Wazir (2016)

I went completely unprepared for this one. No trailers, no spoilers, no articles, heck- I didn’t even know the cast. Though on hearing widely positive reviews from my peers, and on finding out that Amitabh Bachchan was starring in the movie, I got the tickets to Wazir.

After another eventful year, Bollywood had a solid opening in 2016 with Bejoy Nambiar’s Wazir. The critically acclaimed director left no stone unturned and Wazir is an exciting piece of film-making.

Story

The plot is interesting enough to keep the viewer engaged throughout. This is a suspense thriller, and the mood is definitely set right. However, the movie should’ve lasted for less than 90 minutes. There were plenty of elements to keep it going but there was still not enough detail to justify its final run-time. The movie isn’t what you would call slow, but it isn’t a racy thriller either. This is to be blamed more on the direction than the writing.

[Spoiler] There’s one aspect in Wazir’s story that I simply can’t get out of my head ever since I saw the movie. Daanish basically had no role in the movie’s intended outcome.

If instead of pursuing the vehicle of the terrorist, Rameez, he would have simply reported the number, the authorities would have taken over from there. As evident in the movie, the Indian Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) was already taking care of the entire operation with professional efficiency.
And then Farhan Akhtar fucked everything up.

If it weren’t for him,

  1. Farooq Rameez would have been captured alive.
  2. His capture would have helped expose known associates, including his Indian political contact.
  3. Welfare Minister Yazaad Qureshi’s eventual arrest and interrogation would’ve revealed all the details of his terrorist agenda.
  4. Qureshi’s known contacts would have been obtained. Including all the corrupt government officials, like the police.
  5. Faith in India’s security forces would’ve been restored.

Also,

  1. Noorie would’ve never died.
  2. Pandit Omkar Nath Dhar would’ve never killed himself.
  3. Crores of rupees worth of damage would’ve been saved.
  4. I would’ve saved ₹120. (Not that I regret paying for this movie. It was enjoyable.)

Direction and Style

Wazir-Pics-Images-HD.03-002
Pandit Omkarnath Dhar played by veteran Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan

Unfortunately, even Wazir isn’t immune the usual glitches that plague so many Bollywood movies of today. On that note, the music in the movie wasn’t that intrusive and the movie didn’t lose focus on that front. One big issue was the overuse of slow motion sequences, in virtually every part of the movie, coupled with a loud background score. In Wazir, my jaw never dropped and by the end of the movie I was sitting with a frown.

Cast

The acting was good. Amitabh Bachchan was at the top of his game as ever. Farhan Akhtar didn’t disappoint either. In fact, acting is one of the strong points in Wazir. Only the child actor (whose name I do not know), who plays Qureshi’s forcibly adopted daughter, Ruhi, was a low point in the acting. It was completely off-putting to see her on screen. Her character would’ve been better off if she were mute.

The biggest drawback of the movie besides the overuse of slow-motion sequences was the excessive crying. Bollywood movies always lean too heavily on generating sentiment. It was like everyone was crying over everything, everywhere, all the time. By the end of first half, I was slightly perturbed, and by the end of second half, I was annoyed.

Aditi-Rao-Hydari-In-Wazir
Ruhana Ali during her wedding, as played by Aditi Rao Hydari

Again, one of the biggest up-side was Aditi Rao Hydari. I just wish she were given more screen time. Not that her role was not given adequate importance, it’s just that if you showed only her for the whole length of the movie, I would’ve rated this like 5-stars. Great acting on her part, Aditi Rao played her role just as well if not better than the other main cast.

The acting was top-notch, and the cast is sure to bag some awards this year.

Music

The songs featured here were quite good actually. This movie reminded me of My Name is Khan where most of the songs were really good to listen to. (Only that this movie was much better than that disaster.) Rohit Kulkarni rightly deserves praises here.


Bollywood is maturing really well with films like these. Movies like Wazir are shining examples as how mainstream Indian cinema can push boundaries in storytelling. Wazir was a starkly different approach to a suspense thriller is a welcoming entry into the 2016 Bollywood roster. Like a breath of fresh air, Bollywood has a decent opening this year with Wazir. This movie will not disappoint.

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