Rangoon is not just a film that has a love triangle set in the backdrop of World War II, it is the first mainstream movie ever made that gives an insight on the Azad Hind Fauj & their nationwide support. Vishal Bhardwaj did justice to the theme and theatrics that bring out the essence of the 1940s.
The combination of fine performances from Shahid Kapoor, Kangana Ranaut & Saif ali Khan, engrossing story and neat direction make little nuances quite forthcoming. Surrounded by sinister Britishers and malfeasants, the subplots of this movie taught core lessons even history books could not teach us- while fighting the devil, an act of individual courage could just change the course of history.
Kangana Ranaut as the stunt heroine caught in a love triangle ensures the glamour is cranked up and the emotional stakes remain in crisp focus. The two men in the movie depicting two sides of the coin threw light on the various perspectives that existed in the society back them before the independence. Shahid as the patriotic soldier Nawab Malik and Saif as the suave Parsi action star turned producer Russi Billimoria were true to their characters giving the audience food for thought in all their scenes. The anxious confusion between their equations does not make them dark or ambiguous, but show emotions very relatable with no exaggeration.
Surprising was the fact that the music turned out to be mediocre. Even more surprising was how without showing any explicit torture of sententious liberal agonizing, Bhardwaj could handle such sensitive material with care. With a tender laid back first half, when the movie picks up in the second half there is no stopping the jitters and feels.
Standing by no political agenda, the movie sure does invest in sparklingly quotable lines to make you feel for the nation. Rabindra Nath Tagore’s national anthem embraced by the Azad Hind Fauj being played and sung in between the movie will make you stand up. Jai Hind!
CAST: Saif Ali Khan, Shahid Kapoor, Kangana Ranaut
DIRECTION: Vishal Bhardwaj
GENRE: Period Drama