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  • N.Chandra captured the imagination of cinegoers and critics in 1986 with his path-breaking movie-Ankush. He finished the trilogy with Pratighaat and Tezaab in 1987 and 1988 respectively.This was undoubtedly one of the best trilogies ever made in Hindi cinema.After that however he never managed to re-create the magic he did in these movies.

    Although with Style he managed to get the elusive hit he wanted but I guess its Kagaar which finally brings the best out of the man. Bhaskar(Amitabh Dayal) is an ace shooter of the Bombay crime branch.He gets information about the underworld kingpin Adi(Anoop Soni) on the New Year?s eve.

    He teams up with his junior to catch the dreaded criminal dead or alive.On the way to the dock where Adi is expected Bhaskar tells his junior his story and his relationship with Adi.Bhaskar and Adi were childhood friends who stayed in a village and grew up together.Bhaskar?s elder brother had gone to Bombay few years back but never returned.He convinces his mother to let him go to the big bad city and find out about him.On reaching the city Bhaskar meets a respected sub-inspector(Om Puri).

    Through his help Bhaskar gets a job as a waiter in a Hotel.After few days Bhaskar comes to know that his brother had been shot by the police.After that he tells the police officer his desire to join the force and he is helped by the officer. In a short span of time Bhaskar becomes a famous name in the police force.He becomes an encounter specialist and is very respected by the force and media.His mother comes from the village to visit him and convinces him to get married.Bhaskar goes to his village to become friendly with childhood friend(Nandita Das).

    After few days of togetherness the both get married and Bhaskar brings her to Bombay.Bhaskar and Adi have become sworn enemies by this time.They interact regularly through mobiles and have informers who help them.Due to some misunderstanding Bhaskar gets suspended from the force and his life comes under trouble.However he is found innocent and rejoins the force.He also becomes the proud father of a son.

    This was Bhaskar?s story which he tells to his junior.They reach the dock and after few fights Bhaskar manages to eliminate Adi in an encounter. Kagaar,which went almost unnoticed by both the critics and audience when it was released in 2003 is a highly underrated film.This was the first film inspired by the life of Bombay Police Force Encounter specialist-Daya nayak.It came almost a year before the acclaimed and successful Ab Tak Chappan.

    In fact it is the first of the series of cop movies like Gangaajal,Khakee,Aan,Garv and others.In the beginning of the movie the director dedicates the movie to Daya Nayak.The movie shows the tough life of these brave men and tells us in a nutshell what can be a life of an encounter specialist of the Police Force.Although I must say that both Kagaar and Ab Tak Chappan although based on same theme are quite different yet some things are common in them.

    The most important being the interaction between the hero and the villain which takes place throughout the movie through mobile.Kagaar also tells about the hero?s childhood,his romantic moments with his fiancée and his past.However it does not tell about the internal rivalry and politics of the police force which was brilliantly shown in Ab Tak Chappan.

    The story is good and the screenplay is quite tight.There are few dull moments but they are very few.However there are some lapses in the screenplay.Its not very clear till the end as to why was Amitabh's elder brother is killed.Similarly on one hand we are told as to how does Dayal joins the Police Force but we are not told how does joins the underworld.The editing is good.The action scenes are very authentic.

    The direction by veteran N.Chandra is the backbone of the movie.Its really sad that audience did not watch the movie in theatres.the treatment is very different from Chandra's earlier work and direction is almost flawless.Although except Humlaa-1992(which was undoubtedly his worst movie) and leaving Beqaabu,Shikari and Excuse Me(which I have not seen) all his movies-Narsimha,Tejaswani,Wajood and Yugandhar had some brilliant moments but somewhere or other they failed in totality. In that respect Kagaar brings him back.

    Although Style was quite good and was a hit yet it was not Chandra's type of reality based hard-hitting violent cinema.Kagaar,although is reality based but its treatment is different from hard-hitting style of Ankush and Pratighaat.It is a movie where there is no dramatisation and the violence is not gruesome.The scene where Om Puri shows Amitabh Dayal an encounter,the scene where Amitabh kills the informer in a moving train,the scene where he is sleeping yet his fingers move as though he is pulling a trigger,the entire climax and the showing of his fingers moving when he is dying shows his craftsmanship on cinema.

    The usage of new year's eve which is similar to Kaalchakra-1987 and Parinda-1989.There was some recent controversy that the movie was financed by underworld but similar things were said about Vaastav also.The movie is officially produced by Dr.Mrunalini. Like Ankush,Pratighaat and Style this movie also has a newcomer in the central role.Amitabh Dayal fits the role almost perfectly.

    Although he is not as amazing as Nana Patekar was in Ankush,nor it can be said that he is as good as Nana in Ab Tak Chappan yet he gives a brilliant performance.His body language,physique and looks makes him perfect for the role.Nandita das is good.Om Puri plays an honest yet not so successful cop for the nth time and is good.The only hitch is the performance by .In such an authorbacked role of villain,the T.V. actor hams and does not make much out of the role.I guess he was much better in hathyaar.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    "Kagaar: Life on the edge" tells the story of a young man who comes to the big city to look for his lost brother and swears to become a policeman after he is only able to find his dead corpse. Soon, he has to fight an old friend in order to do the right thing.

    The movie is supposed to be very dramatic. Two former friends facing each other, a police in a state of disorganisation and law and order mentality and the challenge to be a good man and husband. However some of the plots are so vaguely created that they don't really add up. It is not really believable how and why his friend became a super villain. The seemingly bad and unmoral cop becomes his mentor. And he treats his wife with a sense of machoism that you feel set back several centuries. The production and acting are okay but not great and the result is mediocre.

    All in all this is a title you can watch without heavy boredom and it does tell a story but in the end it is nothing you'll miss if you don't see it.