Laal Kaptan, the story hinges on the age-old human vices of greed, revenge, love for a self-born child, and deceit. It is a Fantasy Epic multi-Chase sequence set in the 18th Century, in which Gossain, a Naga Sadhu (Monk) essayed remarkably by Saif Ali Khan, is put on trial of a Mughal Rahmat Khan who fled after a treasure loot from the Marathas. The story unfolds in the backdrop of 18th century with British, Mughals and Marathas playing a part.
In key roles are a widow that promises to lead Gossain to Rahmat Khan, a gold-digger who has a revenge to seek on Gossain, and hence helps rivals trail him. Flashback reveals Rahmat Khan’s father’s /Brother’s past, with the father being killed due to Rahmat’s deceit. What happens to his brother is, however, is a revelation to check out Laal Kaptaan for.
Laal Kaptan, a story of revenge, greed, and deceit needs to be given special credit for its striking visuals and supreme acting by its lead protagonist, Saif Ali Khan. There is the restraint that Saif displays, a thought-through, almost, vicariously experienced connect with a lost world. An absolute delight to see him experiment with a completely untouched genre of his career, with the panache of a legend. So if you are a Saif Ali Khan Fan, Laal Kaptaan should be seen for his bold choice of work and versatility as an actor.
The plot is engaging for sure, with ample twists and turns, reveals, flashback, but does unfold to encompass a slow, but evolved format of storytelling, with sometimes elusive track-backs. The scenes of Saif’s saadhna, coming out of the water, etc are strong and visually entertaining.
A special mention to the dialogues that lift the overall viewer mood to a fantasy era long gone, which is very much the requirement of the film.
The strong resemblance of Saif’s look to Captain Sparrow of Pirates of the Caribbean, though it looks very enchanting on him, still leaves room in terms of costume originality.