Satya – an inside view of underworld
Company – an overview of underworld
Contract – NO viewpoint on underworld
That precisely summarizes Ram Gopal Varma’s third installment on the underworld trilogy. Rather than a story detailing the intricacies of the underworld operations like the earlier two episodes boasted of, what RGV actually attempts here is revisiting the classic Don (as if Sholay wasn’t enough) with the story of a man infiltrating the gangland while adding his regular ruffled ruffian characters.
ACP Ahmad Hussain (Prasad Purandare) asks ex-military commando Aman (Adhvik Mahajan) to work as an informer in an underworld gang and tip him with lethal information. Aman refuses and ‘coincidentally’ loses his wife and kid in a terrorist attack soon after, which makes him change his mind. That’s the most conventional character conflict employed since years!!!
What follows are ingredients common to any underworld drama. Two gangs. One gang-lord, gang-war, encounter specialist, police commissioner, corrupt home minister, so on and so forth. In surplus you also have a gangster’s sister who is impressed by our hero’s attitude of mouthing a dialogue in every line. You don’t expect a line like, “Kya tumne kabhi kisi se pyaar kiya hai?” in an RGV film but Ramu just does that and serves you the unexpected. That gives way for the obligatory love story.
The heroine (Sakshi Gulati) can’t act but she sure is alluring. Alas Ramu doesn’t even exploit her oomph by making her sizzle on Bangkok beaches. ‘Its not needed’ you might argue but so is their redundant romance track that’s completely incompatible in this crime caper.
The riveting and realistic effect of RGV’s earlier underworld films is conspicuously missing from Contract . That’s perhaps because the scripting by Prashant Pandey comes without any research or references. Scenes are seemingly written to be deliberately different though not credible. An encounter specialist uses silencer on his gun but the victim dies without making any noise. Strange! There’s another gangster who’s perpetually stationed on the sea in his mini-cruiser and his family comprises of intelligence officers and a spice-girl with whom he squabbles at the slightest provocation. We are equally provoked from their outrageous bickering.
Another major flaw of the film is that while it claims to show the alliance of underworld and terrorism, you hardly seem to decipher their correlation. The film doesn’t even remotely touch the intricacies of their nexus, modus operandi or technicalities of the trade. In fact this film relegates the terrorist activities of an extremist Osama kinda gang-lord to be politically motivated by a corrupt home minister, over their global jihad movement. Contract ends up being just another action potboiler for its extemporaneous approach.
Technically too, the film doesn’t impress. Ram Gopal Varma employs his regular camera angles but the excessively extreme close-up shots and the inconsistent camera jerks add to your disturbance. Also the grainy-screen feel works adversely. The clichéd climax is set in a mandatory mill compound where the hero terminates all the terrorists, single-handedly.
Adhvik Mahajan plays the regular cold-blooded protagonist who speaks less and acts more. Ramu tries to capture him in many frames as Abhishek Bachchan, thanks to his stubbly look. Prasad Purandare (who was extremely competent in Ab Tak Chhappan ) does well in his small role. Upyendra Limaye hams endlessly while Zakir Hussain repeats his Darling act.
In a line from the film the hero says, “Faisle nahi unke natije galat hote hai” (It’s not decisions, but their outcome that are wrong). That clearly applies to Ram Gopal Varma who should not decide to make any more underworld films as the outcome is surely going wrong. — India Times.