Plot: During the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, Tara Singh returns to Pakistan to bring his son, Charanjeet, back home.
Cast: Sunny Deol, Ameesha Patel, Utkarsh Sharma, Simrat Kaur, Manish Wadhwa
Director: Anil Sharma
Ratings: ⭐️⭐️ ½
Review: The magic of the silver screen is that it can transport you to another time and place. In the case of Gadar 2, it does just that – taking its audience back to the 90s. But, i’m saying this in a negative tone. It’s evident from the get-go that this movie isn’t catered to the Netflix-binging, avant-garde consuming audience of today. Instead, it’s a nod to the golden era of Bollywood, when dramatic storylines, and larger-than-life characters reigned supreme.
In terms of pacing, the movie starts off at a languorous tempo. The first half might induce a yawn or two, but hold on, because the action picks up in the latter half. While it does build some momentum, one can’t help but feel that the start was a missed opportunity.
When it comes to performances, the limelight undeniably goes to Utkarsh Sharma. While Sunny Deol, a household name, brings his usual gusto to the table, it is Sharma who emerges as a pleasant surprise. On the other hand, Ameesha Patel, much to the chagrin of her fans, is largely reduced to a teary-eyed damsel. Simrat Kaur adds to the roster with a commendable effort, while Manish Wadhwa dives deep into his villainous role. Though he doesn’t quite touch the benchmark set by Amrish Puri, his dedication is palpable.The music is undoubtedly the film’s silver lining. With stalwarts like Udit Narayan, Arijit Singh, and Vishal Mishra lending their vocals, the movie’s tracks are a treat to the ears.
The soulful strains of the film’s soundtrack provide a breath of fresh air amidst its cinematic challenges. With industry veterans such as Udit Narayan, the hauntingly mellifluous Arijit Singh, and the versatile Vishal Mishra gracing the score, each song emerges as a melodious masterpiece. These artists, with their distinctive voices and unparalleled musical prowess, infuse the film with an emotive resonance that captivates the listener. It’s in these moments, enveloped by their stirring renditions, that the film truly shines, proving that sometimes, it’s the music that can elevate a movie’s experience beyond its narrative confines.
However, while the movie might be sonorous, it falters visually. The direction is, regrettably, subpar. In an attempt to recreate the aura of the original Gadar, the film ends up feeling like a dilute version of its predecessor. Additionally, the visuals are underwhelming. Paired with inconsistent editing and some glaring dubbing missteps, these issues pull the film down a few notches.
What adds to its old-world charm, ironically, also plays against it. The cinematography is reminiscent of the 90s – both a strength and a weakness. While it might resonate with a segment of the audience that grew up in that era, it risks alienating the newer generation. The dialogues, however, do some justice, with their quintessential dramatic flair.
Overall, Gadar 2 is a nostalgic roller-coaster, paying homage to a bygone era of Indian cinema. Yet, in its quest to recapture the magic, it stumbles. It feels like a missed chance, especially given the legacy of the original film. While it won’t resonate with everyone, for those who have a soft spot for the 90s, this might just be a trip worth taking, if only to witness the emergence of Utkarsh Sharma as a potential torchbearer for mainstream Hindi cinema.