REVIEW: “War” (2019)

The third installment in the now expanding TRF Spy Universe is the aptly titled “War”, a brawny Bollywood blockbuster that rivals any big-budget tentpole movie Hollywood puts out today. It’s a bit like “Mission: Impossible” meets “Fast and Furious” but with its own special sauce that fans of Indian action cinema will immediately recognize. It makes for a movie that’s exhilarating from start to finish and one with enough pizzazz to keep its audience glued to every eye-popping frame.

“War” is directed with style and verve by Siddharth Anand who more recently has directed the universe’s fourth film, 2023’s “Pathaan”. In “War”, Anand went BIG with his action scenes and clearly spared no expense. Taking place in stunningly shot locations all around the world, his set pieces are second to none and include a wild shootout in Tikrit, a killer pursuit across the rooftops of Marrakesh, a jaw-dropping motorcycle chase through Lisbon (that must be seen to be believed), and a sports car showdown in the Arctic Circle.

Adding to film’s list of strengths are the terrific lead performances from its two leads, Hrithik Roshan and Tiger Shroff. Both have leading man charisma as well as the gritty physicality their roles demands. But they also have the ability and the smarts to dial their performances down whenever a scene needs them to. Ultimately it adds a level of believability to their characters, even in the instances when the delightfully over-the-top action sticks them in some pretty wild and crazy situations.

The story moves at a propulsive pace and is full of twists and unexpected turns. Shroff plays Captain Khalid Rahmani, a RAW agent desperate to regain his family’s honor after his disgraced father betrayed his country and was killed as a result. Khalid was trained by one of RAW’s best agents, Major Kabir Dhaliwal (Roshan). Kabir was hesitant to take Khalid into his special unit, because of his father’s bad name. But Khalid proves himself in the field and earns Kabir’s trust. Kabir agrees to train Khalid, and the two develop a friendship.

But when Kabir suddenly assassinates a high ranking RAW official, it’s left to a shocked and hurt Khalid to hunt down and eliminate his former mentor. But that proves to be easier said than down as Kabir always seems to be one step ahead of Khalid and his team (much like the movie is with its audience). Every time we feel we have a grasp of where things are going, Anand throws us a curveball. Admittedly, a couple of the twists are utterly preposterous. But they’re also wildly entertaining.

While its story (written by a team of four that includes Anand) earns its spy thriller stripes, there’s so much more that makes “War” click. I mentioned Roshan and Shroff who are in perfect tune with their characters and each other. And again, there’s the incredible vistas that are exquisitely shot by DP Benjamin Jasper. There’s also the remarkable fight sequences put together by South Korean martial arts choreographer Se-yeong Oh. The extraordinary production design, the (mostly) incredible digital effects, the energetic but not overbearing score – all key ingredients that Anand uses to the fullest.

“War” is a thrilling ride built on a big vision and even bigger ambition. There’s not a dull moment to be found in the film’s hefty 154-minute runtime, and it does a great job leaving its audience hungry for more. As for its standing in the growing TRF Spy Universe, it’s hard to tell right now. A sequel to “War” is said to be in the works, and its connection to “Tiger 3”, the fifth film in the universe due out later this year, remains to be seen. But even on its own, “War” delivers everything action fans will want, plus some. “War” is available on VOD and streaming on Amazon Prime Video.


15 thoughts on “REVIEW: “War” (2019)

  1. Honestly, this is one of the best Bollywood action movies I’ve ever seen. I would say that Baaghi and Baaghi 2 are also fantastic, and Tiger Shroff is the main lead in those. He’s got some stuff coming up that I really want to see including the Bollywood version of Rambo. War is actually the first Bollywood movie that I own on Blu-Ray. But holy moly, is that stuff expensive. I paid close to 50 bucks for the disc, but it comes in a nifty orange-colored Blu-Ray case that I’d never seen before.

      • I found it on, but it doesn’t look like they carry it anymore. has 1 copy left. Amazon carries a copy or two, but there’s also I warn you, it’s not going to be cheap. The cheapest that I saw was at for about 30 bucks, but it’s been a while since the film was out, so the price dropped a bit. I would google Bollywood movie dealers. You’ll get the best results that way.

  2. Pingback: REVIEW: “War” (2019) - Keith & the Movies » Apexhope

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