Khuda Haafiz Review: An Unsurprising Tale Of Love

Mumbai: Director Faruk Kabir chose Vidyut Jammwal, a trained martial art expert, to play the role of common man cum superman in Khuda Hafiz. The film inspired from a real-life incident, begins with Sameer (Vidyut), who ties the knot with Nargis (Shivaleeka Oberoi) in an arranged marriage.
As a common man, his world resides within the four walls of home and his heart lies in his family. He travels in crowded buses, keeps his finances in check and works hard in the office, all to keep his family safe. But what if, one day, his acutely balanced world comes crumbling down after one phone call. Forcing him to break out of his comfort zone and find his inner superhero.
Sameer in love with Nargis and both software engineers build their life together but they lose their jobs after the recession hits the country. Desperate, they find placements in a fictional Middle-Eastern city called Noman. Khuda Haafiz, which is shot in Uzbekistan, sees many local actors fill up the frame. Their presence provides an authencity to the film.
Nargis, who has never stepped out of her city Lucknow, gets placed first and decides to travel alone. Sameer is doubtful but he has no choice. His worst fear comes to life when his wife goes missing right after landing in the foreign country. The Lucknow boy follows, doing everything in his power to find her.
Vidyut, who has established himself as a tough action figure right from the beginning of his career, gives feelings and emotions precedence in Khuda Haafiz. Faruk also doesn’t overstuff his film with over-the-top action sequences. He makes use of Vidyut’s martial arts skills but without turning him into a larger-than-life figure. Our hero gets hurt, cries and shows his vulnerable side to the audience without any qualms.
But this doesn’t mean Khuda Haafiz is any low-on-action flick. Though Vidyut falls a little short when it comes to emoting feelings on the screen, he is the most comfortable unleashing fury on bad guys. From effortlessly jumping from one building to another to showing off his knife-throwing skills, he does it all.
The scene where Vidyut and his wife find themselves surrounded by over 20-30 goons in a narrow alley is without a doubt one of the most well-crafted sequences of the film. The agility that Vidyut shows while kicking, stabbing criminals is impressive. Apart from Vidyut, Annu Kapoor as a helpful taxi driver is a delight to watch. He adds the much-needed warmth to the film.
The plot of Khuda Haafiz missing wife in a foreign land – sounds exciting on paper. We have seen a similar plotline in Liam Neeson’s 2008 film, Taken, where we saw Liam make inroads in the underworld to find his missing daughter. Faruk Kabir’s film, however, isn’t as sharply written as the Hollywood blockbuster. Right after quickly setting its premise, the film slows down, only to gain pace in the end.
The film is also marred by some starkly visible loopholes. Once again, the leading lady is shown as a fragile figure who needs to be rescued. The presence of Aahana Kumra and Shiv Panditt in supporting roles is of no help either, especially because of their forced, bad accents.
Apart from these few faults, Khuda Haafiz makes for a good one-time watch. From action to drama, the film has it all. You might want to pick this over the weekend.

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