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THOSE THAT ARE A MUST-WATCH

MOVIE REVIEW: RUSTOM

Based on true events, Rustom is a gripping tale about Pride, Passion and Power, and a man who must uphold his own integrity and that of the nation.

INFO:
Release Date: Aug 12th 2016
Cast: Akshay Kumar, Ileana D'cruz, Arjan Bajwa, Esha Gupta
Directed by Tinu Suresh Desai
Produced by Neeraj Pandey (of Baby & Special 26 fame)

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MOVIE REVIEW ...

THE GOOD....

1. Sets and Costumes: The movie is set in the 1960s, 20 years post independence. Every single set is detailed with the color schemes and decoration style from that decade, all locations have the perfect filter to project the 60s look, all objects- the cars, the phones, the radio, the music players are all in keeping with the period. The clothes, the hairdo and the accessories are well coordinated with the time. In all, every shot is absolutely stare-worthy. Those of you who remember being around even as early as in late 70s would love hearing words like "trunk call" and (you tell us- what other ancient word :) did you catch? )


2. The Cast: The way a film's cast plays out, including the supporting cast, largely determines the strength of the movie. Here Akshay Kumar as Commander Rustom Pavri, Illeana D'Cruz as Cynthia Pavri, Arjan Bajwa as Vikram Makhija, Esha Gupta as Preeti Makhija, Pawan Malhotra as Senior Inspector Vincent Lobo, Usha Nadkarni as Jamnabai, Sachin Khedekar as Public Prosecutor have all done an excellent job.

More specifically, Akshay Kumar's taut form underneath the thick naval uniform oozes of a fit navy officer. His calm composure throughout the movie impresses and his role is undoubtedly a treat for his fans.


3. The Plot: The movie is said to be based on true events. That in itself perks your interest. It plays out well and keeps you interested right to the end. 


4. The Songs: Love the songs, especially Dekha Hazaro Dafaa by Arijit Singh & Palak Muchhal and also Tere Sang Yaara by Atif Aslam.


THE BAD ..

1. Although Illeana D'Cruz (of Barfi fame) has done a good job, again, my objection is with the pairing of a young woman (Illeana is 28) against a much older male lead (Akshay is 48) when both the story line (the real-life Rustom had three children- surely his wife was more than 28) as well as common sense demands a more reasonable pairing! Instead of Illeana, I kept imagining Shilpa Shetty, or Raveena Tandon in the role (okay perhaps that's not a possibility, I mean considering that they are his real wife exes). How about Karishma Kapoor, or Preity Zinta or Sushmita Sen or Urmila Matondkar or Sonali Bendre or Soha Ali Khan- take your pick, Mr. Neeraj Pandey, there literally are countless talented women in the industry who would have done ample justice to the role.

2. If you expect Fugitive kind of action where the accused husband escapes to prove his innocence, you're in for disappointment for this is no action thriller. Lets call it more of a court room drama- interesting nonetheless!

OVERALL ...

For mumbai-kars, Akshay Kumar fans and those who are a sucker for early-era based-on-true-events films, its a no brain-er- this one is a must watch movie. Others, you may wait for the movie to be released on Netflix or other legal portals, but watch it you still must! I would rate the movie PG 13.


HOW IS THE MOVING DOING? 

As per Koimoi, the film has brought in 122.28 crore by week 3. It could well surpass Airlift [129 crore] to obtain the second highest grosser of the year place after Sultan.


HOW TRUE ARE THE EVENTS? 

(Warning! Spoilers here- visit the link or read here AFTER watching the movie)

Remember the movie Achanak from our black-and-white-Sunday-movie days? This movie reminds you of that movie that starred Vinod Khanna. Apparently that is no coincidence. Achanak movie, made by Gulzar, was based on the same true events. According to an article in Indian Express, the movie is largely inspired from the famous 1959 case of KM Nanavati versus State of Maharashtra that changed the face of the India judicial system.

From the same source, here are the facts from the case depicted as it played out-

1. Nanavati was a navy officer, also Parsi, married to English-born Sylvia, who did have an affair with a businessman, Prem Ahuja, while Nanavati was away on long extended assignments.

2. Sylvia actually confessed about her affair when her husband returned. She had realized that Prem was a flirt and had ended the relationship (shown a little differently in the movie).

3. Nanavati did go to the naval base, did collect a gun, and did confront Prem. Prem did say that "he can't marry everyone that he sleeps with" and Nanavati did kill him by firing three shots.

4. Nanavati did surrender and he did plead not guilty in the court. 

5. Nanavati did garner immense support from the Parsi community and the public, who organized various rallies demanding his pardon. 

6.The Bombay session court did pronounce him not guilty.


WHAT HAPPENED TO THE REAL "RUSTOM" (Aka Nanavati) 

Despite being pronounced not guilty by the Bombay Session Court, Nanavati was sentenced to life imprisonment when the case went to Bombay High Court. Later, the Supreme Court also upheld the conviction. However, seeing the huge public support, Prem’s sister Mamie Ahuja was persuaded to forgive Nanavati. She gave her assent for his pardon in writing and Nanavati was released after spending three years in jail. After his release, Nanavati with his wife Sylvia and three children shifted to Canada. He died in 2003. (Source: Indian Express)

By Sonal Kulshrestha

(Sonal is a computer programmer by profession and a writer by passion. She is an avid movie goer. She lives in Texas, USA) 

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