Meet mountaineer Shivaay (Ajay Devgn), a man with nothing to lose and nothing to fear. He is one with his beloved Himalayas and apparently has some kind of magical powers that makes him able to jump and swing from mountaintops all the way down to the bottom without getting even a scratch on his body. All that is dear to him in life are those mountains. That, and his pipe. This is until all is turned around and he ends up with something that becomes more dear to him than anything: family. And that is just the thing some bad guys decide to take away from him. Big mistake.
Shivaay stars Ajay Devgn, who also directed the film. It is his second motion picture as a director and he has made it into quite the spectacle. Where the first hour of the film mostly focusses on setting up the story and the characters, the second half of the film explodes into a series of action scenes that are impressively constructed and well executed. The action is very energetic, and Devgn has succeeded in bringing his audience some great thrills as he dives into high speed chases, brawls and stunts.
Devgn is no stranger to the action genre as he has starred in quite a few action-filled films before. Also his father Veeru Devgan has been an action-choregrapher in the film industry for many decades, undoubtedly showing Ajay how it’s done. Shivaay‘s action sequences clearly show us this influence as the scenes are powerful and exciting with some impressive stunt work. Story-wise we have all seen it before; man with nothing to lose gains something to lose, and loses it, driving him over the edge. And it is exactly when he goes over this edge that the film lightens up and the laws of physics are thrown out of the window.
The film was shot mostly on location in Bulgaria. Knowing nothing about the film when sitting down to watch it, I was under the impression that it would mostly take place in the Indian Himalayas. But this is not the case as it is in Bulgaria’s capital city of Sofia where a big chunk of the film unfolds. Devgn keeps the pace up, especially after arriving in the Eastern European country. The film’s climax could have easily been 10 minutes shorter, and some characters could have gotten a bit more fleshed out (cardboard bad guys anyone?) but as a whole the film flows pretty well towards its credits.
Devgn has delivered quite the adrenaline rush, with lively action and colourful backdrops. The film manages to keep the excitement going even though we all know what’s going to happen every step of the way. This doesn’t limit the picture in any of its fun, though.
In an action film nothing is more pleasing to watch than a man who goes on a rampage to get back what the baddies took from him. And this is where Devgn surely delivers.