Kaamyaab Movie Review: An ode to Hindi Cinema's sidekick with a soulful film.Modified On: 06 March 2020 | Reviewed By: Saurabh S Nair
Sanjay Mishra gives a compelling performance. The actor gets into the nerve of the character and takes you to his world with ease.
Cast: Sanjay Mishra, Deepak Dobriyal, Sarika Singh, Avtar Gill, Isha Talwar, Devas Dixit, Kaurwakee Vasistha
Directed By: Hardik Mehta
Kaamyaab is a true ode to all the character actors in Hindi Cinema which has an audience we know through faces and character names but we don't care to know their real name.
The success of Kaamyaab stems from its lightness of touch. When the film begins, the protagonist, Sudheer (Mishra), is a lonely and forgotten man.
His wife is dead and gone. His daughter Bhavna (Sarika Singh) lives elsewhere in the city with her husband and daughter. He does not have many friends, personal or professional. His return to the industry fold isn't, therefore, a cakewalk.
This man Sudheer on the margins has notched up 499 credits over the decades. Could he, by adding one more role to his resume, cross a personal milestone? That is just what he attempts to do, with a big push by casting director Gulati (Deepak Dobriyal).
Sudheer’s daughter Bhavna (Sarika Singh) disapproves, especially since his last role was in an unsavory production. Sudheer doesn’t lack money and is well-known enough to be recognized when he steps out in an obvious hairpiece and violently floral shirts. And yet, propelled by the compulsion to be true to his vocation, Sudheer takes another bash at taming that unpredictable beast called success.
Kaamyaab reveals the flip side of the city of dreams, as well as the pockmarks that riddle the bright visage of the hyperactive Hindi movie industry. It does so in an engaging manner that celebrates Hindi cinema's unsung 'side actors' whose careers are unfortunately more about mere numbers than genuine creative highs. They enjoy longevity under the arc lights but little leeway in terms of authentic fame and popularity.
Before getting imprisoned by the formulaic fetters of the film industry it seeks to critique, Kaamyaab keeps the spotlight firmly on the other guys. Several character actors appear as themselves – among them, Manmauji, Lilliput, Avtar Gill, Viju Khote and Ramesh Goel – and it’s a pity that the movie doesn’t do more with them. A running gag about the rivalry between Sudheer and Gill is similarly underutilized but is bittersweet enough to earn laughs.
In the glittering spotlight accompanying stardom many others get washed out. While the film does a fine job of putting across this point, it somewhere restricts itself and doesn’t delve deeper into the subject. But even if mostly operating on the surface level, the requisite emotional playoff makes it a fulfilling experience.
Sanjay Mishra brings to life the portrait of a man who mines the wisdom and vulnerability that comes with growing old. It’s a hat tip to his own on-screen avatars where Mishra has flawlessly played every character and yet the loudest cheers and whistles are reserved for the entry of the superstar.
Kaamyaab is an ode to not just the larger-than-life victory laps on the big screen but also the quiet struggle in staying afloat in everyday life. It's a must-watch film aur option kya hai.
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