Action thrillers in Bollywood aren’t many in number. And even when they come, they are spoiled by amateur execution or the forced infusion of commercial ingredients in order to break even at the Box Office. Neeraj Pandey is one of the very few directors who thought otherwise. Instead of following the tried and tested route, he upped the ante with a stellar cast and near perfect narration which left you on the edge of your seat. His latest offering Baby, is no different.
Baby is the story of an ATS group who are lesser known to the common public and work to prevent attacks and blasts in the country. When everything seems to be going right, things turn complex in a mission and it’s up to them to set it straight. Though the story looks simple on paper, the script is built with lots of facts, figures, subtle humour and a lot of logic. One must appreciate Neeraj for his clarity and the knack with which he manages to keep the audience guessing, pinned and smiling at the same time. Though the film is a little lethargic in taking off, it picks up pace post interval and finishes on a high. The final forty minutes are a treat to watch, albeit possessing traces of Ben Affleck’s Argo.
Akshay Kumar walks out of ‘Ajay Singh’ from Special 26 into the ‘Ajay’ in Baby. His script selection has become something interesting to watch out for, as he is ostensibly following the one-entertainer-one-thriller pattern. Present in almost every scene of the film, he comes up with a praiseworthy performance, full of guts. The rest of the cast are used very tactically by the director, with a scoring moment for each. While Rana Daggubati’s macho rises the tempo, Taapsee kicks some ass in her short but stamping role. Anupam Kher’s comics do bring in the occasional laughs as well as Danny and Kay Kay who fit the bill.
Swooping into Baby technically, one cannot help but notice the proficient cinematography with the right use of aerial angles. The chase sequences too, deserve a special mention for both the camera and the stunt choreo. The one and only negative in Baby is the background score which is stale and doesn’t aid the proceedings much.
Neeraj Pandey seems to be getting better and better with every film and Baby has turned out to be one of Akshay’s best too, if you manage to get yourself into the mood. The intensity and thrill has been maintained throughout, resulting in a fun and fulfilling cinematic experience. Watch off, immediately.
Verdict: Baby is both a must-watch and a masst-watch. Outstanding cinema.
4 / 5