For a long time Film producers in 90’s thought that making a film showing India-pak rivalry and in the end making India win was a formula to a hit movie. They gave a sense of patriotism to the audience and that’s where producers made money. But somehow in early 2000s this trend went away with a few flop movies. The current trend in Bollywood is somehow has become modernized where people watch good movies with new content and good writing. And directors are also now taking a risk to make movies with inspiration from real life events or books. This has for sure come from Hollywood but as long as the content of the movie is good, we still appreciate it.
Airlift is the new gen Bollywood movie, based on the real life incidence during Iraq-Kuwait war, where the biggest civil operation of evacuation of Indians based in Kuwait was carried out during the reign President Saddam Hussein of Iraq. It is believed to be the largest civilian evacuation in history where 1,70,000 Indians were airlifted from Jordon to India. The narrative of the film starts from August 1, 1990 when Iraq president Saddam Hussein attacked Kuwait. Ranjit Katiyal is a business tycoon of Kuwait, with everything he wants in life along with a wife and a cute kid. Although he is an Indian by birth, he still thinks himself as Kuwaiti and is set in all Kuwait ways and lifestyle. He is celebrating is victory over a big business deal but the same night, Iraqi forces attack the city and are running a riot. Now he is left with nothing, his driver is murdered in front of him and the only thing which is saving him from the brutal Iraqi force is him being Indian.
The plot of the movie is gripping, the story telling is immensely engaging. The director Raja Krishnon menon, without wasting time in hush hush, 10 minutes into the movie we are in the middle of war in Kuwait. The performances of the lead actors and the ensemble cast are believable and great. Akshay Kumar yet again proves that he isn’t lesser than any Khan or Bacchan of Bollywood. Akshay impresses with his acting prowess, which comes from a place of initial reluctance, following into a slow acceptance of the situation, and the gradual taking charge because there is no one else that can do the job. Nirmit Kaur in her second film in Bollywood does justice to the role, so does the support cast including Prakash Belawadi, Inaamulhaq and Purab Kohli. Be it Prakash Belawadi who comes in the form of a cynical, old man who is simply not ready to acknowledge the Katiyal’s efforts or Inaamulhaq’s Iraqi soldier who enjoys the sudden turning of power equations or Purab Kohli’s ever-dedicated and silent character – they all make Airlift a far more relatable affair.
The movie Airlift has made some stir with respect to the facts they have shown. Some officials of Ministry of External Affairs have criticized the movie because of its lack of ground work and showing the facts twisted. The movie was because of undisclosed reasons banned in Kuwait. But Kudos to Akshay Kumar to pick such a different type of film and topic to pick as a producer. And is has paid him off as well, Airlift is the first movie of 2016 to join the 100 crore club.