By: By Taran Adarsh (IndiaFM)
Critic's Rating: 17/5
Monday 28 March 2005
Sanjay Dutt, Suneil Shetty, Ajay Devgan, Bobby Deol, Tanisha
First things first! If you expect Tango Charlie to be yet another war film, let's get it right at the very outset. The story of the film is different, something that hasn't been attempted earlier.
Tango Charlie is about the fight between the Border Security Forces and the militants within our country. The film talks about the BSF officers and their sacrifices for the nation.
The story has a strong message to offer - that violence doesn't pay and that war is futile, eventually causing human loss. The intentions of the film-maker need to be applauded!
So, does Tango Charlie strike a chord? Yes, it moves you in parts. A little more concentration on that vital aspect called 'script' and Tango Charlie would've been in a class of its own.
Indian Air Force helicopter pilots, Squadron Leader Vikram Rathore [Sanjay Dutt] and Flight Lieutenant Shezad Khan [Suniel Shetty], are busy with the process of passing time in the white-clad wilderness of endless non-populated arid lands. Suddenly, they spot a number of bodies strewn over and a hand reaching out.
The rescue is carried out despite a 'No-Go' from the HQ Command because of bad weather. The basic first-aid is carried out and a diary is discovered.
What unfolds through the pages of this diary, while these two pilots fight bad weather and the need to keep the rescued BSF soldier alive, takes them on a whirlwind trip across the nation with Sepoy Tarun Chauhan [Bobby Deol], his journey of life, his love Lachchi [Tanishaa], his battles, his fears, the loss of innocence, and above all, the influence of his mentor, Havaldar Mohammed Ali [Ajay Devgan], who is shaping his destiny.
From time immemorial, soldiers have fallen on the battlefield without really knowing why they were fighting, and for what. Absurdly, wars are always fought in the name of peace.
The protagonists of Tango Charlie represent these brave fighters who are ready to sacrifice their lives for the sake of our safety and security without any expectation of any award or reward.
The story of Tango Charlie is undoubtedly novel, but the film is not without its share of flaws. The 'obstacle' in the film is the love story between Bobby and Tanishaa. In fact, till the love story unfolds on the screen, Tango Charlie really keeps you hooked to the goings-on.
Besides, the story of the film unfolds in chapters. From the viewer point of view, this may not be too exciting an idea, since you'd want to know the story at one go, not in an episodic format. Even the usage of various dialects in the film acts as a deterrent. It may seem authentic, but is difficult to comprehend for those who don't understand the language.
But there's no denying that the film has some well-executed sequences. The transformation of Bobby Deol's character into a 'strong-hearted man' is interestingly handled. Even the action sequences are skillfully executed.
Mani Shankar's handling of the subject deserves credit, but how one wishes the screenplay was cohesive and taut. But true to Mani's style, the director enmeshes heavy gadgetry and stylized action to great advantage. Music [Anu Malik and Anand Raaj Anand] is weak. Frankly, there's not much scope for songs in this genre and even the ones that have been incorporated, don't appeal. Cinematography [Surendra Reddy] is noteworthy, especially the jungle portions.
Tango Charlie belongs to Ajay Devgan completely. He carries the film on his shoulders and delivers a striking performance. Bobby Deol is average. Sanjay Dutt and Suniel Shetty leave a mark in small, but significant roles. The two leading ladies, Tanishaa and Nandana Sen, get no scope in this male-dominated film. Tanishaa has yet to get the grammar of acting right. Nandana Sen doesn't get scope either.
Amongst the supporting cast, Kelly Dorji stands out. He manages to make his presence felt. Mukesh Tiwari has been wasted. Sudesh Berry, Shahbaaz Khan, Vivek Shauq and Sanjay Mishra are as usual. Alok Nath and Tiku Talsania are routine.
On the whole, Tango Charlie is a decent fare. At the box-office, the strong star cast may result in the film opening well and eventually should find some takers in certain circuits.
Rating:- * *.