'Commando 2' review: Smart action goes over the top
The Black Money Trail takes on a contemporary issue and packs slick action sequences but turns too absurd too soon.
That Commando 2: The Black Money Trail calls for suspension of disbelief is a given; after all, we are talking of a one-man army against a corrupt system with tentacles across the world.
As physical settings go, the film indeed has a global footprint - from India to Taiwan to Malaysia to Thailand to Dubai, and more.
Commando 2 also presents a very contemporary issue; this could be the first that talks of the demonetization of the Indian economy and the government's recent all-out war against black money.
The film's makers say that bringing back all the black money stashed abroad would more than eradicate poverty and also drive all of India's development needs. While simplistic, the nobility of intention cannot be doubted.
And so starts the journey of Karan (Vidyut Jamwal), returning after the success of Commando: A One Man Army, this time assigned to a special cell, which operates in a non-descript workshop with Adil Hussein playing the chief.
The introduction of Karan, through the film titles, is on all-out action mode. He does what all the superstars put together in their entire film careers might have done in flat five to seven minutes. (Well, we exaggerate, of course).
Anyway, the stunt sequence is sheer daredevilry. There is nothing not left for Vidyut to do: climbing walls, sliding on floors, chops, blows, kicks, you name it, he does it.
There is an inherent smartness in the film in the characterization too. Even while playing with formula, director Deven Bhojani and writer Ritesh Shah, based on a story by Suresh Nair, tries to give it a level of fresh quirkiness.
While it might appear a bit grating with time, the characterization of Bhavna Reddy (Adah Sharma), for example; she is a cop, who we are told, 'killed an underground goon for a Gucci bag.'
Bhavna is part of a four-member team assigned by the Home Minister (Shefali Shah) to bring back the notorious Vicky Chadda, the middleman for all politicians and heavyweights in stashing black money. Karan infiltrates the team that is headed by Baktawar (Freddy Daruwala), a loyalist of the home minister.
The team is swayed by the sob story of Vicky, as narrated by Maria (Esha Gupta), his wife, and soon there is an elaborate spin of crossings, double crossings and more.
The smartness that the film had been cultivating soon descends into over-the-top levels of absurdity, and you give in to just watching the action and the killing machines on the go.
The film does not call for emotional connect; it wants to offer you some comic-book like adventure. We are also not called on to vouch for the acting chops of the cast; so even if they appear a bit lost in some of the few 'deep' scenes, it is excusable.
Vidyut and Freddy, despite the film's narrative flaws, come through as actors who can hold a movie together with their action, looks and brawn-power.
Commando 2: The Black Money Trail delivers what it promises to a great extent; but for its genre, it could have been a lot more effective and smart. What it lacks is the slickness quotient that makes for great action movies.
| Commando 2: The Black Money Trail|
Starring: Vidyut Jamwal, Adah Sharma
Directed by Deven Bhojani
Now playing at theatres in the UAE