Baby Review - Exciting Thriller

Actors: Akshay Kumar, Danny Denzongpa, Rana Daggupati, Anupam Kher, Taapsee Pannu, Kay Kay Menon
Director: Neeraj Pandey
Story: Neeraj Pandey

Akshay Kumar has delivered so many duds in recent years that it's a pleasant surprise to watch a decent movie featuring him in the lead role.

Directed and written by Neeraj Pandey, Baby is a fast paced action thriller filmed in Istanbul, parts of Nepal, the deserts of Abu Dhabi and, of course, India.

In a Bollywood filled with idiots, thieves or both, Neeraj Pandey is that rare talented original filmmaker.

Neeraj's 2008 film A Wednesday (Naseeruddin Shah, Anupam Kher) remains one of my favorite Hindi films of all time.

Exciting Thriller

Action films are a rarity in a Bollywood that focuses mostly on silly romances.

And the reason for few Indian action films is simple - We lack the writers, actors and directors to execute a good action film. Indian audiences used to slick Hollywood action films often laugh at feeble Indian attempts to make an action film.

But Baby strikes a different note.

In keeping with the current perilous times around the globe, the central theme of Baby is terrorism.

Ajay (Akshay Kumar) is a member of a top secret agency called Baby that was created after the 26/11 Pakistani terror attacks on Mumbai.

Baby's mandate is to thwart terrorists from carrying out their violent missions in India at any cost.

So the movie begins with Ajay (Akshay Kumar) on a furious chase in the streets of Istanbul to rescue his colleague Rakesh, who's fallen into the hands of terrorists.

During his attempt to rescue Rakesh, Ajay learns of imminent terrorist attacks in Delhi from Jamal, a Baby operative gone rogue.

From then on, the momentum never stops in Baby.

Soon Ajay is back to Delhi before jetting off to Nepal and Saudi Arabia (in reality Abu Dhabi) in a high-wire attempt to capture or kill the terrorists.

This is Akshay Kumar's film.

Fortunately, the man looks fit and does a neat job in the action scenes without any of the flying, leaping rubbish you see in South Indian films.

The other actors (Danny Denzongpa, Rana Dagupatti, Anupam Kher, Kay Kay Menon and Tapsee Pannu) are relegated to supporting roles.

In contrast to his offensively disgusting performances in films like Entertainment, Akshay delivers a restrained performance in Baby.

Kay Kay Menon is effective in a short role as the terrorist Bilal Khan.

Baby Rating

There are few dull moments in Baby thanks to the gripping story line.

Tapsee Pannu acquits herself well in a cameo as an undercover agent tackling a hardened criminal in Nepal.

The photography is extremely well-done, again a rarity in Bollywood.

If I have any gripes, they're about the length of the film (two-hours and 40-minutes) and mediocre music.

With better editing, the film could have been trimmed down by at least 20 minutes.

Although Baby is no Bourne in the action genre, it's most definitely worth watching on the big screen.

Neeraj Pandey and Akshay Kumar deserve kudos for Baby.