Naam Shabana trailer: Akshay Kumar seems to dominate this Taapsee Pannu film
Earlier this month, Akshay Kumar and Taapsee Pannu demonstrated a Kudo move in a video on Twitter, encouraging women to defend themselves from sexual predators. Kumar gracefully allowed Pannu to take the centre stage in the video in spite of being her self-confessed guru of martial arts. However, that is not the case with the trailer of their upcoming film, Shivam Nair's Naam Shabana.
Naam Shabana is a spin-off of Neeraj Pandey's 2015 action thriller Baby. It explores the back story of Pannu, who had a brief yet impressive cameo in Baby, and shows how she was roped in as a secret agent by R&AW. However, the trailer suggests that the film seems to be suffering from Baby hangover. Kumar's character constantly tries to steal the spotlight and defend Pannu's character Shabana, on whose life the film is based.
Pannu stands out only because she is the only woman in a trailer peopled with men like Kumar, Anupam Kher, Manoj Bajpayee, Prithviraj and Danny Danzongpa. She has blink and miss action scenes in the trailer not because she is lightening fast but because there are very few of them. While the film may be her story on papers, it banks on the men to accelerate the tension and bring in the audiences.
The film is also similar to Baby with respect to its treatment - fast-paced movement, charged dialogues and staright-faced delivery of punchlines. Pannu fits well in terms of the last aspect as her face remains unusually calm while her voice conveys all the emotions. Bajpayee steals the thunder with a powerful dialogue in the end when he throws light on the burden of responsibility that secret agents carry.
Overall, the trailer makes an impact because of its pace but also evokes a concern that it may compromise with its female protagonist in order to ensure that the men get a large piece of the cake as well.
Naam Shabana is produced by Pandey and is slated to release on 31 March.