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Movie review: Rustom - A likely entertaining legal-suspense-drama
When one begins watching `Rustom', it almost becomes apparent that it's one of those flashy period-dramas presented in typical Bollywood masala style; all inclusive of a majestic-looking sneak peek into the 1950s era and that dramatic `hero-ki-entrance' of Commander Rustom Pavri.
However, little do we know that the mystic events to follow surrounding the depicted seemingly 'open-and-shut murder case' shall lead us into a gripping legal whodunit.

Based upon the 1959 "KM Nanavati vs state of Maharashtra trial" of a decorated Indian Naval officer, that was encircled by nationwide public and diplomatic curiosity. The first major instances of "trial by media" and nothing short of a phenomenon back then.

As firmly quoted, "kaanoon ke pehle public decide karti hai" – indeed puts the public with its mainly authentic narrative hooked for longer run. Cdr Pavri defends himself for being "not guilty". Subsequently, during the course of film, one realizes that the differences between "not guilty" and "innocent" may seem the same and yet, distinctly different.

Akshay Kumar is "good". Emotes his early-seasoned skills as the protagonist who murders his friend for adultery with his own wife, and gets apparently entangled in the multi-facet theories of a murderer, and even a traitor.

The director Tinu Suresh Desai, whose previous "1920 London" didn't turn out very interesting, has made a major improvement. Though, the real-winner this time is the screenwriting by Vipul Rawal, where perhaps a historically-significant case could have been turned banal.

The legal-suspense-drama almost lives up to the expectation of becoming a "thriller" which is ably and much-engrossingly supported by the very known faces - Pawan Malhotra (as the senior investigator), Kumud Singh (as the news-paper editor), Sachin Khedkar (the public-prosecutor), and especially Anang Desai (the hilarious/serious judge). Arjan Bajwa, Esha Gupta, Illean D'Cruz, Parmeet Sethi are all fairly decent as well, though, could have been utilized better.

The viewers would find themselves laughing hard on silly-quips and also, holding breath amidst the tension. Though, the historical goof-ups and the undulating pace of the film could have been managed better.

Passable as a decent watch. I am going with 7.5/10.

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