Brahmastra Hindi Movie
Brahmastra: Part One - Shiva works as more of a children's film rather than a full-fledged origin story. The film tells the tale of a youngster named Shiva (Ranbir Kapoor) who is associated with the mysterious world of Astras or mythical weapons. The most potent of all the weapons is the Brahmastra, as it can destroy the whole universe.
The people with the pieces of the Brahmastra have special powers. For instance, the Vanarastra allows the person who holds it to jump and leap beyond a piece of architecture like a monkey.
The evil forces in search of the pieces of the Brahmastra come to the good guys who have those parts. There is an Ashram with people who have similar special powers and a Guru who teaches them those powers. All the good guys, including those in the Ashram, must come together to stop the evil forces from taking possession of the pieces of the Brahmastra. This is similar to how the superheroes must convene to stop Thanos from getting the Infinity Stones in the Avengers films. Only, here, the good guys try to stop the evil forces from getting the Brahmastra, meaning there is more than one villain in the movie.
The plot about the evil forces wanting to get the pieces of the weapon is also similar to Shang-Chi and The Legend of The Ten Rings. Even the action reminds you of films like Shang-Chi and Doctor Strange. That said, it is worth noting that director Ayan Mukerji and team started making Brahmastra a couple of years ago, so they might not have known the Shang-Chi story.
To give credits where due, there is great spectacle in the film. A pre-interval stretch that involves a great deal of fireworks, works mainly because of the grandeur. The same goes for the extended climax.
The acting may not be great, but one wonders how much scope a film like this has for the actors. Ranbir Kapoor and Alia Bhatt make a lovely pair, but their romantic track does not quite work here. In the first half, the romantic track only acts as a speed bump. Ranbir also acts here a bit like in Ayan Mukerji's own Wake Up Zid. This means he is not in the same epic mode as Amitabh Bachchan or Mouni Roy. This does not matter much because the writing is so cheesy.
From the viewpoint of a drama, the film only has a couple of interesting ideas, like the Astraverse and a Shiva-Parvati angle. Even for some of the action sequences, the writing is ludicrous. For instance, how and why do the bad guys find a lorry to chase the good guys on a high range area, given that the action that comes later is more James Bond-esque than anything from the mythology?
Apart from the spectacle, what makes the film mildly enjoyable is the line-up of Pritam songs. I particularly enjoyed tracks like 'Kesariya' and 'Deva Deva'. Not all the songs fit in with the overall narrative, though.
Brahmastra: Part One - Shiva is said to be the first in a series of three films. Given the bumper opening for the film, one wonders how many more of those rings of fire one would have to sit through. Nevertheless, kids and the child at heart will have a good time watching it.