Film, Hindi, Review

Jai Gangaajal

Jai Gangaajal looks at the efforts of upright Superintendent of Police, Abha Mathur (Priyanka Chopra), to set things right against the backdrop of lawlessness and political corruption, in the badlands of Bihar.

With director Praksh Jha testing his acting chops by casting himself in the meatiest role in the film – that of rogue cop, Bhola Nath Singh, whose conscience awakens causing him to change sides, you suspect this might be the real reason behind the making of this film. As a result, everything else is relegated to the backdrop including a credible story and even Priyanka Chopra’s central character, who, while supposed to be the lead, ends up looking like a supporting player as the film progresses. This is because the film is much too busy following Singh’s character graph rather than Abha’s efforts to do her duty.  To be fair to Jha, he is definitely better then expected. But that’s about it.

There is little to say about a film that is yet another product within a typical template that Jha has created and not much else.  Not really a sequel to his earlier Ajay Devgn starrer, Gangaajal (2003), except in its continuation of the theme – that of a brave, honest cop who works to clean up the rotten system, this overlong film has little going for it and practically everything about it screams ‘been there done that’. The dialogue is stale and clunky even as it tries to be punchy, the storyline – looking at the nexus between cops and politicians and the rule of the lawless – is much too familiar, its treatment even more so. To make things worse, critical plot points like the turnaround of Jha’s character for instance, are highly unconvincing. In short, there is very little to engage you in the film.

Still, Priyanka does what she can to lift the film. She is sincere, gives the role all she’s got and acquits herself pretty well in the action scenes. But ultimately the script defeats her as it relegates her to the background while indulgently focussing on Jha himself. The supporting cast is adequate with Vega Tamotia deserving a mention as the spunky young girl who holds out from selling her land. Manav Kaul, while fine enough, is getting dangerously typecast and must seriously try and reinvent himself.

The technicalities are so-so and fail to add anything extra to the film. In particular, the background score is loud and terrible and pretty much kills all else in the sound design of the film.

All in all, Jai Gangaajal is disappointing to say the least and is probably the weakest film of Praksah Jha’s career.


Hindi, Action, Drama, Color

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