We all love travelling – hence our love and passion for automobiles.
We love cruising along those unseen paths and barge into places we have never before been, drop our boring selves away and breathe air so fresh and full of freedom.
Feels great doesn’t it? Sadly, not so much when you’re being couriered into a truck with your hands tied and a dirty cloth in your mouth so you cannot screech for help.
We would all love to holiday in a place literally in the middle of nowhere, where you can’t see anything but plain land expanding into the horizon. But how would it feel when you can’t even escape from such a place even when freed by your kidnappers?
Yes indeed, it’s all scary but not for our protagonist; a pampered princess belonging to the elite class of Delhi soon to be married into a fairytale wedding in pure Punjabi style. She is kidnapped and predictably develops a soft corner for the simple-minded criminals. If you thought this is it, then Highway would have been a disaster movie which it fortunately is not.
|A quintessential road movie about journey of a lifetime.|
|Both the lead stars bring out their best performances, keeping you intrigued until the end.|
|Imtiaz keeps it simple and sensible sans any surprises or gimmicks.|
|Very good depiction of the NCR belt near Delhi, Himachal is ever beautiful in Imtiaz movies.|
|Rahman and Imtiaz can’t recreate the magic of Rockstar.|
|It seems like Jab We Met coming off age but it’s not; a typical journey movie with a kidnapping plot minus the typical Stockholm syndrome. Review Scores by Saurin Shah.|
Imtiaz Ali with his memorable modern love story Jab We Met (2007) won a lot of accolades for his style of story treatment and bringing so much freshness into the most overused genre of Hindi films.
We hoped for the same charisma with Rockstar (2011) but that being a different film – despite the young heartthrob Ranbir Kapoor giving such a superb performance – ended up being a confused plot and story and didn’t go down as a popular hit.
With Highway, Imtiaz returns with a no-nonsense script and concentrates on his strength of story-telling backed by the sheer beauty of Himalayas – seems like he’s got a permanent settlement in that region.
If movies were to be automobiles, then most blockbusters are expected to be those supercars that give audience members a rush in their seats. With that there are some heavy trucks that prove slow and boring, and then there are fun train rides like Chennai Express (2013).
Among these there are films like Highway that you would love watch over and over again whenever aired on TV – not for the ups and downs and sharp U-turn twists and crashes, but for the smooth pace of the simple story. Given this, Highway just cruises and cruises, right until the end.
There are no flashbacks to why the kidnapping happens like many common kidnapping films. Instead, the escaping criminals just ‘happen to’ take away the girl to use as a shield while escaping and then begins a journey that not only answers all the juggernaut questions of life but also heals all the wounds exposed by surroundings and situations.
Alia Bhatt, playing Veera Tripathi, has got a very strong character to handle as she is the one who ‘drives’ the story and excels with A++ grades (so what if she wasn’t Student of the Year; 2012).
She plays all the shades of the silver-spoon lass very well; in all the sequences where she enjoys the sheer freedom bestowed upon her by the kidnapping incident and opens up with criminals as she discovers best pals in them, and the strength she shows in testing times, Alia displays her mettle as a very good actor.
Randeep Hooda is one of the many underrated actors who only manages to get gangster or police roles with limited screen time. As Mahavir, he aptly portrays a rustic goon and underplays his character to give enough support to Veera.
A. R. Rahman of late has not been serving his best after Rockstar and his albums have been featuring only 2 or 3 great easy listening songs while the rest have been a lab experiment mix of unpolished tunes. The Highway music also is limited to ‘Maahi ve’ and ‘Patakha Guddi’ which truly have a Rahman touch and his standard. The other songs prove to be a mere background score.
We did not have many expectations of Highway for the story and the star cast, but with Imtiaz Ali’s screenplay and direction and the wonderful locales of Himachal Pradesh it’s a decent movie to be enjoyed at ease.