Alia Bhatt's Raazi - 5 Takeaways From New Spy Thriller

Alia Bhatt's Raazi tells the story of Sehmat, a young Kashmiri woman married off by her father to a Pakistani army in order to spy for India

Alia Bhatt's Raazi - 5 Takeaways From New Spy Thriller

Alia Bhatt plays the role of Sehmat, an Indian spy, in Raazi (courtesy YouTube)

New Delhi: 


  1. Alia Bhatt's new film Raazi released on Friday
  2. Raazi is set during the India-Pakistan war of 1971
  3. Vicky Kaushal co-stars with Alia Bhatt in Raazi
Alia Bhatt's new film Raazi, in which she plays a spy, released today. Directed by Meghna Gulzar, Raazi is set during the India-Pakistan war of 1971 and tells the story of Sehmat, a young Kashmiri woman married off by her father to a Pakistani army in order to spy for India. Vicky Kaushal, who made his name with the film Masaan, and Rajit Kapur co-star. Alia's mother Soni Razdan plays her mother in the film. Here are five things from Raazi that stuck with me after I watched it.

1) An Actor Is An Actor

Back in the days, actors were typecast in a certain kind of roles. Meena Kumari was known as the tragedy queen, Smita Patil was the face of parallel cinema, and then there were those like Parveen Babi who would act only in mainstream films opposite A-list male actors. Times have changed, and the lines between different kinds of cinema have blurred. Alia Bhatt is one such actress who cuts across different genres and performs depending on what the script demands. Her performance in Udta Punjab, where she played a rape survivor, was praised and so was her role in Badrinath Ki Dulhaniya where she was a small town girl with big dreams. Now in her very next release Raazi, Alia gets into something serious. She plays a timid Kashmiri girl who leaves school to obey her father's wish of becoming a spy for India and serving the country. She gets into the skin of her character, and you forget you are watching Alia Bhatt.
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Alia Bhatt in a still from Raazi (courtesy YouTube)

2) Good Books Make Good Films

Chetan Bhagat is one of the bestselling authors in India. 3 Idiots and 2 States have been based on his novels. 3 Idiots turned out to one of the most successful films of all times and 2 States, which starred Alia Bhatt and Arjun Kapoor, was also a super-hit film. Meghna Gulzar's Raazi is based on Harinder Sikka's novel Calling Sehmat. It's a story of young braveheart who played a key role during the 1971 Indo-Pak war. This is a very important story in Indo-Pak war history. Because films have a wider reach, suddenly there is a huge interest in the story of Sehmat Khan, the unsung hero who was an Indian girl who was married to a Pakistani army officer and was told to spy on the country and pass confidential information to India. Meghna's execution and Alia's sincere performance makes this a good watch. Raazi is of course a dramatic version of the book but the director said this story moved her and she wanted to make into a film.
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Alia Bhatt plays a spy-wife in Raazi (courtesy YouTube)

3) We Need More Good Thrillers

India makes the maximum number of films but only a handful of good thrillers. That's the reason audience is glued to Netflix, which offers a variety of thrillers - TV shows and films. Raazi is a good spy thriller. It makes you realize that it's not tough to make one if the makers find a good story. India has a lot of interesting stories - newspapers are full of cases that have a lot of public interest, and many of those can be made into good thrillers. Why would we look east or west if Indian filmmakers offered good home-grown thrillers?
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Alia Bhatt in a poster of Raazi (courtesy Instagram)

4) Reminder Of The Rule Of War

Raazi reminds you about the reality of war. When you are at war, you do what you got to do. Rights and wrongs change depending on whom you are fighting for and against. And to protect your country you just have to do the job. A soldier in uniform has one job - that could mean executing the enemy by firing a bullet through his chest. Unsung heroes fight for the same cause, but their fight is different. He/she could be a spy or an informer; they risk their lives as well, every day and pass key information to the security forces. The army, navy and air force have to depend on these job roles to make plans and be ready to face unexpected attacks. Key information provided by Sehmat Khan prevented INS Vikrant from falling prey to the Ghazi Attacks. Indian security forces had no idea about it till this young 20-year-old passed on this valuable information to India.
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Raazi reminds you about the reality of war (courtesy YouTube)

5) You Don't Have To Leave Your Brains At Home To Enjoy A Film

You are often told to leave your brains at home while going to the cinemas to watch a Bollywood film; I don't even know what that means. But what I do know is that many of us like to watch good stories and support good cinema. Often we complain about lack of good choices when it comes to Hindi films. Week after week films release but many are not worth your time and money. Raazi sure is! The great news is that you have to go to the cinemas with your brains to enjoy this film. While you are watching a young girl's story, you are very much involved in it. You want her to succeed in her mission. After the film when you walk out of the movie hall, the story stays with you and you think of the unsung heroes and why they do what they do. If a movie makes you think of them for a while, then that's a big job done.

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