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Yaara Film Review: A tedious tale of friendship with no speck of authenticity.

Aakash Mishra

You know when you sit down to watch a Tigmanshu Dhulia film, you can be pretty sure that it directly or indirectly refers to some socio-political aspect even before the film starts. Be it his very first hits, Haasil or the national award-winning Paan Singh Tomar. The thing is Tigmanshu is a great fan of mixing high octane action with a political backdrop and so like his, any other film, this new release Yaara on ZEE5 also covers largely designed action sequences with historic allusions but it’s hollow when you look at its key elements because the film lacks a proper characterization and has a very obvious plot to follow.

Yaara is a remake of a 2011 French drama film by Oliver Marchal called Les Lyonnais ( A Gang Story) which is an epic saga of crime in which the lead protagonists are a gang of best friends but the rapidly changing politics somehow affects their solid companionship. Four outlaws, highly popular for smuggling guns across the borders of India and Nepal somehow land themselves in the outfits of leftist militants. After finishing their prison time, three of them are living a peaceful life with their family but the trouble knocks their doors again when a lost friend returns.

The first half of the film is beating around the bushes filled with cringy music sequences and pointless moments cooked just to highlight the strong friendship of the four leads. Except for Vidyut, none of the actors get a proper characterization nor a space to shine in terms of action. Yaara is about four friends but after a while, it stops being about them and just concentrates on the story of Phagun( Vidyut).And even Phagun’s character arc lacks luster and is filled with predictability. Most of the time, you see the frontrunners roaming aimlessly and talking in an inauthentic manner to each other. None of the aspects in the film appear natural and almost everything lacks the needed touch of right emotions and genuineness.

Yaara expands from the early 1950s to the late 1990s and covers a set of cinematic references from posters of Amar Akbar Anthony to mimicry of Amitabh Bachchan from Trishul. Even at a time when radio newsreader announces the death of playback singer Mukesh, all of the friends are deeply saddened after listening to this news. Tigmanshu Dhulia takes the support of these cinematic references to build up conversations among the characters but they are so fragile that they don’t even last longer than a few moments. The social backdrop of rising power, injustice, police atrocity, unemployment, upper-caste ill-treatment, and corruption all are just thrown in the air and aren’t used effectively. The sporadic screenplay and disarrayed treatment infused in the narrative only makes the matter worse.

Performances by Vidyut Jammwal and Amit Sadh as brooding hunks were somehow convincing but the rest of the cast including Vijay Varma didn’t get a floor to express themselves. Cinematography techniques date back to the era the film is set, it looks as if the film is also manufactured in the ’70s.  This appears like an intentional move but it fails largely because of lousy refining. Even the setup at places isn’t able to capture the right atmosphere for the backdrop in which the film is set. The slow-motion shots, the one for all high-octane action segments, lack a proper direction. The poor editing and the poorer music score doesn’t help the film in any way. Overall, Yaara aims to achieve so many things yet achieves none.

Cast: Vidyut Jammwal, Amit Sadh, Vijay Varma, Kenny, Sanjay Mishra, and Shruti Hassan.

Director: Tigmanshu Dhulia.

Streaming: ZEE5

Verdict: Poor, shoddily built narrative. You can definitely skip this.

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