Commando - A One Man Army (India)

Holy cow guys. If you've ever wanted to see mashup of Commando, Roadhouse, Bourne, Last of  the Mohicans and a crazy dance party - with a touch of Gymkata thrown in - then have I got just to thing for you. Model turned actor, Vidyut Jamwal, the muscles of Mumbai (I may have made that up) flying kicks his way through legions of goons mainly to unwind and blow off some steam after a year of torture at the hands of the Chinese. Oh, and to clean up a corrupt politician culture and get the girl. Did I mention that the film opens with an announcement that he does all his own stunts with no wire-work or CGI? I know, I know ... I had you at Commando meets Roadhouse. You're gonna want to see Commando - A One Man Army - just trust me on this one.

The titular commando crash lands during routine helicopter training inside of China (nope, that seems shady to me also)g. For political reasons he's treated as a spy and the political elite let him twist in the wind. But due to a stunningly awesome monologue from his commanding officer we learn that such commandos are national treasures. In fact his description of what a commando is sounded suspiciously like a series of Chuck Norris Jokes. My favorite part being that if you take ten of the world's most poisonous snakes that would form a commando's breakfast.

Being transported for a sham trial our hero escapes and makes his way back into Indian territory. On the way he rescues the films gorgeous though often oddly unconcerned leading lady. She's trying to sneak out of town to avoid a shotgun marriage to villain AK. A politician with a penchant for sadistic murder and horribly corny jokes that are continually texted to him throughout the film (not making that part up). A short while later a dozen or so baddies for hire lie beaten or dead on the ground. Before we know it the couple are evading capture through the jungle occasionally stopping to unleash the dogs of war (or more specifically his mad commando skills) on the pursuers. They're on the run - but not without lots of time to stop and flirt. When he's not killing a dozen men at a time with his bare hands.

I wasn't especially thrilled with the portrayal of the female character. Though at the end there's a pseudo feminist "you're the first man to believe in me" bit she's more often written as an offensively silly woman. By which I mean there's a beaming smile on her face as she's being chased through the jungle. Not a concern in sight. Though I suppose if I was in the company of Jamwal with his buff bod, great looks and ability to fight in a way that  difficult to believe (because of how incredibly cool it is) perhaps I would be whistling while I ran also.

Being a Bollywood production there are a seies of dance numbers. They mostly make sense in context and are catchy enough. Though for me that's not the reason to see the film. See it for the action combined with a bit of cheesiness. Your inner Gymkata fan will be glad you did.* I'll be keeping an eye out for Jamwal ... this guy is seriously going places.

* this is actually a totally unfair comparison. The action sequences in Commando (Army of One) are super engaging and when you laugh it's typically because Jamwal did something you cannot believe you just saw (or is especially brutal). Though there is definitely a gymnastics element to the moves at times - it's just that he's not going to find a gymnastics horse in the middle of the jungle (as opposed to in Gymkata)

No comments: