By: Gaurav Malani, IndiaFM
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Yash Raj Films is testing new territories. Gone are the days when the banner was restricted to just mush and romance.
-for every Hum Tum, they have a Dhoom
-for every Fanaa, they have a Kabul Express
Kabul Express is the next outing from Yash Raj Films and from its trailer, it promises to be one helluva adventurous ride. The movie is about a news channel team of a director (John Abraham) and a cinematographer (Arshad Warsi) venturing to Afghanistan to shoot a documentary film on the Taliban and the adventures (or say misadventures) that come their way.
The theatrical trailer opens with John Abraham and Arshad Warsi jumping on Afghan land from a hovering helicopter and approaching the only noticeable Afghani in vision for directions to the country's capital, Kabul. As the man talks on the intercom in an alien Afghani language, he arranges their means of transport in the form a war tank. There are no cabs or buses in this foreign land.
Aboard the tank, they proceed on the rugged terrains of Afghanistan, deserted in every sense. Soon the duo is seen held captive by the Taliban. The trailer subsequently goes to introduce the five lead protagonists of the film.
- Two Indians (John and Arshad)
- One American
- One Afghan
- One Pakistani
5 people from different worlds. Their paths destined to cross in a country devastated by war.
The seemingly chronologically edited trailer consequently shows scenes and scenarios not much familiar to the Indian audiences. And that's essentially the USP of Kabul Express. The camera beautifully captures the virgin locales of Afghanistan, untouched and untapped on the Indian screen, so far.
Arshad Warsi effortlessly plays the part of the funnyman. In an action-adventure film, the man adds spontaneous humor and gets the wittiest one-liners.
The promo takes a serious twist with a bullet traversing the skull of an innocent victim. A one-legged handicapped boy demands the viewer's mercy. The Afghan in the group expresses his concerns towards his country saying what the terrorists got by destroying the beautiful land of Afghanistan.
The last frame of the trailer calls for your attention as the team gaze out of the windscreen of their jeep with frozen expressions and Arshad Warsi reveals the identity of the person they are gazing at, to be that of 'Osama Bin Laden'.
Produced by Aditya Chopra, Kabul Express is written and directed by debutante Kabir Khan. This would be one of the first films in recent times to be shot on actual locations in Afghanistan. Amitabh Bachchan's Khuda Gawah was one of the last films to be shot there. Even Manisha Koirala's Escape From Taliban was shot in the hilly terrains of Ladakh that made up for Afghanistan.
Kabul Express has both, the setting and the story, as its strength.