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FILM REVIEW: Vikram Vedha

Blurring the line between right and wrong Starring: Saif Ali Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Radhika Apte, Satyadeep Mishra, Yogita Bihani, Rohit Sa...

Blurring the line between right and wrong

Starring: Saif Ali Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Radhika Apte, Satyadeep Mishra, Yogita Bihani, Rohit Saraf

Rating: 3.75/5

Vikram Vedha is a film that doesn’t waste any time getting to the point and cuts all the comedy that people have come to expect out of Bollywood action films and instead uses that time to make the audience cheer at the stunning visuals and action set-pieces.

The film follows an honest cop Vikram as he tries to track down Vedha, a gangster who has committed 16 murders to date and is based out of Lucknow. To nab him, the Uttar Pradesh police have created an STF (a Special Task Force) headed by the witty and suave Vikram. Getting a tip that Vedha is hiding in an abandoned structure, Vikram along with his best friend Abbas (an extremely dependable Satyadeep Mishra) and other members of the STF go to the place and kills all of them but not Vedha. One day on getting a tip about Vedha’s whereabouts and preparing to leave to kill him, in walks Vedha coolly (a seeti-maar entry by Hrithik Roshan) into the police station and surrenders! With Vikram sitting opposite him, Vedha narrates his story which goes back 13 years ago while he was working for a Kanpur-based criminal Parshuram, and also the story about his younger brother Shatak (Rohit Saraf leaving a mark) and his childhood friend Chanda (Yogita Bihani) and why Vedha committed his first murder. Vedha puts Vikram in a dilemma. As Vikram is preparing to hear more stories from Vedha, in walks his lawyer Priya (a wonderful Radhika Apte) Vikram’s wife, and secures Vedha’s bail. What follows is a cat-and-mouse game between Vikram and Vedha.

Pushkar and Gayathri direct the Hindi remake of their acclaimed 2017 Tamil film and succeed in grabbing a hold of a wider audience. Under all the massy action and stylistic character entrances, Vikram Vedha is a deeply sociological film that questions human morality and how we come to the solution of what is right and wrong in a manner Indian cinema has never seen before. The duo directs this magnificently with little to no flaws technically with a tightly structured screenplay and some of the best cinematography an Indian blockbuster has seen.

2022 has been a good year for Indian blockbuster action films getting the recognition they deserve and this is a solid entry into that category. The director duo, like many other South-Indian filmmakers, know how to make a massy film that has something for everyone, and that skill of theirs is more evident here than it has been in any other Hindi remake of a South-Indian language film directed by the same filmmaker ever.

This film was already destined to be a commercial success even if it was a bad film due to the two A-listers signed on as the leading men – Saif Ali Khan and Hrithik Roshan. Saif Ali Khan plays his role as Vikram with subtlety and crisp one-liners too and excellently as expected out of him and Hrithik Roshan plays his role of Vedha with as much charisma and style needed for a character of that stature. Despite two excellent performances from the two leads, Saif Ali Khan ends up stealing the show. Both complement and don’t outdo each other. The choreography for the action set-pieces is excellent and at times, breathtaking, like many other South-Indian films. There are some unnecessary scenes that could’ve been cut (the biggest example being the song Alcoholia) but despite those scenes, the film doesn’t lose the momentum it had built from the start.

A fast-paced film, VV deserves to be seen in a packed theatre.

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