Raid Movie Review: Ajay Devgn And Saurabh Shukla’s Verbal Dual Steals The Show
First things first - Raid turns out to be the movie it is primarily because as a no-nonsense protagonist, Ajay Devgn gets his match in the form of one of the most humane antagonist seen in a Bollywood flick in the form of Saurabh Shukla. If not for the battle of words and wit between the two, Raid wouldn't have turned out to be half as good a film that it eventually turns out to be. This is where one has to give it to filmmaker Raj Kumar Gupta for making Raid the kind of entertainer that manages to bring in applause despite not being set in a quintessential commercial 'masala' mode. The film was always meant to be a realistic entertainer and in that perspective it does well. That said, the start of the film is a little slow, especially because of the love story angle coming in. Agreed that the personal life of an IT officer had to be established. However, even those 5-10 minutes where one sees Ajay Devgn and Ileana D'Cruz exchanging their sweet nothings with a song thrown in as well makes one a tad impatient since you primarily step into Raid to watch the 'raid' in action, and not really love and romance. That is something that happens twice in the second half as well which brings down the momentum. However, what keeps the momentum for the most part of the film, especially in portions leading to the interval point and then immediately after that the verbal duals between Ajay and Saurabh. Each and every time that they come face to face, there are quite a few clap-worthy moments that come in. If initially there is dejection on the part of Ajay, later there is a vulnerable side of Saurabh which is explored, something that contributes to the humane drama that Raid turns out to be. No wonder, it is the dialogue-baazi that gains good brownie points in Raid and also the fact that Raj Kumar Gupta handles these scenes quite well to keep the entertainment quotient on. As a matter of fact there is also an entire episode in the second half of the film where none other than Late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi is shown which adds on to the 80s setting. The conversation between her and Ajay Devgn is something that would go down as one of the most memorable scenes of the film. That said, there are times when you find the narrative to be a tad repetitive. Once it is established that there is black money hidden in the White House mansion (of Saurabh Shukla), there are multiple scenes dedicated to unearthing of more and more 'khazana' at every nook, corner and depth. This too would have been fine if the pre-climax and climax would have been more impactful. Here, it turns out to be just fine when one would have liked to see more cinematic quotient coming into play with a lot more euphoria for the audience. Nonetheless, that is acceptable to an extent as well since the film was always meant to be a realistic entertainer. In that zone, both Ajay Devgn and Saurabh Shukla are in terrific form as they bring their years of experience into play and become the character instead of playing themselves. Same holds good for Amit Sial too who plays an IT officer as well and has an important part to play in the film's storytelling. So yes, if you want to watch a true story unfold on the big screen, go and give Raid a watch. You would come back content with the experience.