Review : The Ghazi Attack
Director: Sankalp Reddy
Director Sankalp Reddy’s The Ghazi Attack , which is India’s first war-at-sea film, is based on the sinking of PNS Ghazi, which sneaked into Indian waters in the year 1971 with the intention of launching an attack on the Indian carrier, INS Vikrant.
Pakistan, while assigning the task to Ghazi, which at that point was the pride of its naval fleet, told its captain Razzaq that if taking on the mighty Indian carrier wasn’t going to be possible, Ghazi was to launch a strike on Vishakhapatnam, which was the headquarters of India’s Eastern Naval Command, and destroy it. Razzaq, one of Pakistan navy’s most accomplished commanders, would have succeeded in this evil mission but for the presence of Indian submarine S 21, which smartly and deftly took on Ghazi before sinking it.
It is this piece of history that director Sankalp Reddy places on record with his film The Ghazi Attack and he does so in an elegant and thrilling manner.
As this was a classified mission, details would not have been available easily but full marks to director Sankalp Reddy for having researched well in to this dog fight and for having reconstructed the sequence of events that occurred on that fateful night before the beginning of the Indo-Pak war in 1971.
Sankalp Reddy’s version of the sinking of Ghazi is by and large based on his book called The Blue Fish. But to his credit, the director also seems to have gone through all the other versions of what actually happened on that night. He seems to have picked the best of all the versions and then stitched them to together in a convincing manner to come up with a film that thrills, entertains and educates.
Right from the word go, the film is engaging. As a viewer, you don’t feel like even batting an eyelid as you could risk losing vital information. This kind of engagement can be possible only when you have not just a fascinating story to tell and some fantastic actors to enact the story but also some great editing.
Editor Sreekar Prasad tight editing ensures the film’s plot is engaging every second. There is not a single frame that can be deemed redundant or unnecessary. The film is as taut as a bowstring and a huge chunk of the credit for this must go to Sreekar Prasad. The other part must, of course, go to the director.
The film’s biggest strength is its cast. Some of the finest actors, through their fine performances, teleport you to the scene of battle and keep you on the edge of your seats. Rana Daggubati, Atul Kulkarni and KayKay Menon score full marks for their more than impressive performances.
Om Puri, one of India’s best and easily one of the world’s finest actors, plays his part to perfection. Sadly, this was his last performance. The film is indeed is a fitting tribute to one of the greatest actors the world has ever seen.
Four other departments also need to be commended for their exceptional work in this film. The first among these is the Cinematography department. Cameraman Madhie’s work needs to be commended for the manner in which he has canned his shots and kept his frames. The next in line for praise is the art department. Erecting submarine sets that are perfect in every sense of the word is no joke but the team seems to have scored a perfect 10. All the sets look so real that despite being aware of the fact that they are just sets, one is completely led to believe that the naval officers are indeed in a submarine.
The CG department’s work is also something that has to come in for appreciation. A considerable amount of CG has been used in the film but to an ordinary viewer, it simply will not exist. That is because it will take an experienced eye to even spot the places where CG has been used in this film. That is the class this film exudes.
Last but not the least, the film has some fantastic background score by K.
On the whole, this is one film that I will strongly recommend for all kinds of audience.
Go watch it! This one’s not to be missed!