The Family Man 2 REVIEW: Not your ‘minimum guy’ Manoj Bajpayee, Sharib, Samantha starrer is G.S.O.A.T

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Web Series: The Family Man 2

Cast: Manoj Bajpayee, Priyamani, Samantha Akkineni, Sharib Hashmi, Sharad Kelkar, Neeraj Madhav,  Dalip Tahil, Sunny Hinduja, Shreya Dhanwanthary.

Director: Raj & DK, Suparn Verma

Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

Stars: 

First up, let’s admit Srikant Tiwari (Manoj Bajpayee) is anything but a ‘minimum guy’.

The Family Man Season 2 is back with a new mission this time. Between his tedious efforts to lead a ‘normal’ life playing the IT guy, Srikant sees himself following a new mission assigned to TASC. The Family Man 2 starts with the focus on the military training of the Srilankan Tamil rebel group members who plan to disrupt the bilateral talks between India and Sri Lanka. The TASC is ordered to find out its plan and neutralize the efforts. Away from all the action, Srikant is seen struggling to bond with his family and be the ‘minimum’ guy his obnoxiously self-centered IT Boss refers to him as. Talpade calls it FOMO (fear of missing out) as Srikant enquires about the mission. I found it extremely endearing yet funny, Talpade (Sharib Hashmi) briefing Srikant in the midst of the mission, whilst being annoyed at him. This is a classic bromance on display, reminded me of Amar and Prem or Jay and Veeru, our poster boys for bromance in Hindi films. After failing to stay away from the action, Srikant is reinstated to TASC and what follows later is a rollercoaster ride.

The first season of The Family Man saw Srikant torn between being a ‘family man’ and ‘government agent’. This season saw him confronting one of his biggest fears after the said mission puts his family in jeopardy. Spread across 9 episodes with a run time of 40 mins each (approx), The Family Man 2 keeps you on the edge as TASC takes on the Srilankan Tamil rebel groups that include Raji (Samantha Akkineni)  who has received training in aviation and is crucial to the mission. Srilankan Tamil rebels group believes that their sacrifice is to seek freedom for Tamils and that ‘martyrs are never dead’.

Despite being warned by the intel, Indian PM Basu wants to hold the bilateral meet in Chennai in a show of her strength. The strength of The Family Man 2 lies in his intelligent writing and dialogues. In a light moment between two colleagues, Talpade says ‘I am ready to die for the nation but not for the politicians,’ to which Srikant replies, ‘Our job is towards the nation and the one who holds the power to run the nation, it doesn’t matter who is on that seat.’ It is in these scenes the conflict, the dilemma, and the sincerity towards their duty are highlighted and how. There is also a scene where the thin line between terrorists and extremists is discussed. What separates the two? Well, the show subtly makes you question your judgments as well.

 

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The screenplay for The Family Man 2 takes you back and forth between London (where the masterminds are operating) and Chennai, Mumbai, and then Chennai again. The cinematographer needs a special mention for ensuring the action sequences don’t look overly dramatized. The choreography and placement of action sequences are done with full details and full marks to the makers for that. Small details were focused on, from Srikant and Talpade’s struggle with the local language (Tamil) to sweaty arms (when Srikant visits JK at the hospital) from running throughout the day to the camera held free-hand in the climax scene, giving it a documentary approach. Absolutely loved the Chase scene between Sajid (one of the rebels) and Srikant’s team in a society where commoners hide between windows to see the action as gunshots echo.

A lot of efforts were made to shoot at real locations. Raj and DK’s ability to effortlessly swift between action and humor and to lace it with thrill is exceptional. There were hardly any loopholes on that part and nothing seemed forced. Of course, no script is flawless but the ability to hide those flaws and rise above them is what The Family Man 2 does beautifully.

 

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Manoj Bajpayee yet again tells us why he is no ordinary actor. He is one of those actors who can change the mood of the scene in seconds. He is effortless as he struggles to understand the new age acronyms (ROFL, Sham, GAL, FOMO) or has a ‘woke’ conversation with his family, and is equally confused about his wife asking for a break, meeting a marriage counselor, a concept many couples are oblivious to. His ability to react to a situation continues to surprise me. He is well supported by Sharib Hashmi as Talpade. Their comic timings together and Alone will make you LOL (Laugh our Loud, I am learning too, you see).

 

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Samantha is refreshing as Raji, a strong nemesis who has received military training. She is no damsel and doesn’t pretend to be. Scenes, where she has to practice, restrain to stop herself from exposing her identity are beautifully shot. There is a scene where she gets triggered after a man slaps her for not responding to his sexual needs. At that moment, Raji’s vulnerability is shown, and Samantha stands out for me in that. Samantha had a lot of shows as Raji, thankfully the writers did not let her character become caricaturish. Everyone in the supporting cast was well cast and performed brilliantly.

This is what makes The Family Man 2 G.S.O.A.T. No, it is not a typo. I meant Greatest Show of All Time, ya!

You can watch The Family Man 2 on Amazon Prime Video.

Also Read: EXCLUSIVE: Samantha Akkineni & Manoj Bajpayee heap praises on Shahid Kapoor: He hasn’t done full justice to the talent that he has