Movie Kaabil is a vengeance drama with effective screenplay and performances. Taking inspiration from Hollywood’s Blind Fury (1989) with Rutger Hauer in the lead and even borrowing shades of the Korean super hit, Broken (2014), Sanjay Gupta gives you a Bollywood version that is enjoyable and effective.
What really works in Kaabil is the fact that it has a control over its proceedings from the very first frame till the last. Obviously, Hrithik Roshan dominates the proceedings completely and is present on screen for more than 90% of the duration. There is no time wasted in establishing him as a regular young man next door who overcomes his handicap with his intelligence and the senses available to him. His love story with Yami Gautam is pleasing and you indeed root for them as they fall in love and finally get wedded. But, when tragedy strikes them, courtesy Rohit Roy and Ronit Roy, you heart pains for them.
Director Sanjay Gupta really keeps you hooked on the screen. You fall in love with the couple, stare at the screen in horror as the tragedy reveals and pine for the couple to emerge out of it all. The interval point is tremendous when Hrithik gives an open challenge to the top cop (played by Narendra Jha). Full marks to the dialogue writer Sanjay Masoom for establishing this plot point outstandingly, which manages to catch your attention so very well.
Unquestionably the movie has its own creative freedoms being taken considering its out and out commercial feel. Still, writer Vijay Kumar Mishra does quite well to keep the credibility quotient intact so that nothing really looks out of space. This is the reason why the second half turns out to be truly awesome as the game of elimination has been narrated with greatest care with high drama incorporated in there. As Hrithik begins to execute his master-plan, everything begins to fall well in place.
Now that's what the strong point of the movie since Sanjay manages quite well in helping a viewer connect not just with his lead pair but also the villains of the film. You want the good gentleman to win over evil and it is this very emotional connection in the storytelling that makes you clap along when the revenge begins.
Rajesh Roshan’s music is a tuneful. It incorporates well into the movie, whether it is Mon Amour, title song Kaabil Hoon or Haseeno La Deewana, though one misses the presence of Dil Kya Kare in the final cut. Cinematography (Ayananka Bose, Sudeep Chatterjee) is suitable as per the mood and situation while the background score (Salim-Suleiman) is excellent, particularly in the second half when thrills are added to the drama. Action (Shyam Kaushal) is kept convincing while editing (Akiv Ali) is just precise. VFX is good as at places, it shows!
From the acts viewpoint, Hrithik delivers a brilliant act which has numerous shades to it. His facial expressions and body language say it all and there are numerous scenes where he stands out despite not mouthing a single word. Yami Gautam has a good role and is really there for the whole first half and then also occasionally in the second half. She is decent and natural again. Rohit Roy essays his character in a manner that you feel disgusted with him, which truly solves the purpose. Ronit Roy is awesome as ever and it is delightful to see him portray different characters. Narendra Jha delivers another skillful act.
As a producer, Rakesh Roshan has guaranteed that Kaabil turns out to be a commercial movie for the viewers that has all the right ingredients in place and that too in the right proportions.
Overall, film Kaabil is worthy to watch once for a delightful act of Hrithik Roshan and effective screenplay.