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‘Rustom’ – Black and White or Shades of Grey?


Rustom is a crime-mystery thriller which is based on the real life incident of Naval Officer K.M. Nanavati played by Akshay Kumar.

The trailer gives us a sense that the movie is about a naval officer who shoots his wife’s lover in rage.

But the plot is far more intriguing and cleverly crafted than that, without giving away the suspense of the film.  It is not a black and white story but has many shades and thought provoking elements to it.

The movie is set in 1959 and the director has managed to re-create the look of Bombay at the time elegantly with drive in movie theatres, costumes of that era and what not!

Akshay looks dapper in every frame as a decorated navy officer.  His acting is stellar and he is supported by Ileana d’Cruz who looks beautiful and vulnerable at the same time, albeit with shades of grey.

The actions of this couple leave you wondering about what is morally, socially and politically correct or incorrect and yet their innocence steals your heart.  The movie highlights the blind hero worship of our armed officers and how the nexus of media and propaganda shape the course of the justice system in India.

The supporting cast is brilliant especially Sachin Khedekaras as the Public Prosecutor, Kumud Mishra as the newspaper publisher who tries to influence the people in favour of the accused.

Esha Gupta plays the sister of the man who is murdered and looks sexy, naughty and bitchy in each frame.

The music is average except the title song ‘Tere Sang Yara’ sung soulfully by Atif Aslam.

This is clearly not a mainstream, Bollywood masala movie but a crisp to- the- point courtroom drama which is strength and a weakness at the same time.

The first half of the movie is used to build the background of the case and unravels a bit slowly. The second half is clearly compelling.

Overall, the movie does keep you on the edge and you do not mind parts when it does get repetitive.  What makes it so interesting is that it is based on a real life case and it has been told in a very gripping manner.

The irony of the courtroom scenes does leave the audience amused.  The dialogues between the judge and the prosecutors are riveting reminding one of 12 angry men in parts, as it uses a jury for a verdict and how the protagonist plays on their mind with his compelling arguments.

Whether the audience decides in Rustom’s favour only the box office will tell!

It is a must watch movie for any Akshay Kumar fan as he clearly steals the show and for all courtroom drama lovers!



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