An Important Story, Great Execution & Direction.It's Dark Brave Gripping.
Shahid. Movies like Shahid are made because some stories are important and should be told with utmost honesty possible. Hansal Mehta does an excellent job with a touching and thought provoking story in his hands.
Rajkumar Rao playing Shahid, first a victim and then a savior, is exceptional. Court room drama is kept simple but still succeeds in thrilling you. Family drama is there but is kept concise so that you are not distracted from the main issue. All supporting actors provide ample support to the narrative. Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub playing Shahid's over burdened brother is excellent. A water tight screenplay, authentic setup, the right length, the serious tone, all make Shahid a mini masterpiece.
I am going with fantastic 8 out of 10 for Shahid. Watch it with patience, watch it for its relevance and watch it because some movies are worth watching for their honest story.
This is the one. It is one among us. If anyone wishes to see India, s/he should see its middle-class. For that is where changes happen largely. No society can say it is rich or poor for its belly constitutes the middle order and that is where the true opinion comes from. And the Indian middle-order has the clean, bare and stark look that doesn't need gloss and hits you right in the middle.
You can imprison a body but not the spirit. It is free of all needs and want. A true human being is independent of any religious affiliations. It works for every other human.
SHAHID traces the true story of slain human rights activist and lawyer Shahid Azmi. From attempting to become a terrorist to being wrongly imprisoned under a draconian anti-terrorism law to becoming a criminal lawyer, SHAHID traces the inspiring personal journey of a boy who became an unlikely messiah for human rights while following the rise of communal violence in India. This story of an impoverished Muslim struggling to come to terms with injustice, inequality and rising above his circumstances is an inspiring testament to the human spirit.
Raj Kumar Yadav brings out this middle-class angst. He is not playing a role, he is living it. He is Shahid. The torture comes alive through him. His life has been wasted. He has been wrongly implicated. How will the society accept him? But he flows against the tide and shows if one is determined, then the world is his oyster. To keep sanity, when everything is going wrong is portrayed so vividly that the viewer feels it is a piece of everyday life. There is no crass glamour. The courtroom drama and false verdicts are portrayed as they are delivered. But the system produces someone to counter it. Could anyone have played it better than Yadav? The answer lies in will there be another movie of SHAHID's calibre?
Credit should also be given to director Hansal Mehta for having the conviction to go ahead with the project and bringing out a gem that will be appreciated for ages to come. He makes the viewer live through the movie and come out hopeful. This year cardboard heroes were rejected. And larger than-life-movies bit the dust. But the middle class hero came alive with KAI PO CHE (Sushant Singh Rajput) and SHAHID continues the trend for Yadav. The Indian hero has arrived.
If you want to steel your determination and live as per your convictions, then go ahead and see how life can turn out for a junooni. Akela chana bhaad phod sakta hai. There is nothing right or wrong. There is only a middle-path. And that could be fatal too. Will you take a chance? I did. I watched the movie. I identified with Yadav's portrayal. The movie shines solely due to his presence. Rest everything is inconsequential. And can only say,
Uchhal kar woh nahin chalte, jo maahir hon kisi fan mein
Chhalak jaate hain paimaane, hamesha chhote bartan mein.
Small movie. Big impact. The arrival of a middle-class hero, where the spirit of India lies. Get going.