Shah Rukh Khan

Pathaan Review: Shah Rukh Khan Doesn’t Miss A Trick In Phenomenally Entertaining Spy Thriller


Brilliantly entertaining and consistently engaging, Pathan, for all the derivative genre elements it conjures up. Is a spy thriller that crackles with energy. In his first full-length appearance on the big screen since 2018’s Zero , Shah Rukh Khan goes. The distance of riding on the unrepentant and playful charm, delivering an exercise that is at once overwhelming and exciting.

However, the superstar is not the only one who drives Pathan, which plays to the gallery with abandon. Sridhar Raghavan’s writing is smart, though not everything in the gorgeous film makes complete sense. Abbas Tirewala, who peppers Pathan with gunpowder-dry punch lines, contributes little to keep this action-packed movie simmering till the end.

Technically too, Pathan packs a huge punch. Cinematography by Sachith Paulos from Topmost Drawer.

Editor Arif Shaikh lends the film a rhythm that leaves no room for dull passages. And Siddharth Anand’s Palpi panache is impressive. They combine to make Pathan a thoroughly evocative movie that gets the willing suspension of disbelief it demands and thrives.

The ease, of course, is largely facilitated by the presence of Shah Rukh Khan. Who never misses a trick to jettison his King of Romance persona and don the garb of an unflappable, unstoppable action hero. He doesn’t let the effort behind the passage show at all. He sails through roles and films as if this is what he was always meant to do.

The performances of most of the other lead actors – Deepika Padukone, Dimple Kapadia. And Ashutosh Rana – perfectly match Pathan’s style and substance.

The film hits its straps without wasting any time. The actors, especially Deepika Padukone, likewise, get into the swing of things in an instant.

Pathan’s heroine is an ISI agent with a back story that makes her an unknown and unpredictable person. Her mystery traps the hero multiple times and provides the film’s biggest twist. Deepika Padukone pulls off the dual role of an indomitable woman and a committed soldier with elan.

The most interesting aspect of Pathan, a masala entertainer at heart. Is that he has the drive to go beyond the parameters of a grand movie and create sharp, insightful moments that serve as a commentary on important issues of the day. It’s more about humanity than shallow patriotism, coming at a time when the Mumbai film industry thrives on communal demonization to further a dominant political narrative, an act of courage that deserves celebration.

While it’s mainly about going for the people and a villain who plans to unleash a biological weapon on civilians. Pathan takes a pacifist approach to warfare and espionage. It provides a counter-narrative to the Islamophobic thrillers. And historical epics that the Mumbai industry has been dumping on audiences of late without the slightest attempt to disguise its tendency towards bigotry and mendacity.

Pathan is actually a far cry from Yash Raj Films’ earlier spy drama War, which was also directed by Siddharth Anand. Pathan is not linguist nor does it direct all its anger towards one nation.

It opens with a Pakistani general plotting revenge against India on the day of the abrogation of Article 370. But the film’s villain turns out not to be a hate-mongering mullah but a toxic RAW agent.

Although Badman’s reasons are clearly flawed, Pathan contributes his mite to the rhetoric he engages in. A mercenary who works for terrorists, however, says he does not believe in the concept of a nation and borders. It doesn’t matter. Races and boundaries are created by the powerful to subjugate people, he thunders, indicating that he has broken chains to make a point.

Jim (John Abraham), whose first screen appearance sparks a violent confrontation. With a protagonist who grew up in an orphanage and owes a debt of gratitude to an Afghan family that saved him after a secret mission

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