Wazir - Review

wogma rating: Watch when on TV (?)
quick review:

A predictable thriller because of the way it is narrated. Good performances, though.

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The “edge-of-the-seat” bit of a thriller comes from you second guessing yourself on what you think might happen. If however, you know for sure what the turnout is going to be like the edge is taken off. Yet, a hopeless hopeful like me, waits for the unwrapping – the manner in which it will all play out. Wazir disappoints with that too.

Even if you didn't figure it out, Wazir's twists are unraveled through monologues that spell out the scheme – be it by the victim or the perpetrator. That kind of resolution is one of the worst kinds in a thriller. Just because the other characters in the film are awestruck, it takes a little more to surprise the audience. Wazir can get points for making it quick though. There isn't a long-winded explanation, just short, sweet and shut.

In that sense, the film is crisp and moves along pretty swiftly. It keeps you interested even though it might have meant to keep you glued. During the film for some reason, I was expecting it to break into a “khoya khoya chand”, a la Shaitan. Though I remember that one not fitting in the film and coming across as a gimmick in the context of the film. In that sense, Wazir lacks style. I know, I know, what is the poor director to do! Style comes across as gimmick when done and when missing, the viewer missed it.

However, I am positive I wouldn't have missed it one bit had it been for a strong story. The chess analogies seem lame. The breadcrumbs for the “twists” are too obvious. For instance, you know a certain dialogue is being overshadowed by another one because the former has a clue. And indeed, when the mystery unveils, the dialogue is repeated, just in case the audience needs to be spoonfed.

And this is despite an inscrutable performance by Amitabh Bachchan. Of course, I mean that in a good way. A quip-less Farhan Akhtar is a little hard to take in. While it is a good change for him as an actor, as the audience you are expecting him to break into a smart-Alec line any time. Sure, that cannot be held against him, it's just that the character makes him that guy with just one expression. Aditi Rao Hydari looks gorgeous and yet again, is just that. Interestingly, though each of her roles use her as just the necessary female lead, I have wondered what she would do with a really meaty role.

That leaves us with a thriller in which can tell two of the main twists from a mile away and are willing to forgive the writing because of the performances. Until the revelations come in the worst form possible. Even so, for those of us who couldn't guess the twist, Wazir might be well worth the watch.

- meeta, a part of the audience

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: Gun and fist fights
  • Language: Clean
  • Nudity & Sexual content: Clean
  • Concept: A revenge saga
  • General Look and Feel: Nothing out of the ordinary

Detailed Ratings (out of 5):

  • Direction: 2.5
  • Story: 2
  • Lead Actors: 3.5
  • Character Artists: 3.5
  • Dialogues: 3
  • Screenplay: 2
  • Music Director: 2
  • Lyrics: 2

Wazir - Movie Details

Wazir - Trailer

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Comments (25)

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Fan:

All the trailers look awesome. So was the case for Eklavya.

Let's hope that this one lives up to hype. If it does then 2016 would be a rare year in Hindi films to start off with a bang already at the end of its first week.

Anuj:

Wazir, Airlift, Neerja and Jai Gangajal. That's 4 movies i'm looking forward to in the first quarter of 2016 before we move on to the biggies like Mohenjo Daro, Baahubali 2 and Shivaay.

Fan:

You missed out your fav Raju Hirani's film? Biopic on Sanjay Dutt starring Ranbeer Kapoor.

Anuj:

Sanjay's biopic releases in 2017. Btw, Raju's behind Neeraj Pandey & Shoojit Sircar as far as favoritism goes :P

Fan:

Phantom of January bugs Wazir. Very rarely we have a smashing hit in January from Hindi film industry, and the trend seems to continue if the review of bollywoodhungama is to be believed.

Too bad, for me at least. My tickets are booked for tomorrow - so pain or gain I will be sitting through it.

Anuj:

@Fan : Wazir is a movie catering to just 25% of the total movie watching audience in India. But as it happens with most Hindi films today, this one too would be over-priced and hence a successful box office run is out of question. However, like it happened with Baby & Drishyam last year (2 other films with relatively high costs despite catering to a limited audience), if Wazir does manage a positive word of mouth, it can go on to have a decent run in the multiplexes of Delhi-NCR/Bombay-Pune and Bangalore.

Anuj:

Here is the final box office analysis of 2015 :

http://bollywoodboxofficedata.blogspot.in/2015/12/box-office-2015-year-of-under.html

Fan:

This is just an "also ran" film. Nothing much to cheer about.

Many well known producers and directors have their own exaggerated beliefs in their own skills. Vidhu Vinod Chopra is no exception. He has this notion that he is a great writer. That he is capable of writing some good thriller stories. It might be so but he's only good at writing short stories. Stories of about 30 to 40 pages. He has not yet proved that he could write taut thrillers of 500 to 600 pages. First Eklavya and now this. That is certainly a short film that could be enjoyable in max 60 minutes duration. This is not a film of two hours and above which will keep the audience glued to their seats.

Due to the story's "short" nature I got the feeling that the film is dragging, a bit like Lootera. As it doesn't have content to fill up the 90 minutes (yeah, you read it right) the pace is extremely lethargically excruciatingly slow, almost like in slow motion. Although it's a tad bit faster than Lootera.

As regards the suspense, it doesn't take a genius to figure out early in the show as to who is what. So not a good thriller at that.

I have my serious doubt that this film will leave any mark. If you don't get to watch it then there's nothing to regret about.

Anuj:

Wazir is predictable and has a loose script no doubt, yet I would recommend every Amitabh Bachchan fan whose idolized this genius over the decades to watch this one. He is in his angry element all over again, something that his die hard fans can never get enough of. From Zanjeer to Deewar to Sholay to Trishul to Laawaris to Shehanshah to Agneepath to Khakee to Sarkar and now to Wazir, the angry young man might not be young anymore, but his fire refuses to ceases. So does his on screen brilliance!

raj:

Thank God, I didn't believe on Meeta's review or her Rating (which she labels on every movie). Experience was great. I was fearing what is SO predictable as announced by our critic. But I couldn't predict it up to the end ( am I a dumb guy?). Nice crisp movie.

moviebhakt:

@raj - Dumbness HELPED me, too. Glad that I watched it on the big screen :). Thoroughly enjoyed it.

Parikshit:

I watched Wazir on the big screen and loved it. I too didn't see the twist coming and it was a nice surprise. The movie moves along petty quick. It feels good to watch movies with kicker endings like this one and Drishyam. Way better than the mindless crap that Dilwale was.

Fan:

All eyes now on Airlift. Let's hope that it is a content based film.

BTW: Bajirao is still going extremely strong despite Wazir. And Bollywood hungama has produced an interesting Amir Khan metric for the 100 cr+ films wherein Bajirao ranks number 3 in all time hits (after 3 idiots and TWMR) and ahead of PK, Dhoom3, etc. Just for the records, using the same metric, Dilwaale ranks 26th (behind Houseful 2, Grand Masti, Bol Bachhan, etc.)

@Anuj: you might like that metric because it claims to rank the film on the word to mouth success of the film rather than based on lifetime collection.

Fan:

... and if the "at least 100 cr earning" is ignored, then 3 idiots is beaten by Queen and Dum Lagake Haisha.

meeta:

I am so happy so many of you enjoyed the film! :D :D

Anuj:

@Fan : Comparing trending of 3i, PK and BB sort of films with the likes of Queen and Kahaani is futile. The biggies cater to a universal audience and generate 50% of their footfalls within the first week itself. However, films like Queen and Kahaani start slowly as there is little buzz and they cater to a very limited audience of just about 30-40%. Its only on the basis of strong word of mouth that they grow among their own "limited target audience". Hence in mathematical terms, the % drop for the biggies is bound to be a lot higher than the smaller one's. 3I, PK and BB are the best trending biggies in recent times as they cater to a universal target audience. The likes of Kahaani, Queen and Piku have done exceptionally well on word of mouth among their own limited target audience. A lot of this also has to do with competition, no. of open weeks, screen count etc. They've all done exceptionally well among their own target audience, big or small.

Anuj:

@Fan : The modern day multiplex era of rampant internet piracy & digital TV has taken away almost 50% of the audience off the theaters. The biggest blockbusters of today like 3Idiots, PK & Bajrangi Bhaijaan record just 3-3.5 cr theatrical footfall as opposed to 6cr+ recorded by HAHK & DDLJ two decades ago. In this scenario, bollywood films can largely be categorized into 3. The first kind are the one's made with mass sensibilities and for the entertainment of the masses. The likes of Dabangg, Singham, Rowdy Rathore & Dhoom 3 fall in this category. These movies have a huge audience among the B & C centers and among the tier 2 and tier 3 cities. These audiences mainly constitute over 60% of the total audience in terms of viewership. However, in terms of revenue, the B & C center audiences bring in just 40% of the revenue for a movie due to the disproportionate ticket prices between the multiplexes of smaller cities as compared to the metros. However, the important thing to be noted is that mass entertainers such as these also have a big enough audience in the A centers and metropolitan cities too. And hence i term these films to have "universal appeal". The next category of films are the one's that cater to only the A centers and metropolitan/semi metropolitan cities. These movies have a target audience which constitutes 40% of the total audience in terms of viewership. Majority of this target audience resides in cities like Delhi-NCR, Bombay, Pune, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata and a few more. These movies include the likes of ZNMD, Kahaani, Piku, Queen and the likes. Unfortunately, unlike the "universal films" which also find an audience in the A centers, these movies have virtually zilch audience in the B & C centers and hence have to solely rely on metropolitan audiences to bring in the numbers. And therefore, these films unless if made on a shoestring budget (like Kahaani & Queen), usually end up with just a Semi-Hit or a Hit status at best. They never really become the blockbusters of the kind like Dabangg and Ghajini due to a lack of appeal among the tier 2 ad tier 3 cities. The third category of films are the one's that cater to an even smaller audience. They have a target audience of just 20% of the total audience and that's mainly due to their lack of appeal thanks to the style of film making (dark and broody undertone). Typical examples of such films are Madras Cafe, Haider, Talvar and now Wazir. Such movies, however well made they are have very little chance of box office survival unless they're made on a minuscule cost and carry an extremely positive buzz among their very limited 20% target audience (Paan Singh Tomar, Talvar etc).

Fan:

@Anuj: internet piracy might certainly be one factor for decreasing footfalls. But it is also important to understand the reason for increasing piracy - if we could use the word piracy. In my opinion, the greedy actors + producers + distributors + multiplex owners are looting in the name of ticket prices. The prices honestly have gone up vertically over the past years. And that is driving commoners to resort to cheaper means to watch their favorite films. As in case of DVDs / VCDs, Shemaroo showed that the costing done by commercial houses is simply exaggerated and the selling price can be dropped significantly and still achieve good returns. Same for the films. Imagine the stars slashing their prices to reasonably correct levels, the various FX units charging the correct amount (or rather producers refusing to pay exorbitant margins for FX) etc. and then passing on those benefits to the audience with a lower ticket tag - automatically the footfalls will increase. Because there is simply no substitute to pure entertainment on the big screen - especially not some camera held copy of grainy quality and choppy sound.

So if film industry stops looting the paying public, the piracy will automatically go down.

Anuj:

@Fan : Yes absolutely. Another very good example of very good economics was seen in Bahubali which in spite of having high end VFX, had a final production and distribution cost that was much lower than some of the bollywood big budgeted films like PRDP and Dilwale. Even the ticket cost for Bahubali in Bangalore/Chennai and Hyderabad multiplexes was less than half that of many bollywood films. And so we saw Bahubali record theatrical footfalls that were almost at part with the biggest bollywood grossers like PK and Bajrangi in spite of being a non Hindi film.

Anuj:

The negativity by the trade regarding Wazir is appalling. The movie has been made on a cost of just under 40 cr and has netted 29.5 cr in week 1. With an open week 2, Wazir will most certainly recover its investment for everyone concerned. It might not be a box office success but its certainly not a major loser unlike the so-called "successful" films like Dilwale, Ra.1, Don 2, Jai Ho and Talaash. Biased and negative propaganda by sham sites like boxofficeindia and a few of the other trade analysts is disgraceful.

Suman Chakraborty:

Direction: 1.5
Story: 0.5
Lead Actors: 2.5
Character Artists: 1
Dialogues: 2
Screenplay: 0.5
Music Director: 1
Lyrics: 0.5

Anuj:

Sankranti turn around. Just when all hopes were almost lost, there's a sudden turn around on Thursday and the numbers escalate by 40%. There's a strong chance of the movie hitting 40 cr lifetime number and going on to become an Average grosser now. And unlike the so-called fake successes like Dilwale & Ra.1, Wazir for sure is not making any losses for anyone concerned :P

Anuj:

Now that Blockbuster Mastani and 'Disaster'-wale have almost ended their run, here is the final box office report & verdicts for 2015 :

http://bollywoodboxofficedata.blogspot.in/2016/01/box-office-classifications-2015.html

Shilpi Dutta:

WAZIR was a good movie because of the legend Amitabh Bachhan who glues you to the screen every minute. I had guessed the first twist quite easily but not the end. It was a thrilling movie.

Samir:

Predictable fare, poor handling. One could easily pick the scenes and lines that were going to be repeated in the grand denouement. Disappointing!

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