‘Baby’ movie review: This Akshay Kumar film is as simplistic as its title

Baby movie review: This is Akshay’s most credible performance in a long time, and reminds us the actor he can be.

Rating: 2 out of 5
Written by Shubhra Gupta | Updated: January 24, 2015 4:39 pm
Baby, Akshay Kumar, baby Review, tapsee pannu, Akshay Baby, Akshay ‘Baby’ is a perfect vehicle for the times we live in: it gives us a home-spun hero who allows himself to be hurt but is invincible, and an enemy who is the easiest to demonise.

Star Cast: Akshay Kumar, Danny Denzongpa, Rana Daggubati, Anupam Kher, Kay Kay, Taapsee Pannu, Sushant Singh, Mikaal Zulfikar

Director: Neeraj Pandey

‘Baby’ is a perfect vehicle for the times we live in: it gives us a home-spun hero who allows himself to be hurt but is invincible, and an enemy who is the easiest to demonise. The film is as simplistic as its title – Us vs Them, and no prizes for guessing who will win. In a messy world, where each action can have an equal and opposite reaction, what is the point of complexity?

(Read: Pakistan bans Akshay Kumar’s ‘Baby’)

We are given a luxuriously-bearded mullah (based, clearly, upon a couple of real-life types) whose eyeballs have flames in them, and a crowd of followers who look as if they are ready for ‘jihad’. They raise blood-curdling slogans, and talk nasty about `Indiya’. The retaliatory measures undertaken by our hero are justified right in the beginning. Can’t have hate-spewing terrorists who hide out in countries-ringed-by-deserts-and-sand-dunes threatening our sovereign nation, can we?

So we are meant to cheer when the skilled counter-espionage agent Ajay (Akshay Kumar) breaks bones and smashes faces, while a gruesome interrogation sets the scene. If they can bash our guys, we are allowed to bash right back, no questions asked. Ajay and his band of merry men, the impossibly buff Daggubati, and the sulky computer expert Anupam Kher, cause some amusement as they race around Turkey and Nepal and the Middle East, tracking the baddies. But the whole is familiar and much of it is tedious.

(Also read: Get over ‘Heyy Babyy!’, Akshay Kumar arrives with ‘Baby’)

This is Akshay’s most credible performance in a long time, and reminds us the actor he can be, when he is not up-ending monkeys and dogs in films pretending to be comedies.The supporting cast is handed out a few diverting tics, which includes a nice little turn by Ms Pannu as the girl who can give as good as she gets.

But the niggling discomfort caused by the pandering to stereotypes ( and the requisite nod to tokenism) colours our viewing. There’s also the fact that though this film looks always to be on the move, it frequently stalls. The result is a sort of frantic business which flatters to deceive : ‘Baby’, fronted by its fleet-footed hero with his brisk moustache and its background-music-overlaid action, feels longer than it should.

Meanwhile, Bharat Mata Ki Jai.

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First Published on: January 23, 2015 11:37 am
  1. S
    Sraddhadeva Joshey
    May 3, 2015 at 11:11 am
    Dear Ms. Shubhra Gupta, You gave Ek tha tiger 3 stars and Baby only 2 Stars? Ek tha tiger was a foolish and boring movie, but baby is fun to watch, no telgu style foolish action scenes. If Ek tha tiger deserves 3 stars then Baby deserves atleast 4.5 stars out of 5.
    Reply
    1. अंकुश लट्ठ
      May 3, 2015 at 12:54 pm
      मुझे लगता है इन मोहतरमा को फिल्म समीक्षा छोडकर कोई और काम ढूंढना चाहिए.....
      Reply
      1. A
        Arcgate QA
        Jan 24, 2015 at 9:55 am
        Good movie
        Reply
        1. A
          Arcgate QA
          Jan 24, 2015 at 9:55 am
          Good movie
          Reply
          1. A
            Arcgate QA
            Jan 25, 2015 at 8:38 am
            Nice movie
            Reply
            1. A
              Arcgate QA
              Jan 24, 2015 at 8:39 am
              movie should be good as it looks in promos.
              Reply
              1. A
                Arcgate QA
                Jan 24, 2015 at 8:39 am
                movie should be good as it looks in promos.
                Reply
                1. A
                  Archisman Mozumder
                  May 12, 2015 at 9:47 pm
                  Shubhra Gupta-ji, If one were were to look back for the last 12 months & ess the movies that have got a rating of 3 or more in this publication, there will sure be a few red, embarred faces. Even if one grants you the right to rate whatever your tastes & preferences dictate, not mentioning the slick screenplay & the taut pace of this thriller, is perhaps not very charitable.
                  Reply
                  1. I
                    Israel Zindabad
                    Jan 23, 2015 at 6:27 am
                    Positive review but two stars. Read this above This is Akshay’s most credible performance in a long time, and reminds us the actor he can be
                    Reply
                    1. I
                      Israel Zindabad
                      Jan 23, 2015 at 6:27 am
                      Positive review but two stars. Read this above This is Akshay’s most credible performance in a long time, and reminds us the actor he can be
                      Reply
                      1. I
                        Israel Zindabad
                        Jan 23, 2015 at 6:22 am
                        This is only place where I saw negative review of PK . Don't trust the review at all
                        Reply
                        1. I
                          Israel Zindabad
                          Jan 23, 2015 at 6:22 am
                          This is only place where I saw negative review of PK . Don't trust the review at all
                          Reply
                          1. S
                            SUMIT ARORA
                            Jan 29, 2015 at 5:36 am
                            This is a good movie, an edge of the seat thriller, very well directed. Nowhere does the movie stall, as mentioned by the reviewer. The only flaw in the movie is that K K Menon's character should have been developed and given more screen time. As far as stereotyping is concerned, you cannot make a movie with this subject matter and no stereotyping (however using the word pandering is an exaggeration)Further, what's wrong with a movie being simple, does it have to be complicated to be good??The reviewer is either biased or does not know how to analyse a movie.
                            Reply
                            1. A
                              Anti FP
                              Jan 23, 2015 at 9:18 am
                              Another stani news paper offcourse after FirstPost.
                              Reply
                              1. A
                                Anti FP
                                Jan 23, 2015 at 9:18 am
                                Another stani news paper offcourse after FirstPost.
                                Reply
                                1. A
                                  Ajay Kumar
                                  Jan 23, 2015 at 12:49 pm
                                  Its not just filmmakers, reviewers also follow stereotypes.. These formula based reviews are funnier and more predictable than Bollywood formula movies..These were the people who were running Censor board... We have people in every walks of life forcing their ideologies and agendas on us.. Good riddance..
                                  Reply
                                  1. A
                                    Ajay Kumar
                                    Jan 23, 2015 at 12:49 pm
                                    Its not just filmmakers, reviewers also follow stereotypes.. These formula based reviews are funnier and more predictable than Bollywood formula movies..These were the people who were running Censor board... We have people in every walks of life forcing their ideologies and agendas on us.. Good riddance..
                                    Reply
                                    1. B
                                      Baby is
                                      Jan 24, 2015 at 2:43 pm
                                      Mrs. Reviewer are u damm mad???
                                      Reply
                                      1. B
                                        Barin Desai
                                        Jan 23, 2015 at 8:20 pm
                                        if PK was 4 start baby deservers 5. if pk was 1.5 baby should be 2.5
                                        Reply
                                        1. B
                                          Barin Desai
                                          Jan 23, 2015 at 8:20 pm
                                          if PK was 4 start baby deservers 5. if pk was 1.5 baby should be 2.5
                                          Reply
                                          1. C
                                            cany
                                            Jan 23, 2015 at 11:52 am
                                            dont mind would like to know how writers, columnist or critics rate any film. Is there a protocol for this- personal based, script based, actor based, TRP or box office hit based, writers view point based, audience poll, overall things related to any movie namely story, entertainemnt, social issue, creativity, plot, climax.
                                            Reply
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