Rating : 3.8/5
Genre : Drama/Action
Year : 2019
Running time : 2 hours 18 minutes
Director : Aditya Dhar
Cast : Vicky Kaushal, Paresh Rawal, Yami Gautam, Kirti Kulhari, Rajit Kapoor
Kid rating : PG-13
The husband had mentioned that film-reviews he’d read weren’t exactly glowing in praise for Uri, so my expectations going in to the theater to see it were at best mediocre. The film surpassed my expectation by a whole lot. In short: I liked Uri – this is a good film.
The film is about the 2016 Uri Attack, an attack on Indian Security forces by 4 heavily-armed terrorists. Many were injured, and many were killed as they slept. The movie shows the attack and then shows India’s retaliatory surgical strike against terrorist base camps near the Line Of Control. Vicky Kaushal plays Major Vihaan Singh Shergill, who leads the mission.
Uri is a little slow-moving but told sparely, with very little over-the-top drama. There are some jingoistic dialogs but I can see that as a need to build up the patriotic fervor. I was especially impressed with the scenes of the actual operation as the commandoes move soundlessly and with very little fuss into enemy territory and accomplish their mission. Even the zing-zing of the bullets felt real. We have such few well-done war movies in Bollywood that Uri is a breath of fresh air.
The star of this film truly is Kaushal. If you’d asked me before who’d be the right choice for this role, Kaushal wouldn’t even have come to mind, but he does an amazing job! He’s a fabulous actor and fits into this role snug and sure. Gone is the scrawny hesitant lad of Masaan, and the arrogant rapper-DJ of Manmarziyaan! In Uri, a bulked up Kaushal takes center stage as a confident Army major, willing to do or die for this country. Of course, Kaushal also gets the meat of the film, complete with a climax ka hand-to-hand battle with the bad guy.
The supporting cast while good, could have benefited from better character development. Yami Gautam is an Intelligence Officer, but the role is sketchily developed. Kirti Kulhari is quietly dignified as an Air Force pilot – I would have loved to see more of her back-story. Swaroop Sampat plays Shergill’s Alzheimer-ridden mother and does it well. Rajit Kapoor (you might remember him from Raazi) as a soft-spoken PM, kind of like a weird amalgamation of PMs Modi and Manmohan Singh, and Paresh Rawal as National Security Advisor Govind Bharadwaj complete the round-up.
What I really like about Uri besides the action of course, is the fact that it focuses on the story, there is no needless romance thrust into the film (unlike Padman). There is no unnecessary naach-gaana or endless emotional drama about maa-ki-mamta and other Bollywoodian crap. Uri sticks to its business. It is spare and strong, slick and gritty, an engrossing watch. Go see!
Kidwise: This is an almost-war movie, so there’s violence and bloodshed and some bone-crunching hand-to-hand combat.