Fighter Movie Review Rating:

Star Cast: Hrithik Roshan, (why) Deepika Padukone (why?), Anil Kapoor, Karan Singh Grover, Akshay Oberoi, Rishabh Sawhney, Sanjeeda Sheikh

Director: Siddharth Anand

Fighter Movie Review
Fighter Movie Review Is Out! (Picture Credit: Facebook)

What’s Good: This could put a brake on the films that are being planned, backed by jingoistic stories because it’s not 2019 anymore

What’s Bad: Any film that gets privileged by everything and yet fails to optimize hurts the cinema lover in us & that’s why I would pick a HanuMan over this on any given day

Loo Break: Whenever anything is happening apart from the aerial action scenes

Watch or Not?: Only if you want to see a mishmash of everything excellent seen in movies of this genre

Language: Hindi

Available On: Theatrical Release

Runtime: 2 hours 46 minutes

User Rating:

We jump into the formation of an Air Force team that Rocky has groomed (Anil Kapoor). It includes Patty (Hrithik Roshan), Bash (Akshay Oberoi), Taj (Karan Singh Grover) as the Fighter Pilots, Minni (Deepika Padukone) as a Rescue Pilot & they’re called ‘Air Warriors.’ They train to answer Pakistan’s ‘Dhoka’ with ‘Badla,’ but Patty’s ego compromises the mission.

You have this terrorist from Pakistan who looks like the lite version of Karan Singh Grover with long hair, Azhar Akhtar, head of ‘Jaish-e-Mohammad,’ and he’s planning something very deadly to attack India. His plan is so deadly that he forgets it & shifts his focus to capturing a couple of ambushed Indian fighter pilots. From the whole country being in danger, as Azhar himself says, “Ab Jung Hogi,” to completely narrowing the narrative makes it look like the budget didn’t allow that to happen at the last moment.

Fighter Movie Review
Fighter Movie Review Is Out! (Picture Credit: Viacom18 Studios/YoutTube)

Fighter Movie Review: Script Analysis

Ramon Chibb & Siddharth Anand’s story is so predictable that you would be able to foresee what’s going to happen in Fighter 2 as well. In my Fighter Trailer Impact article, I mentioned that this will follow the routine Siddharth Anand formula – The film should feel slick from every angle; the leads should look like they’re ready to win every fashion competition; there should be a beach song oomph up the sensual meter to the max, and the conflict between people who are patriots & people who are from Pakistan. I must say, Siddharth hasn’t disappointed with that, at least.

This clearly proves why Pathaan worked solely because of Shah Rukh Khan. It’s Top Gun meets Uri minus everything good about those films. The ‘interpersonal’ relationship bonding sessions between the team are so poorly written they should’ve let TVF’s Biswapati Sarkar handle those sequences (he has given additional dialogues to the film). The story never builds any deep connection with any of the characters but keeps giving sequences that demand you to feel that connect.

Apart from Patty & Minni, none of the team members get a proper backstory to even feel invested in them. Even Minni’s backstory is so lazily written that you’d start feeling Siddharth just added it only because he got Deepika Padukone on board to play it. Just like superhero fatigue is real in Hollywood, we’re on the verge of facing the same for patriotic films in India. Sorry, let me correct myself here: jingoistic films in India.

Pathaan’s cinematographer, Satchith Paulose, is back with his grandiose style of presenting this, and here he had to play with the aerial action sequences. Because the elevation points are minimal & most of the outside-the-flight action scenes are loaded with heavy VFX, he doesn’t really get much scope to play with cinematography as much as he wanted to. Some of these sequences are really well shot, and some scream green screen.

Fighter Movie Review: Star Performance

Hrithik Roshan hasn’t been used up to his potential, and the fuzzy character sketch makes it difficult for him to rise as a hero. Forget the chemistry he shares with other team members; even his bond with Deepika Padukone isn’t strong enough to feel at least for that if nothing. He could’ve sleepwalked through this role; oh wait! He has sleepwalked through this role.

It’s crystal clear now why Deepika Padukone maintained a safe distance from the film, apart from showing up just for the last few days to promote it. Siddharth has criminally under-utilized her, and you can’t do that to such a solid performer. Apart from a sloppy backstory, she adds nothing substantial to the story, and the only question many would ask her after this. Why?

Anil Kapoor does what Anil Kapoor will if you ask him to perform such a simple character without any range. Karan Singh Grover & Akshay Oberoi, as the supporting characters, are present only to make Hrithik Roshan‘s character look good. Respect for Pathaan’s Jim (John Abraham) increased after watching Rishabh Sawhney’s portrayal as the antagonist in this. Sanjeeda Sheikh has to do what Soha Ali Khan did in Rang De Basanti but without a good story and direction.

Fighter Movie Review
Fighter Movie Review Is Out! (Picture Credit: Viacom18 Studios/YoutTube)

Fighter Movie Review: Direction, Music

Siddharth Anand has taken the proverb “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ too seriously, but he’ll soon have to also think about the DMU (Diminishing Marginal Utility). Not every star can carry films like Shah Rukh Khan & not every film would be like War.

Sanchit Balhara and Ankit Balhara do their best to pump up the dead scenes with a dramatic background score, but the visuals overpower to burden it under its weight. Songs appearing out of nowhere in between an important mission are as intruding as you’d expect them to be. None of them are good enough to give it a listen outside the film.

Fighter Movie Review: The Last Word

All said and done, Fighter is a classic example of cooking a sour dish despite adding all the perfect ingredients. I’m not disappointed after watching the film; I’m just tired.

Two stars!

Fighter Trailer

Fighter releases on 25 January, 2024.

Not into actioners? Read our Kho Gaye Hum Kahan movie review here!

Share with us your experience of watching Fighter.

Must Read: Fighter Box Office Day 1 Prediction: Hrithik Roshan, Deepika Padukone Starrer To Take 25 Crores+ Opening!

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