Movie: Satellite Shankar
Cast: Sooraj Pancholi, Megha Akash
Direction: Irfan Kamal
Ratings: 2.5 stars
The story revolves around an army man named Shankar, who’s based in the Northernmost part of the country, Kashmir. Starting from the beginning sequence itself, it shows Shankar as the most righteous, ethical and sublime man around, whose only aim in life is to help the needy and fortify his motherland against potential threat and danger. However, amidst all these duties and bravery, there comes a situation where he is required to take a hiatus of 8 days to visit his mother, who’s residing in the southern-most part of the country, Pollachi. So Shankar makes an ‘Army Promise’ to his Commander General and is granted leave based on the condition that he will be back on duty exactly after 8 days.
An ecstatic and jubilant Shankar sets off to travel to Pollachi to meet his mother, but as usual, in order to fit in to the requirements of a typical Bollywood film, the journey isn’t a facile & easy-peasy one. Throughout the entire journey (6 days), he faces innumerable and myriad hiccups & impediments. However, the braveheart that Shankar is, he manages to get the better of every obstacle that comes his way with both his physical and mental grit and strength. The entire narrative shows Shankar as that one guy who’s extremely empathetic and sympathetic towards people and their grief and sadness, and come what may, he’s always ready and willing to help people and their growth. The movie is an extremely ‘feel good’ kind of in nature and it will make you believe that there’s an element of niceness and large-heartedness in this country. Shankar, from the very beginning, plays a pivotal role in uniting the country together. The climax of the movie takes you through an emotional roller-coaster ride where the man who has been helping and assisting everyone on the planet requires assistance himself, and in a very beautiful and emotional fashion, is helped by the same people to go back to his army regiment, so that he can keep his soldier’s promise.
IWMBuzz Verdict: There has been a lot of performance pressure on Sooraj Pancholi. The actor has had the most perfect debut ever, backed by the country’s biggest superstar, Salman Khan, in the form of ‘Hero’. However, not many, including Sooraj, would have thought that he would have had to wait for as long as 4 years for his second film to release. Hence, the added burden on Sooraj to prove his mettle was always there, but he seems to have got the trick right with this one and his performance as Shankar is the biggest proof of the fact that the lad can act. The writing however seems weak and there’s simply no ‘unpredictability’ factor in the entire screenplay throughout. Director Irfan Kamal has the right intention and vision when it comes to telling an emotional story, which would make us feel more empathetic towards the life of a soldier. But it’s the weak writing that takes the film a little downhill. The second half catches pace compared to a rather slow first half. Sooraj Pancholi seems to be the only saving grace in the film, as he successfully manages to capture the emotions of a soldier battling it out between his national duty and personal commitments. The efforts are visible for sure and he can easily be branded as the ‘best part’ of the film. Those intriguing innocent eyes will make you fall for his vision for sure. The story is gripping but a movie is always about translating a gripping and effective story plot into a workable screenplay and that’s where Satellite Shankar proves to be only average. Some of the dialogues are effective and will make you feel the emotion of every slide attached to the sequence, but that’s also not the most exceptional either. Overall, it is Sooraj Pancholi’s charm, honesty and true efforts that can be seen and felt in every frame of the movie, and which makes Satellite Shankar a one-time watchable film for sure.