Producer-Director: Anil Sharma
Cast- Sunny Deol, Ameesha Patel, Utkarsh Sharma, Gaurav Kapoor , Luv Sinha and Manish Wadhwa
Platform of Release- Theatres
By Jyothi Venkatesh
At the outset, let me make it very clear that it is amply clear that Sharma’s objective of making Gadar 2 is only just to encash on the current volatile climate of the country, twenty-two years after Gadar saw the light of the day. There is a moment in the film when Tara Singh refers to Partition as a tragedy which people have supposedly moved on from. The year is 1971, a little more than a decade since a million people lost their lives.
If Gadar was set in the period of partition way back in 1947, Gadar 2 is set in 1971, when East and West Pakistan are caught in turmoil. In India, Tara Singh (Sunny Deol) lives happily with his wife Sakina (Ameesha Patel). He still drives trucks, and their son Jeete (Utkarsh Sharma), who wants to be an actor. The film “portrays” this desire by adorning his room with unimaginative posters of Dev Anand and Rajesh Khanna. Decades after he rescued his wife Sakeena (Ameesha Patel) from Pakistan, one man army-truck driver Tara Singh (Sunny Deol) must illegally cross the border once again to save his son (Utkarsh Sharma) from the wrath of Pak General Hamid Iqbal (Manish Wadhwa). The latter holds a grudge against Tara for what he did in 1947.
While the sentiment stemming from loss of lives and brutal aftermath of the partition moved the audiences in the first part, the sequel unfortunately struggles to leave you emotionally charged. The film tries to cash in on the nostalgia factor, filmy over the top dialogues and slowmo action scenes, without a tangible story or thread that can hold it all together.
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With Ashraf Ali (Amrish Puri) no more, Tara Singh finds a new nemesis in Hamid Iqbal, a Pakistani Army General, played by Manish Wadhwa, who ruthlessly beheads people for showing their loyalty for the Bhagavad Gita over Quran and captures and tortures Tara’s son in Pak, who crosses the border in search of his father. The son’s love track in Pakistan with yet another Muslim girl like his mother Sakina, Muskaan (Simrat Kaur) feels absolutely irrelevant and thrust without any logic, as a result of which the sequel comes across like an overstretched remake with an overdrawn as well as meandering plot that goes on for over 2 hours and 45 minutes.
As far as the performances are concerned, all that I can say is that Sunny Deol is endearing and his powerful presence and heavy-duty dialogues do continue to have an impact and of course for fans of the previous film, there is the iconic hand pump scene in this film too, though Sunny does not use it and it is symbolically to drive away the meek Muslims. Ameesha Patel who is shown sprinting as if she is in a marathon race most of the times, doesn’t have much to do except for tearfully waiting for her husband as well as son to come back home. Manish Wadhwa is just about okay. Utkarsh Sharma gets some crucial scenes and is not only pleasant, but also has the screen presence required for his role. The less said about Luv Sinha, the better as he has just been wasted in the film.
All said and done, the film is loud and over the top and on top of it, the credit titles in the end also warn the viewers that yet another part is in the offing.