By Subhash K. Jha
Mumbai, Jan 12 : Flag-waving is very much in vogue these days. It seems anyone can make a film as long as it panders to the patriotic sentiment.
To get into the patriotic mode, “The Ghazi Attack” sinks to new depths… literally. It is an underwater thriller set during the 1971 India-Pakistani war. The cast is understandably masculine in comportment. There is much barking of orders and panic shouts across a set that does a reasonably believable job of making us feel we are in a submarine.
During the course of the trailer, the only woman who shows up is Taapsee Pannu, who blabbers in Bengali about ‘Sonar Bangla’. She is a breath of fresh air, until Rana, the macho man, assures her, “You are safe here”.
Bangladesh’s war of independence gets a pretty face.
Rana Dagubatti, whose stardom got elevated when he played Bhallala Deva in “Baahubali”, strikes heroic poses throughout the trailer. He seems to be playing rather than experiencing the turbulence described in that mythical Bachchan baritone. Rana has always been more of a ‘poseur’ than a ‘feeler’. His performances reek of enforced machismo, as though he was using the screen space to propagate the myth that macho men are at battle all the time.
The battle here is under the sea. The special effects are barely passable. Though the film would like us to believe it is an epic undersea adventure story, “The Ghazi Attack” doesn’t quite impress, let alone dazzle us.
The supporting cast is impressive. This is going to be one of Om Puri’s last films. As such his single-shot presence in the trailer is dismaying. Stalwarts like Atul Kulkarni and Kay Kay Menon bark orders in a submarine that seems as real as 1971 can get in 2017.
The best moment in the disappointing trailer belongs to Kay Kay Menon who tells his superior, “You want that when I am attacked by the enemy I should wait for your further instructions?”
Indeed. This is film that seems to be in urgent need of unrehearsed action.
In its trailer, “The Ghazi Attack” is not quite the spectacle it promised to be. Historical accuracy seems to have been observed. But is that enough incentive to watch Rana manning it up while the rest of the cast waits to come up for air above the water whenever the submarime decides to take a breather?