Shamshera review: Ranbir Kapoor starrer gives an epic cinematic experience but it is too dramatic and far toooo long

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Film: Shamshera

Director: Karan Malhotra

Star cast: Ranbir Kapoor, Vaani Kapoor, Sanjay Dutt, Ronit Bose Roy, Saurabh Shukla, Craig McGinlay

Bollywood Bubble ratings: 3/5 stars





Shamshera Movie Review:

Caste or race discrimination has always been a matter of concern across the globe. Be it white people enslaving the blacks or Brahmins showing they are the powerful ones over the Shudras. The ‘oonchi jaat, the neechi jaat’ taboo will always exist no matter how liberal-minded you are. The hatred towards the low caste people will always be present in some people no matter how many generations come and go. And that’s when Shamshera, a rebel with a cause, rises above all odds. The movie tries to explain the racial discrimination against a certain tribe and what caused them to become rebellious against society. However, the freedom struggle of the dacoits gets a little too dramatic and far toooooooooo long. Ranbir Kapoor starrer Shamshera, set in the British era, is about a man who only asks for equality, a respected place in society and, most importantly, freedom for himself and his tribe.


Set in the 1800s, in the fictitious city of Kaza, a warrior tribe called Khameeran faced ostracism from the society that made them rebels. They then become dacoits and chant one Mantra: ‘ Karma se dacoit aur Dharma is Azad. However, after falling into prey, the tribe is imprisoned, enslaved and tortured by a ruthless authoritarian Shudh Singh. Shamshera is a legend for his tribe who relentlessly fights for his tribe’s freedom & dignity. However, his legacy is then continued by his son Balli who also strives hard to make his people free from enslavement.

Star Performances:

Ranbir Kapoor plays the dual role of father and son- Shamshera and Balli. If Shamshera is calm, Balli is fire. If Shamshera is composed and calculative, Balli is a free-spirited man. Ranbir effortlessly plays both the characters, thus, making you believe in the character. Seeing him in Sanju was a fresh change; honestly, he even impressed me with his act. Considering that Ranbir is a stellar actor, he didn’t disappoint me this time. What amazed me was his action sequence. I don’t remember when I have seen him last in the lethal mode.

Vaani Kapoor plays the role of a dance performer Sona who looks beautiful and charming. However, when it comes to her character, she doesn’t offer anything new to the film. A) she was barely there in the film and B) She seemed like a filler in the film.

Sanjay Dutt essays the role of an inspector named Shudh Singh who is a menace, greedy, ruthless man. He only cares about his gold and feels superior to the other caste. Sanjay once again plays the role of antagonist and much to my disappointment, the character was a dud! Sanjay being a powerful actor was a let-down in the movie. Just like his previous character as Adheera, the villainous power seemed to have gone out of the window in Shamshera as well. If you loved Sanjay Dutt as Kancha Cheena in Agneepath, then you’ll be extremely baulked to accept him as Shudh Singh. 

Direction/ Screenplay:

Director Karan Malhotra who has previously helmed Agneepath and Brothers brings out another gritty film with Shamshera. I can’t say that this movie will remain in my head forever. Don’t want to compare this film with anyone else as every movie is unique and special in its own way; however, Shamshera reminded me of quite a few films, even his own Agneepath. Right from using undertone colours to give a rustic feel, Shamshera gave out a little vibe of Yash starrer KGF. Speaking about the story, the theme of a son striving to free his people from enslavement and carrying forward the legacy of his father reminded me of the Baahubali series.

I liked the cinematography of the film, it is quite commendable. Whereas the action sequence is well executed and choreographed which looks raw.


In totality, Ranbir Kapoor starrer Shamshera gives an epic cinematic experience if only I neglect the melodrama and the pace of the film. For me, the film ended in the first half as it was quite predictable what is going to happen in the second half of the film which was a drag.

Watch the Shamshera trailer here after reading the review:


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Also read: EXCLUSIVE: Ranbir Kapoor reveals why he agreed to do Shamshera: It was a gift of God, came at the right time