot points. We see our protagonists, though visually impaired, to be self-confident and independent. They have regular jobs and are strong enough to make a life for themselves. But then the film takes a turn towards scenes which are straight out of mid-80s bollywood, with eve-teasers and corrupt cops on the payrolls of villains.

The camerawork by Sudeep Chatterjee and Ayananka Bose in Kaabil is first-rate but the digitized backdrops are plain ordinary. Though there are some smart surprises in the manner that Gupta executes Rohan’s elaborate revenge plan and shrewd twists built around seemingly innocuous clues. But the film is too predictable to watch. Though the first half is mildly gripping, in he second half Gupta loses his hold. Plus the film is ridden with plot holes bigger than those dug up by KMDA.

Now, though the rumours of Netflix suing the makers of Kaabil was merely a rumour, but one will definitely find able similarities with Daredevil, a current popular show on Netflix.

The audience could have overlooked all these shortcomings, if the film had anything new to offer. Except for out protagonists being blind, there is nothing new. As I said before, the plot is as old as cinema itself. Kaabil almost seems like a B-grade cinema from the 80s. The villains are picked up straight from the 80s bollywood handbook. If there is anything that is redeemable in Kaabil, it’s our leading man’s sincerity and conviction.

I’m going with 2.5/5 stars for Sanjay Gupta’s Kaabil. If you decide to watch the film, watch it for Hrithik’s performance and Hrithik and Yami’s chemistry.