Direction: Raja Krishna Menon
Cast: Akshay Kumar, Nimrat Kaur, Feryna Wazheir
Music: Amaal Mallik, Ankit Tiwari
Cinematographer: Priya Seth
Editor: Hemanti Sarkar
Genre: History, Drama, Thriller
What is it about: This film is based on the true events inspired by the historic evacuation of Indians based in Kuwait by the Indian Government during the Gulf-War back in 1990. It is directed by Raja Krishna Menon and has Akshay Kumar playing the lead along with Nimrat Kaur.
Why it’s disappointing: Airlift had great potential to emerge as a movie to go on shelves. But it lacked too much in terms of narration, which brought down the spirit of it. The film was too lazy to get your attention and invoke that feeling, which was required. It’s based on the horrific invasion of Iraq on Kuwait and the trauma people went through that time. A subject which required a raw deal was mellow packaged making it soft.
You keep finding ways to make yourself to like it, but it keeps letting you down. There were so many instances in the movie which turns in to a Bollywood, forgetting the root of the subject. Director was too lazy to come out of the comfort zone in making this a convincing one.
Nimrat Kaur was just average, she hardly had any scope to perform. The rest of the supporting cast were fine but lacked character and doesn’t register. The thought went in making the technical aspects right should have been balanced on the screenplay as well, if done so could have saved the day.
What to watch out for: The film had great production value, the money spent on making it look good was justified with great re-creation of locales in Kuwait at that time. Cinematography was well mounted with sharp lens work by Priya Seth. The background score was racy.
As far as performance is concerned Akshay Kumar did a great job, who brought a great character to the role playing it right. He even learnt Arabic for the role, making it a convincing one. As Ranjit Katiyal he did a commendable job. He tried his best to carry this film on his shoulders.
Following to that Prakash Belawadi did a great job in cracking the audience up with his annoying antics in the movie. Which in fact lightened the mood in the film.
Verdict: Airlift works in parts, does not soar at any point. It does have its moments but fails to retain them. Raja Krishna Menon had a strong story to tell, but couldn’t execute the same maintaining its intensity.