'Shadow' - blind hero Nasser proves many a point (Film Review)

By Joginder Tuteja

Film: "Shadow"; Director: Rohit Nayyar; Cast: Nasser Khan, Sonali Kulkarni, Milind Soman, Hrishita Bhatt, Sachin Khedekar, Sameer Aftab, Vishwajeet Pradhan, Soniya Mehra; Rating: **

You know for sure it's B-Grade cinema you are venturing into. Especially with as many as three item numbers, one Bond-esque title track sequence and a 90s style 'rabba mere rabba' love song waiting to unfold. Still, you want to see what exactly did actor Nasser Khan mean when he hissed in the promos -- 'Mission To Poora Hoga'?

In this context, the mission indeed got accomplished, at least for Nasser, since he proved to the world with this film that nothing is actually impossible. Despite being blind, he comes up with a full-fledged hero's part where he kills, dances, indulges in comedy, gives instructions as 'the boss', performs stunts, gets sentimental about his 'zameer' and challenges cops.

Does he perform well? No. Does he deliver? Yes. And this is where the difference lies. He knows his limitations and hence doesn't allow many expectations to be built around him. So whatever minimal he delivers for the camera, it only appears to be an added incentive.

So much so that he kills builders in Mumbai, gets good media coverage, charges as high as Rs.2 crore for a killing, works as a car mechanic in a cover-up job, wears countless disguises, operates through the outskirts of Bangkok and camouflages it as 'aamchi Mumbai'. Not just that, he also makes the woman cop (Sonali Kulkarni) go weak in her knees as she announces in front of her entire department that she is in love with him.

Having said that, "Shadow" moves at a rapid pace. But there isn't anything terrific about the plot or its treatment by director Rohit Nayyar. However, since "Shadow" doesn't come with any expectations, even those routine moments seem good in the context of the film.

Things do slip in the last 30 minutes though. Ideally, the film should have wrapped up soon after Nasser is caught by the cops. However, an entirely new chapter opens soon after as the motive behind him turning contract killer and the flashback sequence is beamed all over TV channels and radio stations.

And there an item song picturised on Sonali Kulkarni that seems completely out of place.

From the performance standpoint though, Sonali tries to be as earnest as possible in the given set-up though she is visibly uncomfortable in her song and dance sequence. Milind Soman does carry a charm with him. Sachin Khedekar plays the quintessential corrupt politician well.

As for Nasser, his act and dialogue delivery would make amateurs confident enough to try their luck in Bollywood. And yet, there is something about him that makes you curious enough to check what "Shadow" is all about.

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