Special Ops 1.5 Review: Neeraj Pandey & co. don’t justify Himmat Singh’s aura in this half baked series

Updated on Nov 12, 2021 08:08 PM IST  |  221.5K
Special Ops 1.5 Review: Neeraj Pandey & co. don’t justify Himmat Singh’s aura in this half backed series
Special Ops 1.5 Review: Neeraj Pandey & co. don’t justify Himmat Singh’s aura in this half backed series

Directed by: Neeraj Pandey & Shivam Nair

Star Cast: Kay Kay Menon, Vinay Pathak, Aftab Shivdasani

Platform: Disney+Hotstar

Rating: 2.5/5

After introducing us to the world of Special Ops, Neeraj Pandey now comes up with season 1.5 to his espionage franchise showcasing the backstory of his protagonist, Himmat Singh (Kay Kay Menon). It’s more of a mini series of near about 170 minutes split into four episodes and this time around, Pandey and his co-director, Shivam Nair, make an attempt to establish the politics that exist in R&AW and merge it with the world of global terrorism.

Much like the first season, Neeraj and Shivam bring in a closure to the core plot of this web show with constant influx of flashback scenes under the garb of interrogation. They adopt a non-linear narrative and the plot in totality on paper is interesting enough to grab attention of creative forces. However, it’s too simplistic a tale, with an extremely repetitive screenplay that’s devoid of any major surprise element. While the non-linear narrative attempts to make things interesting, the final product leaves us with a void in terms of thrills, drama and emotions. The finale too is underwhelming and rather, unrealistic to say the least as one expects lot more from a seasoned filmmaker like Neeraj Pandey.

The cinematography is top notch, but, the action scenes surprisingly are shoddily done with poor camera work and extremely dull action choreography. The background score tries to build the tension, but the story just doesn’t have enough edge of the seat moments. In-fact, the core premise required an even tighter screentime to leave an impact, as some of the sub plots could have easily been done away with. The dialogues are just about decent, with the best being reserved for Abbas Shaikh’s (Vinay Pathak) interrogation scenes. The dialogues bring in the subtle humor to the picture, making it raise above the other routine moments.

Talking of performances, Kay Kay Menon gets a distinct identity to his character of a RAW agent, that’s diametrically different from what one has seen in feature films and other web-series. Vinay Pathak as Abbas alongside Parmeet Sethi and Kali Prasad Mukherjee are among the better actors of this mini-series, who make the proceedings a little entertaining. Aftab Shivdasani does well, however falls the prey of an undercooked character, that doesn’t really have an arc to leave a mark. Aadil Khan as the main antagonist, Maninder Singh is just about decent, as is his partner in crime, Aishwarya Sushmita. Neither of them has the menacing quality that needed in an antagonist.

All in all, Special Ops 1.5 is a below average tale as one needed a much bigger and complex conflict to establish the back story of the character that Himmat Singh is today. The makers opted a rather formula driven and convenient approach, which is too simple a follow up for something as complex as Special Ops. It a half-baked series that has some good moments, but doesn’t justify the aura of Himmat Singh!

Also Read| EXCLUSIVE: Aftab Shivdasani on Special Ops 1.5, being bracketed in comic space & possibility of Masti sequel


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