Bollywood Reviews, Movie Reviews

An Action Hero (2022): The Chase Begins!

“Bahut Mushkil Se Alag Kia Tha…

Apne Andar Ke Neta Ko, Aur Kaan Tute Pehelwaan Ko…

Tu Aaya, Aur Beech Ka Dhaaga Kheech Ke Bhaag Gaya…

Mann To Bahut Hain Tujhe Maaf Karne Ka, Kursi Ki Kasam…

Dikkat Bas Ek Hi Hain…

Pehelwaan Nahi Maanega!”

Starring Ayushmann Khurrana and Jaideep Ahlawat

Starring Ayushmann Khurrana and Jaideep Ahlawat, Bollywood brings you an out-and-out action-thriller which will redefine the concept of violence. Titled “An Action Hero”, this violent action-thriller has been produced by Bhushan Kumar, and written and directed by Anirudh Iyer. It released across theaters worldwide on December 2, 2022.

An Action Hero: Starring: Ayushmann Khurrana. Special appearance: Nora Fatehi. Song: Jehda Nasha

An Action Hero” tells the tale of a Bollywood action superstar who has been accused of murder. He goes into hiding in order to avoid arrest. But will he be able to save himself from the victim’s fearsome brother who is out there searching for him to seek vengeance for his brother’s death? To know more, read my narration of the full story here.

An Action Hero (2022) Official Trailer:

The Good:

Raw Action!

“Put your gun down, and let’s fight hand-to-hand!” This is what we get to see in An Action Hero. The action scenes are raw, thrilling, and exciting. In short, this is a movie for real men. Women and children may not find it too appealing.

Ayushmann Khurrana as Bollywood’s action superstar Maanav Khuranna in An Action Hero

Confrontation scenes between Ayushmann Khurrana and Jaideep Ahlawat are intense. Jaideep Ahlawat as the tyrant politician Bhoora Solanki will for sure give you nightmares with his brilliant acting. His screen presence is amplified by his terrifying appearance. The character of Bhoora Solanki is big and brawny; a murderous guy who is after Bollywood superstar Maanav Khuranna’s blood. His character has animosity, which is evident from the instances where he manhandles Maanav. A fun fact is that Jaideep Ahlawat was asked in a promotional event for this movie, “You are used to playing roles of fearsome goons and henchmen in whatever films you do. What did you actually do before becoming a Bollywood actor?” He and the audience then roared out laughing. Jokes apart!

The action stunts have been choreographed by Ian van Temperley and Stunt Silva. The action stunts in An Action Hero afford a lot of thrill. Gun violence, gang wars, murders, and ferocious hand-to-hand combats, you will witness them all in An Action Hero. The best thing about the action scenes is that they are daring! Here both Ayushmann and Jaideep tell each other to put their guns down and fight like real men, which they did. Let the cops and even underworld mafias go to hell! Nothing’s coming between us when we fight!

Terrific Dialogues That You Are Bound To Remember Forever!

Right: Jaideep Ahlawat as politician Bhoora Solanki in An Action Hero

Presenting some heavyweight dialogues from the movie, which have been written by Neeraj Yadav! One of them, narrated by Jaideep Ahlawat to Ayushmann Khurrana, is what I have mentioned at the very beginning of this review. If you are not familiar with Hindi, I will translate it for you. It means, “I tried my level best to separate my political self and inner He-Man. You came and messed up both. I swear by my political fame that I wish I could spare you…but there is a problem. That is, He-Man won’t listen!” If you are a fan of intimidating dialogues, you will surely understand the meaning of this one. This is intimidation re-defined!

A fascinating dialogue by Ayushmann Khurrana goes, “Ladna Mera Kaam Hain…Sahuk Nahi”. It means, “Fighting is my job, not my passion”.

Rocking Dance Tracks Involving Special Appearances

The music tracks in An Action Hero are rocking. Dancer Nora Fatehi made a special appearance in the fiery track “Jehda Nasha” alongside Ayushmann and actress Malaika Arora too made a special appearance in the groovy dance track “Aap Jaisa Koi”, which is in fact a recreated version of the original track by the same name from the 1980 Bollywood film Qurbani. The introduction of gorgeous dancers like Nora Fatehi and Malaika Arora added color to these rocking musical tracks.

Ayushmann Khurrana and Malaika Arora in the musical track “Aap Jaisa Koi” from An Action Hero

And you will be amazed to learn that the “Evergreen Player” of Bollywood, Akshay Kumar, too made a brief cameo appearance in this movie. His role is very short, but upon seeing him the sound of applause from the audience was everlasting!

Ayushmann Khurrana and Jaideep Ahlawat in a still from An Action Hero

Awesome Camerawork Coupled With Sharp Editing

An Action Hero has been extensively shot across London. The backgrounds of the city of London are fascinating and have been amplified by the high-definition camerawork by Kaushal Shah. The precise and skillful editing by Ninad Khanolkar kept this high-end action-thriller as precise as possible, covering a duration of 2 hours and 10 minutes only. The sequences in the movie have a smooth flow throughout with no diverting instances.

Direction That Deserves An Appreciation

Anirudh Iyer’s direction of An Action Hero truly deserves applause. This is his debut film as a director and I must say, he definitely knows the craft of filmmaking. His narrative style is just awesome!

The Bad:

Ayushmann Khurrana’s Image

Ayushmann Khurrana has marvelously carried himself as the Bollywood action hero Maanav Khuranna in An Action Hero. He has aptly placed himself in the character of Maanav. Reports reveal that he had even undergone martial arts training for this role.

However, there’s something known as an image! Ayushmann Khurrana has played very vulnerable roles in whatever films he has done till now. He had a comical lover-boy image earlier. His first action film was Anek. When it was released, the audiences found it hard to accept him as an action hero. Now, this is his second action film and that too by the name “An Action Hero”!

If you ask me, I would say that Indian audiences are still finding it hard to accept him in such intense action-oriented roles. In spite of a job well done, he may not be favored by the audience. So, I don’t know if it was a wise decision for the filmmakers to cast Bollywood’s ex-lover boy, Ayushmann Khurrana as the protagonist of a serious action-thriller like this one.

Some Flaws In The Screenplay

The story of An Action Hero by Anirudh Iyer is uniquely different which succeeds in captivating the audiences. It is interesting enough to engage you till the end. There are some amazing twists and turns within the story which further add to the thrill. Instances like the introduction of the character of crime lord Mahamod Ibrahim (played by Gautam Joglekar) were a turning point in the story. Gautam Joglekar as the crime lord was fantastic, and he did live up to the character. Further, the thrill was sustained till the very end, as only in the climax we got to know what really happened to Bhoora Solanki.

However, Neeraj Yadav’s screenplay has some minor flaws. I am not saying the screenplay is bad. It is very interesting. But the minor flaws in it may make the story seem a bit unrealistic. Allow me to point out those to you!

Maanav, an action superstar of Bollywood, happens to be a public figure. He is shown absconding to the UK. If you ask me, this doesn’t suit a public personality like him. If he is himself convinced that the death of Vicky Solanki was accidental, then he could have very well considered informing the police about the matter. This was no premeditated crime. So chances of Maanav being innocent in this case were high. He, in fact, made situations worse for himself by running away from the police which made everyone assume him to be a cold-blooded murderer. He needed to have the basic maturity to understand that at some point in time he will definitely be caught. There is no escape from the law. And if he gets caught, then he would have to narrate the same story to the police that it was just an accident. So, why not go to the police and tell the truth now?! Yes, there is always a risk but if he had considered surrendering to the police after the accidental death of Vicky, chances were that things would have turned out in his favor.

The second flaw in the screenplay is what I praised a bit ago. “Put your gun down, and let’s fight hand-to-hand!” Yes, this is a man-to-man fight but, if you think logically, it is direly absurd. Bhoora Solanki who is bent upon avenging his brother’s death should have shot and killed Maanav at their very first confrontation. Instead, in spite of having a gun, he puts his gun aside and persuades Maanav to fight him hand-to-hand. This looks somewhat illogical. I think such weak instances have been put in the screenplay just to elongate the drama.

Another minus point in the screenplay is that there is no female lead! Except for two romantic dance tracks where Ayushmann can be seen dancing with Nora Fatehi and Malaika Arora, who made special guest appearances, there is literally no female casting in this film. Along with action and thrill, Indian audiences love romance, which is seriously lacking in this movie.

The Verdict:

The filming for An Action Hero was wrapped up within three months. It began in January 2022 and ended in March 2022. I believe, the only aspect which may stop the audiences from liking this awesome action-thriller is Ayushmann Khurrana’s image. I don’t know what made the filmmakers cast Ayushmann for such a dynamic action-oriented role. It’s true that the film has some amount of comedy involved which in fact makes it a black comedy. So, the filmmakers might have thought that casting a comical hero for an intense action role might do this film well.

Ayushmann Khurrana and Jaideep Ahlawat on the sets of An Action Hero

But they forgot that there are other heroes in Bollywood too like Vidyut Jammwal and Tiger Shroff, who are made for action! If you are on the lookout for a true action hero for a film which is titled “An Action Hero”, then might as well cast these actors rather than Ayushmann!

But Vidyut Jammwal and Jaideep Ahlawat already had a confrontation in the 2013 action-thriller Commando. So, I think the filmmakers might have decided that it is time for a change!

Whatever the case may be, An Action Hero is for sure a high-octane entertainer. If you are an action and thrill lover, then this is just the movie for you. To see Ayushmann Khurrana take on Jaideep Ahlawat in one-on-one combats, check out “An Action Hero” running at your nearest theaters.

  • Acting - 8.5/10
    8.5/10
  • Cinematography/Visual Effects - 9/10
    9/10
  • Plot/Screenplay - 7/10
    7/10
  • Setting/Theme - 8/10
    8/10
  • Watchability - 8.5/10
    8.5/10
  • Rewatchability - 7/10
    7/10
Overall
8/10
8/10
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