TopYaps Rating: ★★☆☆☆
Frankly speaking, I had zero expectations when I crawled into a popular theatre in Mumbai to watch the comeback film of once celebrated filmmaker JP Dutta. Why so? Because the trailer showed what was on the platter – familiar story, mundane direction and an incompetent cast which seems to have come onboard just to experience how does it feel to wear an army uniform. So, when I finally watched the film, disappointment didn’t hit me that hard. Let me explain to you why Paltan is nothing but just another war film that fails to entertain.
What’s The Film All About?
Before we move on to know why JP Dutta fails to deliver a well-made cinematic piece, let’s know what Paltan is all about. The film revolves around a not-so-well-documented war which India won with China at the Sikkim border in 1967, just 5 years after our country lost a war with them in 1962.
After getting a brief about the current situation at the Sikkim border by his commanding officer, Sagat Singh, (Jackie Shroff), Lt. Col. Rai Singh Yadav (Arjun Rampal) joins Jawans at the border. Fellow officers Maj. Bishen Singh (Sonu Sood), Capt. Prithvi Singh Dagar (Gurmeet Choudhary), and Maj. Harbhajan Singh (Harshvardhan Rane) lend him full support in maintaining peace and avoiding any stand-offs with Chinese soldiers.
However, when Chinese soldiers don’t stop provoking Indian soldiers, the high command orders to fence down the entire border of Sikkim, which used to be an independent kingdom back then. But before Indian soldiers could carry out the fencing task, Chinese soldiers wage a surprise attack on them. What happens next forms the crux of the story.
Is The Film Worth Your Time & Money?
Paltan is one of those Bollywood movies which look good on paper, but when it comes to execution, they become a hotchpotch. Except for the last 25 minutes of the movie, there is nothing I would love to remember about this JP Dutta directorial.
What’s Bad In The Movie?
Director JP Dutta has lost his mojo. If he believes that he can create the same magic which Border (1997), his only successful film, created two decades ago, he needs a reality check. Dutta Saab has failed to keep up with the changing times and that is visibly shown in his latest offering which suffers heavily from its predictable story line, done-to-death presentation, and uninspiring direction. All these shortcomings make Patlan an extremely weak film. Kyun Dutta Saab? Kya zaroorat this iss torture ki?
What’s Worse In Paltan?
If someone is to pen down a book on how to write a sloppy screenplay that makes the audience cry with frustration, kahin door jaane ki jaroorat nahi hai. Guide him where he can take some references from. The screenplay of Paltan is stale. You don’t get to see anything which you have never seen before. Also, there is a string of dialogues which make no sense.
What’s Worst In This Phillam?
Barring Harshvardhan Rane, you cannot find a single actor who makes you feel you are watching a war movie. Film mein koi bhi kuch bhi kar raha hai! Most of the actors act like they are on some picnic. There is no intensity in their performances, and hence you cannot invest emotionally in the movie. There are a few actresses also who appear in blink-and-you-miss-it parts. I don’t get it how the casting director convinced them to do what they have done in the movie. Horrific!
If you miss Paltan in theatres, you miss nothing. It’s certainly not the kind of film you would want to spend your hard-earned money on. But if you have a thing for all sorts of patriotic films, you can give it a watch; else wait for its television premiere and save your money. Bahut mahengai hai bhai!
Still deciding? Watching the trailer might help you:
Banner: JP Dutta Films, Zee Studios
Director: JP Dutta
Cast: Jackie Shroff, Arjun Rampal, Sonu Sood, Harshvardhan Rane, Siddhant Kapoor, etc.
Music Director: Anu Malik
Duration: 154 Minutes