Antim Review: With his very first scene, director Mahesh Manjrekar sets the stage for a rebellious gangster story as Rahulya rushes to rescue his poor father Satya (Sachin Khedekar), who is beaten up by an unscrupulous land mafioso. The same man has also appropriated their ancestral farmland. What follows is Rahul’s rapid transformation from an unemployed youth to a feared mobster, as Pune’s most influential goon Nanya Bhai (Upendra Limaye) takes him under his wing. But there is a problem. Inspector Rajveer Singh (Salman Khan), who knows how and when to use brains and brawn to clear the city of every evil – from rowdy rapists and power-hungry politicians to weapon-wielding gundas.
It’s a premise tailored for a mass entertainer with room for heavy action. But this one has more dialogubaazi than dhishoom-dhishoom and that often hinders the speed of the story. Thankfully, there’s a major plot twist in the first half itself that helps build and maintain the momentum for an all-important showdown in the second half. Set primarily in a Marathi domain, Manjrekar deftly captures the flavor of rural and urban Maharashtra with Karan Rawat’s immersive cinematography, highlighted by sweeping wide-angle shots that showcase the city’s unabated growth. This is further cemented by casting many Marathi actors in key character roles. Still, the film suffers from too many characters and repeated conflicts that extend the running time. Add to that the fact that there are about four songs that feel absolutely forced and lack any semblance of melody.
Salman Khan is back in his police avatar and this time as a fearless Sardar. Portraying a cop is easy for Salman as he plays to the gallery, takes off his shirt and smashes the bad guys to a pulp. Aayush Sharma gets the right look with his sculpted body and makes an honest effort to match Bhai’s mojo. The actor has certainly come a long way since his first film and tried his best to live Rahul’s pain and glory with conviction. It succeeds to an extent, but the overall writing style of the film could have been tighter, less melodramatic and preachy. His chemistry with debutante Mahima Makwana, who plays his love interest Manda, is rather bland and often puts a damper on the pace of the film.
With intense action and drama (a tad too much), ‘Antim: The Final Truth’ ticks some boxes for mass entertainment. It also highlights the issue of land grabs by mafia dons, who manage to bend the law, as they are often hand in hand with the politicians. So, if you like over-the-top old-school Bollywood movies with a profusion of just about everything, ‘Antim: The Final Truth’ might just be for you.