Traffic Review by Bollywood Hungama
Even though (late) Rajesh Pillai has directed a handful of south Indian films, TRAFFIC happens to be his first Hindi film as a director. One really has to applaud him for the conviction with which he has treated the subject of heart transplant. His direction complements the film’s narrative and also every character in the film. Full marks to him for the way in which he has extracted some of the amazing performances from the actors. The film’s screenplay (Suresh Nair) is outstanding and its story (Bobby Sanjay) extremely believable without resorting to any over the top antics. The film’s first half maybe slow in establishing the film’s story, but it’s the film’s fast pacy second half that keeps the audience on the edge of their seats till the end. What actually plays the ‘villain’ in the film’s narrative though are the numerous ‘cinematic liberties’ that the filmmaker has taken in order to establish the film.
Traffic Review by Saibal Chatterjee on NDTVMovies
The storyline does have minor gaps and a strong dose of contrivances, but the direction and the acting ensure that they do not derail the film. Bajpayee is absolutely brilliant as the cop. He conveys a gamut of subtle emotions with minimum visible effort. He is ably supported by the other actors in the cast – many of them are seasoned pros who know exactly what they are supposed to bring to the table. Especially notable is the perennially underrated Jimmy Sheirgill, who lends to the character of the police commissioner a cloak of believable humanity.
Traffic Review by Mehul S Thakkar on Deccan Chronicle
The film will keep you engaged with its brilliant execution by late director Rajesh Pillai and remarkable performances by the ensemble. Also to be noted is Sachin Khedekar performance as a father who goes through a personal loss. He plays his part really well. Divya Dutta as a wife of a superstar has a lot of teary eyed scenes which she manages to pull it off quite well. The climax is the high point which gets your attention back to the film. Giving away the details of it may be a spoiler but those scenes have great background music and it has been shot in a sleek manner.
Traffic Review by Suhani Singh on India Today
For a film which largely unfolds in real time, Traffic lacks direction and pace. That’s because too much time is spent in establishing the back stories and motivations of the ensemble cast and then resolving their many issues. It comes to at the cost of deviating from the significant mission itself. The twist that arrives in second half is hardly a surprise. Only Bajpayee performs his part well, with the rest not having much to do.
Traffic Review by Shubha Shetty-Saha on Mid-Day India
Given the topic (story by Bobby and Sanjay) in hand, this film could have been a fast-paced edge-of-the-seat thriller. But unfortunately and surprisingly for most parts, it moves at a meandering pace. The constant reminder of time with timeline put up gets the audience gauge the emergency of the situation more accurately than the characters in the film. The execution in most parts is pretty amateurish.
Review by Jaidev Hemmady on Movietalkies
When the deadly race against time commences, you lean forward to enjoy a pacy thriller, but there too, the film tends to disappoint. The director fails to infuse a sense of urgency or desperation to complete the mission on time in the narrative. Bajpayee has always wowed us with his talent, but even the Satya star cannot do much in the film as his character hardly gets to talk and spends most of his time behind a steering wheel. Jimmy puts in an earnest effort as always while Prosenjit seems uncomfortable in his role as the arrogant superstar, who is used to getting what he wants. Divya Dutta and Kitu Gidwani turn on the waterworks with irritating regularity while Sachin Khedekar and Vikram Gokhale hardly get to do much. Parambrata too is wasted in the role though Amol Parashar as Rajeev lends able support to the story.
Review by Sweta Kaushal on Hindustan Times
Suresh Nair, who adapted the Malayalam screenplay for the Hindi movie, has kept the script tight and narrative gripping. The build-up to the road mission to transport a heart sets the premise for all the characters and tells us about their lives. This portion drags at times but some good acting ensures we are not distracted.
Review by Martin D’Souza on Glamsham
The film has its crisp moments which keep you engrossed. It also banks heavily on emotions which are handled with restraint. Overall, the film highlights how fickle life is. Prosenjit Chatterjee as superstar Dev enacts his life to the ‘T’ showing how shallow and hollow everything around him is. Sachin Khedekar as the grief-stricken father who has to take a decision on his brain dead son impacts with his body language. Manoj Bajpayee as Godbole gets into the skin of a havildar. A complete change from the professor he displayed in ALIGARH. As for Jimmy Sheirgill, time he gets out of the police uniform! Overall, TRAFFIC is a feel good film although it does have the documentary feel in between.
Review by Sukanya Verma on Rediff
Traffic doesn’t have people but causes to care for. Besides advocating organ donation, it also pitches in the ineffectuality of religious differences when health is concerned through its model depiction of the Hindu-Muslim chord. At the same time, it’s also a bitter reminder of how medical aid is a privilege only a few can avail at the cost of reckless driving and inconvenienced public. Traffic doesn’t address its ethics or anything profound. It doesn’t aspire to be anything beyond a bumpy ride to half-hearted glory. And in that it is entirely successful.
Review by Bryan Durham on DNA India
When making a thriller and populating it with characters, an audience has to be keenly aware and invested in the emotions of everybody concerned. And for some reason, that just doesn’t happen in Traffic to the degree that one expects it to. The performances are mostly middle-of-path. There are instances when you feel the twists and turns the film takes, deviate from flow far more than the actual obstacles Godbole and company face. Also, one has to ask, cynically enough, were Dev not so well-connected, would as many risks be taken by Gurbir? The film has its heart in the right place, but the soul isn’t along for the trip. The film had the potential to do much, much better, but gets stuck, ironically, in the traffic of its own making.
Review by Meena Iyer on The Times Of India
The characters and key-plot situations are seamlessly interwoven. There are some predictable playing-to-the-gallery religious sentiments introduced to get the desired results. But this can be overlooked because at it’s core, this is a well-intentioned film with fine performances from its ensemble cast. Special mentions are reserved for Manoj Bajpayee and Jimmy Sheirgill, who are A-grade. Though, they’re just in extended cameos; these two effortlessly rise above the length of their roles.
Review by Shubhra Gupta on Indian Express
While I was engaged with the goings-on in the original, which borrows from ‘Amores Perros’ to craft multiple threads featuring multiple characters all converging on one point, I found myself tuning out in this one, because the crispness and the sense of urgency is missing. Even if you haven’t seen the first, which spun off remakes in Tamil and Kannada, this one stutters. There is always going to be poignancy and heartbreak in the impending death of a young life. And Kitu Gidwani and Sachin Khedekar channel that emotion well : how can you switch off the machine that’s keeping your son alive? Suppose he comes out of the coma? They underplay, and are effective.
Review by Sreeju Sudhakaran on Bollywood Life
Like in the original Malayalam flick, the entire Bilal colony sequence doesn’t gel well with the rest of the proceedings. While I loved the performances in the film, I felt the Bengali actor, Prosenjit looked out of place as the Bollywood superstar, especially when compared to the performance of Rahman in the original film. The actor failed the bring the required arrogance to the performance, though the film also doesn’t allow him much breathing space. Also, with the lack of star power and low-key promotions, I doubt the film will make much of a mark at the box office, until there is a very strong word of mouth campaign.
Review by Kunal Guha on Mumbai Mirror
A remake of the 2011 Malayalam hit of the same name, this one fails to channel the same energy as a lot is lost in translation. The marketers of Traffic broke the film’s trailer just after Aligarh shot to indie fame and Bajpayee was coronated as the flagbearer of the genre. But just like Revolver Rani couldn’t piggyback on Queen, this one can’t cash in on brand Bajpayee. Organ donation is a noble cause that this film picks up to endorse. But the superficial focus on the humanitarian act only draws attention away from it.
Review by Manisha Lakhe on Nowrunning
For a remake of a Malayalam movie this one tells the tale based on a true story, but it becomes so tedious because it tries too hard to infuse the TV drama pace of Kiefer Sutherland’s 24 and ends up being tedious.
Review by Meeta on Wogma
Despite a low budget, no frills show, there are a few scenes that are done really well. Then there are the obvious product placements and lapses like mobile phones that work in rain that serve as distractions too. However, the two things that hold Traffic together are the basic plot and the commentary it tries to engage its audience in. The performances aren’t particularly bad, but they seem rather superficial even though every one cries really well. They manage to bring a lump in the throat. Of course, actors like Divya Dutta, Manoj Bajpai, Sachin Khedekar, Kitu Gidwani, Vikram Gokhale and Jimmy Sheirgill try to infuse as much energy as is possible in the lacklustre dialogue. However, this brings the performances all together only to a not-bad-not-great level.
Best Rated Films in 2016
- Neerja – 4 stars
- The Jungle Book – 3.8 stars
- Airlift – 3.7 stars
- Kapoor & Sons – 3.7 stars
- Nil Battey Sannata – 3.7 stars
- Aligarh – 3.6 stars
- Fan – 3.5 stars
- Zubaan – 2.6 stars
- Saala Khadoos – 2.6 stars
- Laal Rang – 2.5 stars
- Ki & Ka – 2.5 stars
- Bollywood Diaries – 2.5 stars
- Tere Bin Laden Dead Or Alive – 2.3 stars
- Jai Gangaajal – 2.3 stars
- Fitoor – 2.3 stars
- Baaghi – 2.2 stars
- Rocky Handsome – 2.1 stars
- LoveShhuda – 2 stars
- Love Games – 1.7 stars
- Santa Banta Pvt. Ltd – 1.1 stars