An intriguing statement on power, money, people and their lives, first-time director Dakxin Chhara's SAMEER starring Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub in lead plays it safe and doesn't takes any sides like BLACK FRIDAY, FIRAAQ or PERZANIA did.
The use of the protagonist as a mole in an explosive situation that takes over the political colour from this surprise, small budget thriller that engrosses the viewers and keeps them hooked.
An engineering student in Hyderabad Sameer (Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub) is nabbed by ATS team led by Dy. Chief Desai (Subrat Dutta) for being a room partner of a mastermind by the name Yasin Darji allegedly the mastermind of recent bomb blast in the city.
Sameer is transported to Ahmedabad to work as an undercover and get the whereabouts of the elusive Yasin whose mother Mumtaz Khala (Seema Biswas) makes her living delivering Tiffin boxes while Yasin's brother Shaheed (Chinmay Mandlekar) runs the network posing as the owner of a bakery. How Sameer enters the network and how things take snaky turns which are sometimes predictable and sometimes surprising finds the crux of this decent thriller. A top reporter Anjali Patil (Alia Irade), a politician Bahubali Mehta (Manoj Shah) a street drama company wala Manto (Alok Gagdeka) and a metaphor of innocence in Master Shubham Bajrange as rocket are also added to give it extra layers which episodically works.
Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub steals the audience attention with his probing eyes and his character gets an instant connect, its fast-paced and laced with turns that keep the audience hooked. The supporting cast delivers- Anjali Patil, Bahubali Mehta, Alok Gagdeka and Master Shubham Bajrange add to the film's colour which gets its rare occasional satire. Seema Biswas and Chinmay Mandlekar deserve special mention.
Director Dakxin Chhara does as ordered by the manual written in a school book thriller and doesn't care to take sides in this plot that has political overtones. This robs the director of the distinct separate identity. The convincing character of Sameer in the end finds itself in danger due to the directors eagerness to show smartness like an offer to the journalist, the 'planned' move and such diversions in lines like 'is shahad ki toh baat hi kuch or hai' plus the 'economy' philosophy that might go over the head of the viewer who was till now watching a tight edgy thriller.
In the technical department, the movie scores in its rustic camerawork by Gargey Trivedi and sound editing by Aashish Mayur Shah.
Despite having its flaws and its overwhelming reluctance to take any sides, SAMEER still manages to be a tight, edge of the seat surprise in the end and that's the movie's biggest victory.