Shershaah is a Hindi movie based on real-life war events that happened in the life of Captain Vikram Batra during the Kargil War who received the highest Military medal for a distinguished act of valour during war times - Param Vir Chakra. There are only 21 military persons who have received it to date. The movie was released on the Amazon Prime Video platform on 12-Aug-21. The movie is directed by Vishnuvardhan and this is his debut Hindi movie. You remember him from various great South Indian movies in Tamil and Telugu languages like Kurumbu, Pattiyal, Billa, Panjaa and many more. He also acted in some Tamil movies too. The movie is written by Sandeep Srivastava and produced by Karan Johar, Apoorva Metha, Ajay Shah, Shabbir Boxwala and Himanshu Gandhi. The production companies behind this biographical drama are Dharma Productions and Kaash Entertainment. The movie is 135 minutes long and can be watched with the family and going to inspire the next generation for sure.
Shershaah stars Sidharth Malhotra as Captain Vikram Batra and Kiara Advani as his fiance - Dimple Cheema. The movie starts with the war scene and slowly goes into the flashback to showcase the childhood memories of Vikram as told by Vishal Batra who is the younger brother of Captain Vikram on a TEDx stage. The movie shows the confidence of Vikram from early childhood in a family of 6 with his father and mother as teachers and 2 elder sisters. A reference to the show named Param Vir Chakra is made which inspired him to join the armed forces. Sidharth looks really good in all his scenes with or without an Army uniform. Kiara looked really beautiful as a Sikh girl. The only thing which I noticed is that they were not that comfortable with speaking the Punjabi dialogues. The songs are also in Punjabi language but I loved the music as it sets your heart buzzing.
The initial story shows Vikram chasing Dimple in the university and trying to win her heart. He reminded me of Shahrukh Khan like a charm in DDLJ as he tries to use his charm in every day to day conditions. He then proposes her and faces the problem from her family as she is Sikh and he comes from a Hindu family. Meanwhile, the story moves as he becomes undecided because of various people choices in his family and surroundings. It's a copy-paste of the scenes from Lakshay another movie from the Kargil War. I felt in many scenes that I am rewatching Lakshay with less budget/graphics and not so great character actors. We have Nikitin Dheer, Himmanshoo Malhotra, Anil Charanjeett, Raj Arjun, Rakesh Dubey, Abhiroy Singh, Ankur Sharma, Atul Verma and many others in various army men roles.
Vikram Batra reaches his first posting at Sopore, Jammy and Kashmire and the movie shows how he uses his charm to main friends with his Army colleagues and local Kashmiri people too. Using his sharp skills he saves the life of his immediate boss Captain Sanjeev Jamwal played by Shiv Pandit. He slowly wins the trust of even his Lt. Colonel Y K Joshi played by Shataf Figar. Just before the months of the Kargil war, he visits his home and meets Dimple and his best friend Advocate Amit Sood played by Sahil Vaid. Certain quotes as played in the original TEDx talk by Vishal Batra are shot with Sidharth and used in the movie. If you don't want to spend time watching the movie, then I recommend watching the TEDx talk. Some of the character actors in the movie doesn't look like army personnel and the production house could have taken some good versatile known actors to make this movie much better. This is the reason I mentioned that this one is a limited budget movie as compared to Lakshay.
This movie has some good scenes in the end when Captain Vikram Batra's body is brought to his hometown and that part will bring tears to your eyes for sure. Also, the initial love story and the song thereof is also good. The movie dialogues are not that great to bring inspiration whereas most are taken from Captain Vikram Batra's life which you all know from the newspapers and Barkha Dutt's interviews. A lot of them are there in the TEDx talk by Vishal Batra who is also played by Sidharth Malhotra (identical twin brother) and you will get that from the voice at the start of the movie but the director tries to hide it till the end and only shares the real photos in the end. The interview that made Captain Vikram Batra popular is also shown where he narrated Yeh Dil Maange More! and that is the same thing we wanted as an audience with some good actors also working along with the main hero/heroine.
The story had the potential to being something like Uri: The Surgical Strike to bring the great spirit of nationalism but somehow lags behind. I don't think it's on Sidharth or Kiara, it's more of the character actors who were not given enough context and could not perform up to the levels of Sidharth and Kiara. Even Shiv Pandit who played the role of Lord Shiva awesomely well in another web series on Netflix named Selection Day doesn't fit well in this movie. Overall this movie is a one time watch as it celebrates the life of Captian Vikram Batra and I really loved the 5 songs whose music directors are Tanishk Bagchi, Jasleen Royal, Vikram Montrose, B Praak and Javed-Mohsin. I can also say that this one is the best movie of Sidharth Malhotra and in some of the scenes, he displays the boy like charm as seen in Sushant Singh Rajput movies too. Shershaah is the code name given to Captain Vikram Batra during the Kargil war to communicate back to the base camp with Chanakya Lt. Colonel Y K Joshi.
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