Baaghi 2 Review: Kshanam Redux with a Dash of Rambo
One is given a hint (direct and not subtle) very early on into Ahmed Khan’s Baaghi 2 that this isn’t a film where one should look for logic. A youngster straight out of college spends 4 years in the army & becomes a tough commando, earning the admiration, respect and even fear of some of his superiors. This identity is enough of a convenience to come up with an action sequence in the police station where the army man beats the cops to pulp and later on being tortured, mutters dialogues like “jo bhi tera torture hai, woh mera warmup hai”. After all this when the climax begins & the action heavy Rambo mode comes alive, one is already prepared to face the inevitable. The moment I watched “Kshanam” (the Telugu original on which Baaghi 2 is based) I was sure that a Hindi remake isn’t too far away. I was also sure that the Hindi version would be set up in a much larger scale & that’s indeed what Baaghi 2 is.
The basic plot line isn’t really too different from that of Kshanam. Ranveer Pratap Singh aka Ronny (Tiger Shroff) and Neha (Disha Patani) fall in love during their college days and look forward to a happy future together. But Neha’s dad (Vipin Sharma) does not like Ronny and as he falls terminally ill Neha decides to marry someone of her father’s choice. Ronny goes on to become an army commando and lives cut-off from the outside world. 4 years later Neha gets attacked by a couple of unknown guys outside her daughter’s school and they end up kidnapping the daughter. With no one offering any help, including her husband and the cops, Neha reaches out to Ronny for help, in a last ditch effort to get back her daughter. Thus Ronny lands up in Goa to help Neha, no prizes for guessing how he goes about managing the task.
For a remake it’s strange to see that there are 3 writers (Ahmed Khan, Abbas Hierapurwala and Niraj Kumar Mishra) involved in Baaghi 2 and yet the result is far from satisfactory. The dialogues are pretty corny, they make one wonder if the attempt was to make every moment “larger than life”. The completely re-worked climax is a huge disappointment, the build-up to the same & the actual execution doesn’t end up creating the desired impact. The antagonist’s reasoning for having gone rogue and the manner in which Ronny becomes a one man army decimating hundreds of men in a robotic fashion makes you wonder if the whole exercise was just an attempt to give us a sneak preview of Tiger Shroff’s official Rambo adaptation that is in development. The songs are all conveniently placed; a flashback sequence is introduced like an afterthought of sorts to showcase Tiger & Disha’s dance moves. There is no point writing anything about the re-worked “ek do teen” track, it’s a song which only makes you yearn for the original even more.
The supporting cast of the film boasts of some popular names including Deepak Dobriyal, Manoj Bajpai, Prateik Babbar and Randeep Hooda and to give credit to Ahmed Khan, all of them do receive good screen time but do not really impress as such. Randeep Hooda seems to have had a blast as LSD, the cop in a hippie avatar, though he does blatantly go over the top frequently. Prateik Babbar as Sunny appears to be a case of inspired casting in a way. Disha Patani appears pretty and that’s about it, failing to do justice to the emotional moments. Tiger Shroff as expected plays a character that is well within his comfort zone, there is nothing exceptional or wrong about his performance as such.
Overall Baaghi 2 is a review proof film of sorts that would find takers among the audience, but does it leave the discerning viewer satisfied, probably not.
Baaghi 2 is a larger than life adaptation of Kshanam which doesn’t completely do justice to the original. The only take away from the film could be Tiger Shroff’s increased box office clout.