Besides the intriguing bahu-spy premise, the film presents nothing new to inform the genre: spies have feelings, spies get sappy, spies cry. Even Bond films show us that these days. Gulzar does commendably depict how the other side is just like us - there is a rather clever use of the song Ae Watan, a patriotic track sung with equal fervour from both sides - but is the mere fact that this film does not thump its chest enough for applause?
Raazi is an excellent film because of how easily it could have not been one. On another day, this might have well been a jingoistic Neeraj Pandey actioner called Naam Sehmat. But Gulzar and her co-writer Bhavani Iyer don’t lose cultural context of their material.
Intense, emotional and unnerving at the same time, the sensitivity and emotional quotient of the characters- especially Alia’s Sehmat makes Raazi a gripping watch that keeps your mind and heart on the edge, till the end.
Meghna Gulzar paces the film well, fleshing out the characters who make up the Sayed family, into which Sehmat is married, and then gradually turning up the tension as the bride’s cover wears thin.
The actors sometimes falter with their accent and dialect, but intrigue around Sehmat’s adventures doesn’t give them much time to complain. Raazi is a sensibly written and finely performed film that takes a close look at the ordinary lives of extraordinary people. Not to miss.
Raazi boasts of some splendid performances by even those who have small roles.
Raazi celebrates the spy-thriller genre and proves good content prevails. Perhaps, a lot of aspects make this film unapologetically finest of 2018 so far.
Oddly enough, everything Raazi cannot explain or put a finger on, it glosses over in the name of patriotism or watan-love; glorifying thereby the very sentiment it had set out to mock.This is the unique tragedy of the film: it becomes less of a counterpoint to pseudo-patriotism and more of a companion piece.
Despite its shortcomings, “Raazi” has a lot going for it, especially its leading lady. If you are willing to suspend your imagination a bit, it can make for a fulfilling watch.
‘Raazi’ defies the spy genre’s traditional expectations of full-blown action sequences. Instead, Meghna Gulzar’s steady hand gradually ramps up the tension throughout, leading to an explosive final act in this strong dramatic thriller. It also leaves you questioning the repercussions of war on the human psyche.
Alia Bhatt-Vicky Kaushal starrer will blow your mind!
Raazi is tightly paced and slick in its first half. It keeps you on the edge right till the time the lights in the theatre come back and the screen says 'Intermission'.On the other side of that break, however, lies a not-so-impressive story. Raazi falters in its second half. The pace is compromised in taking care of the loose threads. Emotions teeter on the brink of melodrama but are pulled back in time, thankfully.
Raazi never deviates from its mission to reiterate the patriotic fervour of its leading lady who happens to be a Kashmiri. It's a fascinating situation but little screen time is given to explore the family backdrop. Because as Raazi reminds us, all is fair when it's a matter of motherland.
All said and done, Raazi is a magnificent and unmissable tribute to the unsung heroes of our country. It explores a brave story which was in shelves for long time now. Alia Bhatt has just smashed every barricade for being a superlative actress.
RAAZI is an interesting thriller brilliantly narrated by Meghna Gulzar that makes for mature viewing. It is a film that celebrates nationalism that is devoid of the colors of religion. At the box office, it has the potential to grow with positive word of mouth and keep its makers happy.
It won't be wrong to say that it's one of the most fiercely patriotic films you'll ever see. That a female star holds centre stage makes for a welcome change. Alia Bhatt’s histrionics alone are worth the price of the ticket.
Audience Reviews for Raazi
Espionage, spies and political turmoil form the essential backdrops of Meghna Gulzar's 'Raazi'. But it takes passion for cinema and a keen observation on the writing to make the film a solid thriller. Raazi succeeds in that aspect, and once again after 'Talvar', Meghna proves yet again that she can make an intimate, personal drama which interweaves around the so-called sensational events.
We hear of a lot of martyrs all our lives- the great men who sacrificed themselves for their countries. But seldom have we heard of many of those people who risked their lives for the triumph of their countries. Based on Harinder Sikka's popular novel 'Calling Sehmat', the film is based on the life of Sehmat Khan, a twenty-two year old Delhi University student and the daughter of Hidaayat Khan, an Indian spy. Hidaayat, after getting his sharp-minded daughter trained, gets her married to a Pakistani Major General cum friend's son.
And the reason behind this is crystal clear: Sehmat is a spy working in Pakistan with other Indians there, delivering each and every information about the enemies' actions to the motherland.
But the film also visually constructs around the emotions of this daughter-in-law, who is a spy. There is this sweet love story of Sehmat and her husband Iqbal, which in the more emotional bits in the end, makes you actually feel for them.
The cinematography, although all dazzle, actually lifts off the screen. Jay I. Patel has dazzled the film to make it ring contemporary. The costumes, designed by Maxima Basu, are never old-fashioned. The acclaimed fashion designer stays far, far away from those 'Om Shanti Om' long suits and 'Action Replayy' long pants with crop tops. The fashion is simple and nuanced, and according to the regular style in 70s.
And the most important triumph of 'Raazi' lies in its simplistic but layered screenplay. The film starts in the seething political turmoil but builds on the emotional strengths quite more effectively. But the film doesn't compromise on the spy-thriller genre too, which is at top of its game.
Alia Bhatt is the most convincing performer in the film, topping the role of Sehmat Khan with grace and sincerity. Jaideep Ahlawat is marvelous as Khalid, the trainer of Sehmat.
The film impresses with its ingenuity. When Sehmat, as the music teacher of a Pakistani army school, teaches a patriotic song to her pupils for the rehearsal of the upcoming Pakistani independence day, she is filled with nationalistic fervor, teaching the students with the of pride and smile as she would have had it been India.
Instead of chest-thumping patriotism, the film, unlike the highly problematic 'Naam Shabana' takes no sides. The film doesn't demonize Pakistan, our enemy, and humanizes the daily life there: how they do their jobs as much as us. It is one of those rare features which take no sides.
So its a 4/5 for Raazi. I recommend the film, because it is the most compelling as well as the best Hindi film till now this year.
A thoroughly enjoyable espionage flick that has the right amount of all the requisite ingredients, Raazi succeeds as that rare Bollywood thriller you never saw coming. Watch it while you hang your thinking capabilities for tomorrow’s work. TN.
good script of real story. expected few stunning scenes.
The biggest problem with Alia Bhatt is that she is very powerless.