REVIEW: The only way Satyameva Jayate 2 (SMJ2) takes ahead from its prequel Satyameva Jayate (SMJ) is by tackling corruption and greed for power. At the onset, writer-director Milap Zaveri and the film’s team have maintained that it’s a massy fare, like the popular cinema of the 1980s. When you see John Abraham turn into a vigilante to punish those who caused the death of innocent citizens, you’re not as surprised as you are when you realise it’s Satya who’s handing out the death penalty, and Jay is being roped in to bring the vigilante to justice.
Milap makes no effort to hide that he’s paying a tribute to the 80s movies, and his pride in that is abundantly evident in the screenplay and dialogues — be it Satya calling the ACP to tell him that he won’t stop punishing the guilty, Jay’s introductory sequence or even Dadasaheb Azad (John Abraham yet again, as their farmer father) single-handedly ploughing a poor farmer’s field, or the brothers wearing saffron and green, fighting each other in the pre-climax. All this and more only adds more masala to the meat of the story.
Besides the menace of corruption, Milap addresses farmers’ suicides, violence against women (Nirbhaya in Delhi, Veterinarian in Telangana), Lokpal Bill, the importance of communal harmony and religious tolerance in good measure as well. The writer-director also makes a telling comment on today’s media and social media that focuses more on capturing news and sensationalising on the cameras and smartphones, even as someone is bleeding to death on the streets in broad daylight.
John Abraham looks comfortable in this old-school, and far too often tried and tested commercial potboiler fare. Be it as the twin brothers or as the father, he plays his triple role with equal ease. If he shows a little restraint as Satya, he doesn’t shy away from playing to the gallery as Jay or as Dadasaheb, a simple farmer leading the fight for the Lokpal Bill to the assembly.
Divya Khosla Kumar is pleasant and has a fairly prominent part to play in this otherwise male-dominated movie. As the righteous Vidya, she minces no words when she disagrees and strongly opposes her husband Satya and her Minister father (Harsh Chhaya) on different issues. Gautami Kapoor lends due support as Dadasaheb’s wife and Satya’s and Jay’s mother. Harsh Chhaya, Annup Sonii, Zakir Hussain, Dayashankar Pandey and Saahil Vaid perform their parts well.
The soundtrack is easy on the ears, be it the wedding song Tenu Lehanga or the Karwa-Chauth track Meri Zindagi Hai Tu, while Nora Fatehi sizzles in the Kusu Kusu number.
The raw hardcore action is the highlight of the film and John doesn’t disappoint — whether he has to lift a motorcycle with a rider and fling it, or rip out the engine of an SUV, or even rip a few metres of earth by smashing his plough in a field. For action lovers, there are several seeti-maar moments to lap up. While we understand the film is a homage of sorts to the over-the-top cinema of the 1980s that we once relished, some scenes like three John Abrahams stopping the helicopter from taking off with their bare hands, could be a blow too hard even for the OTT sensibilities.
If you enjoy the massy masala fare of the bygone era and are willing to take on thrice as much of John Abraham in one frame, you can go indulge in this one.