Torbaaz review – Good attempt ruined by a slow and flat screenplay

Title: Torbaaz
Rating: 2.5/5
Reviewed By: Sai Nikhil
Cast: Sanjay Dutt, Nargis Fakhri, Rahul Dev
Director: Girish Malik
Streaming on: Netflix
Language: Hindi

Story: Ex-Indian army doctor Nasser Khan (Sanjay Dutt) lost his wife and son in a terror attack at Afghanistan. His wife runs an NGO to help the war-affected kids in Afghanistan. Nasser Khan visits Afghanistan and finds cricketing interest and talent among the kids and decides to build a team and save them from their agonised lives. How did he achieve this forms the story.

Performances: Sanjay Dutt has done his part neatly. It is very clear that he has aged and is not physically and mentally at his best but his presence brought depth to the film. Nargis Fakhri appears in a small role. Rahul Dev is good as a Taliban leader. All the children, who played the roles of war-affected kids at Afghanistan have done really well and make us empathize with them.

Technicalities: Camerawork is very good and captured several fresh locations in a stunning way. The film has been mostly shot in Kyrgyzstan and the locations and landscape are very much apt as the war-affected areas. Music is good and gels well into the film. Production design and artwork deserve a mention for their work. Editing is okay but length is a concern.

Analysis: The film tries to explore the situation of children in a war-affected country and how the kids are lured into terrorism and what could be a possible solution to all this. The film takes inspiration from Afghanistan, which used cricket to save several of it’s kids from heading in the wrong direction. The film is definitely a good tribute and an appreciable attempt but good intentions alone cannot make a film watchable. The flat and lifeless screenplay lets the film down. The movie is plain from the start to end without any intense moments or moments which offer a high. The cricket match portions towards the end are some of the better moments in the film but even that is predictable. The major strength for the film are the eye-catchy locations and landscape and apt casting of child artists, which are the main reasons why the film manages to hold our interest atleast to an extent. Director Girish Malik should have focused more on the writing and created number of moments which give us an emotional high or feeling of hope and triumph.

On a whole: Torbaaz is a film with good intentions but weak narration. It can be given a shot if you are bored or if you are interested in true stories which depict the struggle to victory.

Rating: 2.5/5

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