Release Date: 03 August 2019
Starcast: Kartar Cheema, GURI, Sawan Rupowali, Nikeet Dhillon, Rahul Jungral, Victor John, Sanjeev Attri, Navdeep Kaler, Karan Battan, Vicky Suvinder & Seema Kaushal
Producer: Khushwinder Parmar, Swapan Monga, Anmol Monga, Vipan Gill, Balkar Bhullar, KV Dhillon
Director: Manav Shah
Synopsis: Sikander 2 is about the return of a gangster back in the dirty game but this time, for someone he calls family. Sikander finds a new home and a steady life in a village until his 'so-called' younger brother chooses to go to Panjab University for higher studies. Influenced by the glorified gangster culture, this collegiate ends up joining hands with some notorious ruffians and lands himself into unforeseen trouble. When he calls for help, the transformation of an agriculturist Teji to the dreaded Sikander is what the film holds for you.
Review: If you've watched Sikander a day or two ago just like me then I am sure you'll feel the same way as me that the original lacked a lot in terms of performances and overall presentation. Though the film was powerful, it wasn't really the best use of talent. But from the very opening scene of Sikander 2, I got the vibe that this film will be a treat to watch.
Sikander 2 opens with a shootout followed by a quick flashback of its prequel reminding us that Sikander (Kartar Cheema) was shot to death by one of his opponents, Pandit (Victor John). Sikander survives and ends up living with a mother (Seema Kaushal) and her son Balli (Guri) who love him like their own. The man chooses to lead a changed lifestyle and utters no word about his past, thus no one really knows who he is. Now named Teji, this simple man is an agriculturist who is only bothered about his crops and his family. Balli, on the other hand, is young blood that's bubbling to steam out and often indulges in petty fights. His family gets him enrolled in Panjab University, Chandigarh and that's where this bud blooms into a flower.
Leaving his mother and Teji urf Sikander back in the village, Balli moves to the PU hostel sharing his room with Tooti (Shivam Sharma) and as days pass, gets acquainted with a student party and gains momentum as a popular face in the Uni owing to his singing and daring attitude. He falls for Bindu (Nikeet Dhillon) who reciprocates the same feelings and they end up as a couple.
The real game starts when the student elections approach and Balli gets picked up by Lakha (Rahul Jungral) as his star campaigner opposite the 4 years winning party of Pandit (Victor John). Besides these two, there is also a party lead by Kiran (Sawan Rupowali) that wants to overthrow the rule of power-hungry gangster parties to bring about a positive change in the uni.
How Balli gets used and traded and what finally brings back Sikander to the foreground to save his younger sibling from this ugly racket is what you must watch in the theatre.
Now let's talk about the actors:
Kartar Cheema: Brilliant work! His journey from a boy to a man is evident from the journey back and forth in time and the way he has controlled his expressions is nothing less than excellent. His look as Teji does make you sympathize with his lifestyle but the contrast as Sikander makes you fall for him head over heels. The man has carried his guilt throughout his psychological metamorphosis in his eyes till the last moment in the film and that's his winning point which makes you fall in love with this heroic not-an-antagonist nor protagonist character. His role is amazingly performed and has been put across as a very powerful message to the youth of today, but without being preachy. Hats off!
Guri: As a debutante in the film world, Guri has been pretty impressive. His role as a rural turned city lad obsessed with guns and pumped with extra energy ready to explode is a pleasure to watch. His dialogue delivery is controlled and his slang is raw, thus relatable. We'd love to see him in more films soon.
Nikeet Dhillon: As the debut actress, Nikeet is young and fresh. She does need to work on her dialogue delivery as it seemed a little stunted at times but overall she was a breath of fresh air and we do hope to see more of her in times to come.
Sawan Rupowali: Sawan is an expressive artist and she does speak through her eyes. She had a supporting character that gets fascinated by Teji's innocence and intellect but ultimately confronts Sikander's reality. She's played her bit fairly well.
Rahul Jungral: As Lakha, Rahul's innocent expressions and his urge to finally get his hands on the winning seat of elections, is a contrast but the man carries it too well. His character stands at par with Victor John's and these two men are the leading opponents for student elections in this film. Their clash and their trade are both brutal yet are presented in the most believable manner. Well performed Rahul.
Victor John: As Pandit, he did shine in the prequel but in this one, he's outdone himself. His get-up, his weight gain, and his maturity have all worked in his favor. A power-loving criminal, Pandit is the last in line to confront Sikander and his fate is sealed when Sikander remembers his last meeting with him, in the prequel. Great work Victor.
Manjit Singh: As Shimla, Manjit's character stayed with us. The zarda eating guy who is part of the gang only to fulfill his addiction and needs, Shimla is a character that is so realistically performed by Manjit. His dialogue 'Main thuk sutke phodey krdu' provokes giggles even at this moment.
Navdeep Kaler: Another addict, Navdeep's role is yet again an entertaining one. His non-serious gang member bit adds to the comic element in the film. His li'l ponytail on the head was a good keep for this role.
The abovementioned characters stood out among all the others who played their parts very well. Each actor has done his/her bit to the best of what was offered to them, therefore the output was fantabulous.
Director Manav Shah has totally impressed us with his work in this genre. We'd really want him to stick to this genre if he is so good at it. At no point did the film feel directionless or lost. It kept us on the edge of our seat throughout. The innovative style introduced by the director turns this film into a thrilling drama, which has pace and rhythm to hold you captive. Kudos to you Manav, what a great presentation.
The story and screenplay by Dheeraj Rattan are fresh, the characters are well-etched and the pacing is rather perfect. The best thing about the movie is the fact that it can be watched time and again, and it will still manage to haunt you afterward.
The dialogues by Gurpreet Bhullar are hard-hitting and create an adrenaline rush.
Music: The songs in the film are enjoyable and the album on a whole is good.
We did miss Nishawn Bhullar and Raj Jhinjer in this one though!
Rating: 4.5/5 (Swaad aa gya)