He is someone who hasn’t got up on his feet ever since he was hit by five bullets on the nature field. He has been on a wheel chair ever since. A few years gone by. He wakes up one (not so) fine day. To his horror, the wheel chair is missing. Instead, there is a pair of crutches around. He needs to lift himself to each the crutches. Even difficult is to pull his own body weight against the gravity and stand up. He tries that. Fails. Tries again. Struggles to get a grip. Grunts. Moans. Tries again. The struggle continues. He doesn’t give up. Eventually he manages.
That’s Amit Sadh in Jeet Ki Zid, who holds this one take single shot long drawn scene, while being totally oblivious to director Vishal Mangalorkar pulling this one through rather effectively without any hinderance whatsoever. This scene, arriving at a crucial juncture of this 7 episode web series from the team of Boney Kapoor, Akash Chawla and Arunava Joy Sengupta pretty much defines the core of this engaging outing that is currently streaming at ZEE5.
What you get to see is actually more than what you would have expected in the first place. Yes, this one was meant to be about the grit and determination of real life hero Major Deependra Singh Sengar who was wounded badly in the Kargil war with Pakistan. Just when it seemed that he could well be relegated to a wheel chair for the rest of his life, he undertook a long journey that not just saw him rise all over again but also finish his MBA study and rise up the corporate ladder.
However, it isn’t just the start and the finish of the story that holds you as a viewer, it’s the intermittent portions where there are several training and mission sequences blended in which makes for a riveting viewing. To give credit where it is due, Jeet Ki Zid pretty much boasts of some of the most long drawn detailed sequences that have hitherto been seen in Indian cinema. Here, the web series makes it possible where a lot is said through action and silences, and the soldiers just need to nod their head in approval or give a thumbs up before facing the line of fire.
Moreover, there is a certain respect factor that definitely comes in for the manner in which Special Forces officers are trained for the worst. This is where you also end up exclaiming ‘hats off’ to Amit Sadh for practically giving his body and soul for the character. He lifts a man his size for a long mile walk. He crawls on the rocks with no padding whatsoever. He goes underwater to hold his breath beyond the endurance limit, and he does everything that is required for him to not just beef up his body but then to turn lean and feeble when forced to be on a wheel chair. It’s this character graph that really holds attention.
What also holds attention is the manner in which Sushant Singh Rajput comes up with yet another very good act after A Simple Murder. If there he was happy bringing on the chuckles, here he is the senior officer who doesn’t play by the rules and kicks, punches and spits on his trainee officers to make them harder and stronger. The command that he has on his body language and dialogue delivery is to be seen to be believed.
Generally with a theme like this one doesn’t expect an actress to have a notable part to play but it’s a well written role for Amrita Puri who steps in as a supporting wife in Jeet Ki Zid where she loves the central protagonist, motivates him and also gets frustrated when her marital life goes for a toss. She gets the expressions right and is believable as well. A good act.
While there are many supporting actors out there, the one who holds the scene is Ali Goni. Though he is quite loveable as Amit’s friend, such is his look as well as the chemistry that he shares with the actor that he actually comes across as a real life elder brother. He is endearing indeed.
That said, one can see a stark difference between what’s shot outdoors in the scenic beauties and the rugged terrains versus the scenes that have a indoor setting of the various households. The scale and canvas is there in the former though things do take a restricted course once the action moves inside. This could have been thought through better. Also, every episode has the real life Major and his wife share an anecdote or two along with the end credits rolling. Though the idea is noble, it breaks the flow of the narrative. Had there been a separate bonus episode with these clips put together in one go and the reel life heroics forming the core part of the episodes, the hold would have been much better.
What makes the show entertaining though are several moments that hold your attention with quite a few sequences that immerse you into the proceedings. While Jeet Ki Zid is about the ‘zid’ that’s on display, it’s the cinematic quality of the several heart stopping mission and training sequences demonstrating varied kind of surgical strikes that make it all worthy indeed.