2 Hrs 18 Mins | Action | 05-08-2022
Cast - Nagarjuna, Sonal Chauhan, Gul Panag, Anikha Surendran, Manish Chaudhari Others
Director - Praveen Sattaru
Producer - Suniel Narang, Puskur Ram Mohan Rao, Sharrath Marar
Banner - SV Cinemas, North Star Entertainment
Music - Mark K. Robin, Bharatt-Saurabh
After doing an author-backed role in Brahmastra, Nagarjuna returns to the lead role with The Ghost for which he teamed up with director Praveen Sattaru. The film promises to be an action thriller laced with family emotions. His previous attempts – Officer and Wild Dog – weren’t fruitful enough. Did Nagarjuna deliver this time around?
Vikram (Nagarjuna) is an interpol officer who wiped out the underworld mafia in Dubai. He is called The Ghost by the crime syndicate. After getting retired, he learns that his closed ones in India are in danger. Anu (Gul Panag) and her daughter Aditi (Aniksha Surendran) are important to Vikram since he was raised by Anu’s father (Jayaprakash). Vikram is on a mission to save Anu and Aditi who’re chased by their rivals for their company Nair group. Did he save them? Did he find the culprits?
Nagarjuna is not new to cop roles. But his role Vikram in The Ghost is different from his previous ones. Nag carries off the film on his shoulders. It is his show. He does the action scenes with ease. Sonal Chauhan as Preeti is alright despite limited on-screen presence. She is glamourous and also fights goons when the protagonist needed. Vikram and Preeti’s relationship look unconvincing where she disappeared initially and later lands up in the latter half. Gul Panag as Nagarjuna’s estranged sister gets noticed with her acting. Aniksha Surendran gets meaty role as the film revolves around her character and she does justice to her part. Manish Chaudhari as villain leaves no impact. He looked weak. Srikanth Iyengar gets another typical role. Ravi Varma is okay. Praveen got good cast on board but he couldn’t offer roles with depth.
The Ghost gets decent marks with the writing. Though nostalgic, the best part of the writing is it doesn’t deviate from the main story. Yet the film suffers with its execution. Director Praveen Sattaru offers not fully developed film. He couldn’t go deep enough that is required for such RAW films. Cinematography and background score elevate the film. Production values are rich. The action episodes are lavishly shot. The Goa song should be scissored mercilessly since it obstructs the flow.
Lack Of High Moments
First things first, Nagarjuna’s The Ghost is not novel in terms of its plot. In fact, it has several nostalgic moments where it reminds us some erstwhile RAW/cop films. From characters to body language to their characterisations, there is typecast and cliches. Yet, the film has subtle treatment that makes it sustain for large part. On the surface, Praveen Sattaru’s idea of The Ghost seems pretty decent. But it failed in the execution. The film lacked high moments. Barring some gunfire scenes, it has no appealing action blocks either.
The problem with The Ghost is in its first half where it is all hastily set-up for the bigger challenge, but when it does, it turns out to be ordinary, nothing exceptional. It is all predictable. Vikram has a haunted past involving mental trauma. But it doesn’t add any value to the film despite the backstory. There is a dialogue of Nag in the film where he says he wouldn’t had reached the stage hadn’t his father took his profession personally. As the story progresses and dots get connected, it gets better.
It is the second half where the real story lies in. There are moments that saved the film. Particularly, there is honesty in Vikram’s motive and operation. He is fighting for a cause and he has personal connection. The film manages to sail through, thanks to Nagarjuna. The liberties are taken – Vikram lands up in saving Aditi in Goa and also none of the bullets fired at Vikram and Aditi touch them whereas goons drop like flies. Scenes like these make one disconnect and expect superior thinking, writing.
The film is full of guns, goons, glamour and gunfire. But no, not all the films that boast action episodes, merciless gunfire and wastage of bullets would become Yash’s KGF 2 or Kamal Haasan’s Vikram. Director Praveen Sattaru comes up with very average and okayish film. The climax is routine. Having said all the above, The Ghost is nothing but old wine in new bottle. It falls short of expectations.
Bottom line: High Style, Low Substance!