Let’s begin by saying that happy days are here again! Frankly, any movie released in September and October were complete bores, so it is refreshing that November came with a bang, and December releases are upon us. If a few weeks ago, we had some interesting flicks like Veer-Zaara, Aitraaz, and the re-release of Mughal-E-Azam, this week marks the anticipated flick, Musafir.
I never was a real Sanjay Gupta fan, but his 2002 film Kaante proved he knew how to get a talented cast and show off some style on the screen. I personally hate it when release dates get changed (and this film was no exception), so does it live up to the expectations?
Yes, its one big thrill ride. I was ecstatic to see my favorite actor Anil Kapoor finally star with Sanjay Dutt (because they are both versatile in their acting).
So what’s Musafir all about?
Well, we have this social reject Lucky (Anil Kapoor), who is probably one of the most unlucky guys in the world. Lucky is unstable in jobs, does some crime here and there, but he wants some change. He wants to settle down with his girlfriend (Koena Mitra), but is she up for it? Nope, she double-crosses him and Lucky’s world is turned upside down.
He gets stuck in a vicious cycle. Lucky gets in trouble with a durg lord named Billa (Sanjay Dutt), who wants his money, and Lucky has no choice but to abide to his command. Lucky also gets a task to kill Sam (Sameera Reddy), who is married to Luka (Mahesh Manjrekar). Lucky manages to get Billa’s money, but somehow loses it. To top it off, he is attracted to Sam, and is being hunted by a crazy cop (Aditya Pancholi). Man, does Lucky has his work cut out for him.
Its best if I don’t reveal anymore, because you want to be a musafir (traveller) on Lucky’s unpredictable journey.
Yes, it might have some shades of the Hollywood flick “U-turn”, but its slick, fast-paced, and thoroughly entertaining. Nonetheless, the female audience, may not find some suggestive skin scenes and violence necessary, but it gels well with the theme of the film.
On to the performances...
Being in his late 40s, Anil Kapoor shows he can still act (he is far from playing older roles at this age). He is truly one of the most underrated actors in Bollywood. His look and overall characterization of Lucky is one of the best roles he’s had since Pukar (2000).
Sameera Reddy was surprisingly quite good. She has acted in very few films. In her debut film, she played a timid college girl. She has made an excellent transition to main-stream cinema with her bold take on Sam.
Musafir would be incomplete without Sanjay Dutt. He makes the film move forward, just when the pace is about to slow down. His role is not as big as I imagined, but good altogether.
The supporting cast is competent in their roles. Sanjay Gupta excels in developing his characters and letting them getting into the actual role, without restrictions.
Music by Vishal-Shekhar is fantastic, with Ishq Kabhi Kariyo Na and Saaki being the pick of the lot. They deserve nominations for this album.
Dialogues scores big points in Musafir. The conversations are fast and different from other films. You have the “mob” lingo and badass type of dialogues, which may not be popular to some viewers, but it kept me glued to the screen. Action sequences were also thrilling.
It cannot be denied that the film has some flaws; at some intervals, the film got a little bit slow, but as mentioned, Sanjay Dutt came in with a punch to save the film. Also, some people may not understand the plot twists and how can one man be so unlucky, but that’s the irony of Anil Kapoor’s character.
Overall, give this film a chance because lets face it, 2004 has not been the best year for films, yet Musafir can be added to the list of good films where the filmmaker took his time to bring an interesting tale to the big screen. Enjoy!