Amidst huge expectations, the love for cinema and a personal bias for Ranbir Kapoor, I walked in last night to see the magnum opus Brahmastra which has been the talk of the town rather the nation for quite a while now. Just like how there has been a rush of boycott noise around the movie, the movie has already has it’s shows pre-booked till Sunday which is a great thing given how the industry really needs a success and how we need a great film to witness.
Coming to the movie, did we eventually find a great film in our hands remain supremely debatable but the hope that a blockbuster is on it’s way is still a strong hope. Trust me, movies much worse than Brahmastra have minted sky-rocketing businesses and how. Brahmastra, directed by the earnest Ayan Mukerji has been his dream project since almost a decade and stars the most dependable actors like Ranbir Kapoor, Alia Bhatt and the megastar Amitabh Bachchan to say the least. Sadly, the film is strictly average.
The movie starts with Guru’s (Amitabh Bachchan) baritone voice where he talks about how since the very beginning of time, the various protectors of Astras, ie, magical mystical superpowers, have lived in unison and secrecy to save the world from the evil and have been living till date with their unique Astras with the main goal of saving the Brahmastra, which is the most powerful Astra which has ever existed. The movie starts with Shiva who is a DJ playing his tunes in an event in Varanasi where he has continued visions about a renowned scientist from India. Cut to the much talked about cameo by Shah Rukh Khan who plays Mohan Bhargava, a scientist who is also a part of the members of Brahmansha. The cameo is mighty impressive and you’ll hear loud seetis and hooting from everyone in the theatre. This scene actually sets the tune of the film and raises the expectations further more only to disappoint us later.
Post the flashback, Shiva, in his usual ‘so much is happening’ life, stumbles upon a girl named Isha (Alia Bhatt) and falls in love (duhh) who is attending the DJ event with her cousins. She is rich, glamorous, adventurous but also simply impractical in the decisions she makes. When they finally meet in person and post their super cringey exchange of dialogues which is so 2011, they decide to spend the night together to celebrate a birthday party of a kid in an orphanage where Shiva is a local star. A lot is happening again in Shiva’s life and brain and he continues to get flashes of a different world and what is happening to the scientist Mohan Bhargava. These flashes make him shudder in disbelief which Isha conveniently calls ‘daure’ basically attacks. These shudders continue till the end of the film and affect the actor’s performance a lot and is a major point of concern in the film given RK is a brilliant actor.
In his continued visions and flashes, a lot is known about Shiva, his childhood, his parents and how fire has no effect on him making it harmless for Shiva. A girl who he has just met also readily agrees to join him in his quest to find the answers of his puzzling visions without even knowing his full name. In his quest, they meet a bevy of people who also just like Isha, trust them blindly and help them move forward in their adventure. What disappoints here is again the lack of graph for the characters and a poor screenplay.
The film progresses with another cameo by the south superstar Nagarjuna who plays Artist and is honest in his approach as an actor. He helps Isha and Shiva to finally meet Amitabh Bachchan, the current leader of the Brahmansha, who teaches his students how to save and master the Astras at Brahmansha, a place away from the eye of the world. He finally meets Shiva and Isha and tells them what lies ahead and how to tackle them. In superior form, Amitabh Bachchan is easily the best part of the film. He is sincere, compelling and effective in his treatment to such a serious cause in the film and I truly wish his role was longer and had more screen-time.
All this while, Mouni Roy who plays Junoon, the main antagonist in Brahmastra, is following Shiva and Isha to find the Brahmastra for her master. With such an important role and a great opportunity, Mouni hasnt made use of it how it should have done. She mostly acts like how she did in the past with hamming and eye-movement in her Naagin days. I wish it could have worked for her and her craft but sadly it doesnt. What happens next with the splurge of VFX and ear-deafening background score which even makes the dialogues in audible, is simply a wasted opportunity and a mismatched spectacle.
The main disappointments from the film are Ranbir and Alia’s performances which seem like they were shot years ago making them obsolete. The two actors who are prolific actors seem confused with what they actually wanted to present and what actually landed in the film. The same is the cringeworthy dialogues by Hussain Dalal who hasn’t thought that the movie is releasing in 2022. Not to forget, the deafening background music continues to make the dialogues rather important ones inaudible and its a huge mistake. Despite all this, there were cheers and roars in the theatre and a massy feel to the movie can be expected. If the film turns out to be a massy entertainer, it can surely do wonders at the box-office and I hope it happens very soon, given hope is the word and we are definitely optimists living for better and brighter cinema. Wait! Not talking about the super bright VFX in Brahmastra. Well, you get the gist!
Overall Rating : 2.5/5