Farhan Akhtar Toofaan:
In 2013, entertainer Farhan Akhtar and Director Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra worked together on BHAAG MILKHA BHAAG. The biopic of Milkha Singh got consistent applause and it brought about a box office collection of Rs. 100 crore.
Again after almost a decade, both once again come together for a film, TOOFAAN. This time, Farhan collaborates as producer too, alongside Ritesh Sidhwani, his long-lasting partner. How is this film TOOFAAN going to perform? Would it perform well or disappoint the viewers, let’s find out.
TOOFAAN is the account of a street fighter, how he transforms himself into a top-class professional boxer.
Aziz Ali (Farhan Akhtar), an orphaned kid was raised by Jafar Bhai (Vijay Raaz). He while whipping a café owner (Imran Rashid) over a fight with Jafar bhai, Aziz gets harmed.
He goes to the clinic for treatment where the specialist doctor, Ananya Prabhu (Mrunal Thakur) avoided treating him in the wake of discovering that he’s a small-time goon.
A couple of days after the incident, Ananya observes Aziz distributing presents to youngsters in a shelter house meant for orphans. This makes her understand that he is not what she initially thought but a good man.
At some point, Aziz visits a gymkhana in his area, run by a man called Merchant (Deven Khote). Merchant trains the deserving and aspiring people on his premises.
Aziz observes it and somehow gets into a fight with a player, Parvez (Arhan Chowdary). Rather than hitting back, Parvez commends him for his strength and power.
Merchant sees potential in him, he takes Aziz to Nana Prabhu (Paresh Rawal), the best boxing coach and mentor in Mumbai. Nana gets Aziz to battle with his trainee. Aziz gets crushed and he requests Nana to train him. Nana declines as Aziz being a Muslim.
In the meantime, Nana consents to Aziz and transforms him into a top boxing player. Aziz gets chosen for the state title. This is the time when Aziz (Farhan Akhtar) begins dating Ananya.
After his triumph, Aziz is having a success drink party with Nana when he proclaims that he’s involved with Ananya and that he wanted to wed her.
Aziz had no clue that she’s Nana’s girl. Nana, angrily, slaps Aziz and blames him for conning his girl and excuses Aziz of ‘Love Jihad’. What occurs next structures the overall film.
Farhan Akhtar’s story and Anjum Rajabali’s story is old hat. Such stories of a sportsperson have been seen in many sports films viz., BOXER  to the recent SULTAN , and in Hollywood too of Sylvester Stallone starred ROCKY (1976), RAGING BULL (1980).
Anjum Rajabali’s screenplay is good yet unsurprising. The film is very much predictable but Farhan Akhtar performance and the storyline sprinkled with moments of intriguing moments of laughter saved the day.
In any case, in a perfect world, the story ought to have been novel and the screenplay ought to have been grasping. The dialogues of the film are simple though realistic.
Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra’s direction is top-notch. The star is back after giving flop as MIRZYA,2016. The scenes related to sports and training are fascinating to watch.
It’s really laudable that in the subsequent second half, a large portion of another round of training track is added showing Farhan Akhtar comeback. Indeed, the director has done justice to this and nowhere it felt dull and monotonous.
This film also touches on some relevant issues of society and terms like ‘love jihad’ were discussed.
On the flip side, the subsequent half is the place where the film looks sluggish. The misfortune in the storyline fells quickly and it looks abrupt and a little out of place to digest to watchers.
The length of the film at 161 minutes is on the higher side and the viewer expects some justification for this time but it fails to do so.
In short, TOOFAAN is not a film as its previous genre BHAG MILKHA BHAG.
Mrunal Thakur is the trump card of the film. She has an important character to play in the film and it adds up to the film’s equity. Additionally, her infectious smile is irresistible.
Paresh Rawal is a class in itself and pulls off all roles with ease. Hussain Dalal adds to the film’s humour.
Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s music is frustrating I must say and is one of the drawbacks of the film. In ours view a sport film must be devoid of songs but one or two at max. The title track of the film is the best of all followed by ‘Star Hai Tu’. Both are good to watch. Rest songs failed to make an impression.
Jay Oza’s cinematography is phenomenal and leaves an impact in several scenes. The boxing scenes, especially, are very well captured.
On the whole, TOOFAAN has some powerful performances along with some heartfelt and lovely moments. But the film’s runtime, below average soundtrack and easy narrative, leaves viewers in a lurch.