Baby is Neeraj Pandey’s third film, and the writer-director lives up to his reputation, film critic Aniruddha Guha says in his Dedh Minute Review.
Baby is essentially Argo-meets-DDay. It starts off with a voiceover by Danny Denzongpa, where he gives context to the film’s title, named after a group of undercover spies. For a large part of the film, however, we see Akshay Kumar single-handedly foiling terrorist plots in well-executed action set-pieces.
Akshay does a great job as the main lead, like he did in Pandey’s Special Chhabbis. Pandey writes some witty one-liners for his star, who delivers them with a deadpan expression to great effect. Akshay underplays the role, coming across as heroic without much effort, and the director deserves credit for that.
One consistent feature of all Pandey films is that he seems to put in hard work into his scripts, which makes the execution look simpler. Baby is his most ambitious film in scale and content, and its strong screenplay is what sets it apart from many other big-budget potboilers.
He puts together a great cast, with Danny, Kay Kay Menon, Rasheed Naz and Anupam Kher doing a good job. Murali Sharma and Sushant Singh impress in small roles.
A problem with Baby is that the first hour acts purely as a set-up, which wouldn’t have been a issue if it wasn’t a 2 hours and 40 minutes-long film. Post-interval, it’s like watching a 100 minute thriller, which could have been a movie by itself.
Baby is a rare mix of funny and thrilling, and it’s the kind of Akshay Kumar film you would want to see more often. I’m going with 3.5 out of 5.