Directed by: #VikramadityaMotwane
“A filmmaker kidnaps the daughter of a movie star, and while the star searches for his daughter the director films the desperate search in real time for his next blockbuster movie.”
Sounds dramatic, right? And it is dramatic, in the most perfect way. AK vs AK depicts a lasting fight between two stars of cinema, that also shines light on the smug industry and the stereotypes it has become accustomed to. There is no hero or usual clear victim in this story, simply egos overtaking each other at any given moment and boundaries being pushed to breaking point. It’s a fight that may or may not have an awarded winner…
AK vs AK is nothing that I anticipated it to be, especially because the story presents a setting that doesn’t match with the typical Bollywood film — no hero, no underdog. It has a little bit of everything packed into 1 hour and 45 minutes and each of which brilliantly balance with the next. The film starts with an easygoing feel, a lot more comedic undertones than what one encounters for the rest of its duration. However, that comedic energy still lingers even as the plot moves forward into a darker space, introducing crime and violence. The progression of threat and bloodshed is seamless as genuine suspense is only seen to build until the final minutes of the film where the truth is revealed. It really is a thrilling rollercoaster of emotions and different atmospheres from start to finish, as well as having a deeper rooted meaning towards stardom overall.
Linking with this is the exceptional establishment of character at the beginning of the film; characterisation available for audiences to connect with can already be noticed within the first couple of minutes. It’s extraordinary — I always desire to immediately become invested in characters as it keeps me a lot more interested in the upcoming events and AK vs AK absolutely nailed this. A worthy round of applause to writers Vikramaditya Motwane and Avinash Sampath!
The cinematography is another aspect of the film that blew me away. Viewers enter the film with the characters through a constant third person perspective; viewers are watching the film from directly behind the camera. The immersive experience this gives is incredible, particularly when paired with the gradual increase of suspense and tension. As an audience member, I sometimes worry that a third person point of view will actually put me off watching due to the amount of films I’ve seen use this technique and unfortunately fail. But there is nothing disorderly about the camerawork in AK vs AK; I don’t think I’ve enjoyed the style to this extent before. Director Vikramaditya Motwane and cinematographer Swapnil S. Sonawane obviously had great communication and understanding throughout filming to succeed in this way.
AK vs AK is a film I highly recommend but to no specific type of person because of how many cinematic elements are incorporated throughout. If you thrive on excitement, high emotion on both ends of the spectrum and intriguing acting experiences then AK vs AK is one to add to your Netflix watchlist.