Akshay Kumar, has sort-of, reinvented himself as someone who leads these action films (Holiday, Baby, Gabbar is Back) which are commercial in their essence but they also manage to sneak in a social cause in their themes trying to educate the youth with problems plaguing India. Now, continuing in the same vein, Akshay is back with Gabbar is Back. The title of the film is eye catching and the trailers have managed to raise curiosity. So is it able to capture the audiences in Bollywood like the original film ‘Ramana’ did in Tamil? Is Akshay Kumar able to continue his good form after Holiday and Baby? Are Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Akshay Kumar able to deliver another blockbuster together (after Rowdy Rathore) as a producer-actor duo?
Story: Gabbar is Back follows the original Tamil film Ramana to the tee but manages to Hindify a few things so that the context doesn’t feel too alien for the Hindi speaking audience. Aditya (Akshay) has lost his pregnant wife (cameo by Kareena Kapoor Khan) in a building collapse because of a mishap caused by the builders. Aditya survived and is now a professor with an army of loyal students. Along with his students, he devises a plan to tackle corruption head on by kidnapping corrupt public officials and killing them to root out corruption. In all this, there’s also a love angle involving the beautiful Shruti Hassaan and a villain who repeatedly keeps calling himself a ‘brand’. Suman Talwar who played the chief villain’s role in Rajnikanth’s ‘Sivaji the Boss’ plays the villain Digvijay Patil. There’s also Sunil Grover playing an incorruptible cop called Sadhuram who is responsible for discovering Aditya’s identity.
Gabbar Is Back Review: Krish, the big shot South Indian director, who makes his Bollywood debut with Gabbar is Back, does a decent job of bringing all aspects of the story together without losing its pace. It is a commendable effort to keep the essence of the original Tamil film and to keep the pace flowing. It is watchable because the film is rooted in a heightened realistic world which bears no resemblance to a real world where law and IPC exist. If you are fine with the world being shown in Gabbar is Back, then the film is right up your alley. The dialogues, however, could have been written in a more tasteful manner and the silly item number should have been done away with. It is time to rethink how Bollywood treats women.
The technical aspects of Gabbar is Back suit the genre of the film. The cinematography is decent enough for a commercial action film and the editing is fine too because the length is kept to a minimum of 132 minutes. As mentioned earlier, the dialogues are below par for a film which has been named after Gabbar Singh, probably Hindi cinema’s biggest Dialoguebaaz! The production design and costume design feel a little dated, unfortunately.
The music of Gabbar is Back is nothing special with none of the songs making a mark unlike Rowdy Rathore which had many chartbusters to its name. The only song which is hummable is the romantic track Teri Meri Kahaani.
Acting: Akshay Kumar is the headlining act of Gabbar is Back and rightly so. We can’t think of anyone who would have done better, as Akshay doesn’t overplay his role and keeps it subtle inspite of having powerful dialogues to deliver. He manages to show why his aura is still strong after 2 decades. Shruti Hassaan is the weakest part of Gabbar is Back as the lead actress. She is charmless. Sunil Grover is fantastic as Sadhu and you will forget his Gutthi act after Gabbar is Back. We hope to see more of this talented actor in the future. Suman Talwar is monotonous as the lead villain and doesn’t bring anything new to the film. Even Jaideep Ahlawat who is otherwise a fine actor disappoints in his role.
Conclusion: Gabbar is Back should be watched for what it truly represents: a commercial Hindi entertainer which tries to highlight a major problem of corruption which plagues the country. But the problem is, the issue of corruption isn’t topical anymore after the change in government last year. If it released a year back, maybe it would have been even more impactful. Regardless of that frailty, Gabbar is Back is largely entertaining and flows nicely; you won’t fall asleep because of the fast pace and also because of the glaringly loud background music. If you are in the mood for a full blown commercial Hindi entertainer, then Gabbar is Back is your best bet this week. And it is always nice to see Akshay Kumar in form!
- Akshay Kumar – absolutely incredibly in such roles! Charisma, superstar screen-presence, he’s got it all!
- Sunil Grover is good too!
- The issue of corruption is tackled in a commercial manner
- The action scenes are impactful and the climax is good
- Editing and cinematography suits the nature of the film
- Gabbar is Back doesn’t bore the audience
- The music and Shruti Haasan are the biggest disappointments
- Villains don’t work
- The production design and costume design make the film look dated
- The Dialogues are bland and invoke a sense of the 90s