Anand Kumar directed ‘Zila Ghaziabad’ is neither seems to be related to Ghaziabad, nor does it impresses the audience despite presence of a gang of popular and talented actors.
Neither the indoor sets nor the exterior backdrops bear any resemblance to any known structure or landscape in any part of the district of Ghaziabad. But still the movie claims its story is based on a real event that took place in the 90s in ‘Zila Ghaziabad’, or in the district of Ghaziabad.
The film takes much inspiration from ‘Dabbang’. The story is easily predictable and nothing new in it.
The story – The film opens with a ‘train-loot’ sequence like ‘Sholay’. This time the gang of robbers is led by Mahendra Fauji (Arshad Warsi).
Mahendra Fauji is a henchman of Ghaziabad’s political figure called ‘Chairman’ (Paresh Rawal). He loots travelers and even police officers, including their guns. He is heading a gang. The opposite gang is led by Satbir Gujjar (Vivek Oberoi), a well educated teacher and wants everything to be in place.
Chairman favors Satbir because he knows that what his goons’ gun can’t do, can be made through the educational background of Satbir. So the wicked politician is interested to make him his son-in-law.
But there is another baddie, the Chairman’s brother-in-law (Sunil Grover) who is also very much interested for the girl. He is jealous of Satbir’s personality, as he could also be Chairman’s future son-in-law too; for which he takes advantage of a minor fight between Fauji and Satbir and fuels them to rise against each other. When the quarrel gears up to lethal level, Satbir’s elder brother, an army Officer (Chandrachud Singh) becomes the first prey.
Soon this rivalry turns into a big riot and the two become thirsty for each other’s blood. Even a leading news channel leaving behind all the national news, covers their story.
Now, an able cop Pritam Singh (Sanjay Dutt) enters to the scene. He is transferred to Ghaziabad to pin down the goons. The story takes another twist and Fauji joins hands with Chairman’s top rival Rashid (Ravi Kishan) to kill Satbir. There is no more to discuss as there is nothing precious in the story, just bloodshed, poor action sequences and many more like that.
Performances – Paresh Rawal has been given limited scope to showcase his talent. Thus though he cannot be blamed, the Paresh Rawal factor, which could be a savior, is missing. Similarly, Ashutosh Rana’s character also bears the same fate. Ravi Kishan is superb as a baddie in the film.
Bad news is that even a good actor like Vivek Oberoi is a waste in the film. There is absolutely no chemistry between him and his on screen beloved played by Charmy Kaur. In action sequences, he tried badly to repeat his ‘Dum’ flavors, but it hardly attracts the audience.
Though a small character, Sunil Grover perfectly suits in the role of a cunning mastermind behind the whole riot. The TV actor has been given less chance, but seems good. Minissha Lamba features after a long time but doesn’t get too much footage and so does not impress anyway.
Sanjay Dutt’s stunt looks stupid. He is also very doll as a cop this time.
Though Chandrachur Singh appears for a short span on the screen still he could not be convincing even in that short span.
Arshad Warsi is the man who steals the show. His acting ability cannot be challenged. However, I am afraid, his acting abilities could be explored a bit more. Still if there is something which pulls you back to the seat in the theatre is Arshad Warsi in the film. His character fears nobody and regrets less when he guns down any person.
Music was not absolutely required in the film and it could not help anyway. Music by Amjad – Nadeem and lyrics by Shabbir does not impress either. Even Mohit Chauhan’s touching voice seems wasted in one of the tracks. Music by Pritam is not at par with his caliber.
Equally the cinematography is also not good, but editing table has saved it at many places.
As a whole, Director Anand Kumar has taken up the true story of two gangs of ‘Gujjars’ set in 90’s but in fact becomes a looser as a director, as he could not pull out anything juicy from these big Bollywood actors, who have impressed the audience several times.
With too much of melodrama, over the head action sequences and unnecessary stuffing of songs the long span of 2hr 20minutes run time seems much lengthy. Poor acting, weak screenplay and haphazard direction are the content of the film. Even it can’t be termed as a masala flick as the action sequences too miss lot originality.
So, if you are really free enough and have nothing else to do, then only plan to visit the theater.
Cast:Sanjay Dutt, Arshad Warsi, Vivek Oberoi, Paresh Rawal and Minissha Lamba
Director: Anand Kumar
Our rating: ** (2) stars out of 5.