STRIKER, a crime fiction tale about carom player (Siddarth) pitches out hot-blooded gripping anecdote, fictionalized in the underbelly of Mumbai city. For its low profile, bleak face value and zilch promotions, it will be difficult to expect anything that can be termed as musically astounding from it. Against all odds, it lauds out with as many as six different composers.
In its packaging of eight original soundtracks, there is listing of composers like Shailendra Barve, Amit Trivedi, Yuvan Shankar Raja, Swanand Kirkire, Vishal Bhardwaj and Blaaze, delivering out the needful. Can the assortment of these potential musicians be able to pile up a reasonable score for the flick? Will this STRIKER be able to hit bull's eye…let's strike this out!
Shailendra Barve's prolific prowess over instrumentals makes surprisingly melodic start with somber ''Sufism'' with vocal delights of Sonu Nigam's enriching voice in ''Cham Cham''. The divine enlightening feel in textures of ''Sufism'' is analogous to Mithoon's ''Maula Mera Maula'' (ANWAR) but the tempo is rather decelerated with prolonged duration that carries slow pitched traditionally classical arrangements with vocals in tandem. Jeetendra Joshi's invigorating wordings about love and divinity brings out contours of subtlety in ''lovey-dovey'' moments. Presumably a background score exhibiting love-chemistry, this subtle-paced ''qawwali'' is another fine exhibit of Sonu's expertise on varying tones with ''classy'' feel attached to it. Barve's aesthetics plays to the galleries well with the flavor of the season (Sufism), getting embroiled well with the decorous romantic sentiments.
Lead actor Siddharth take over the mike for tuneful talking about the aspiring escapades in hustling-bustling city of Mumbai in ''Bombay Bombay''. Composed to be narrative background score, this Amit Trivedi's composition boasts of simplistic electronic arrangements with modest Prashant Ingole's wordings to support. It's a visual feel type of experimental number where music is just a ground support to jester out the sentiments.
Yuvan Shankar Raj, a renowned identity in South, comes with his characteristic Tamilian tuneful setting in emoting out situational average score ''Haq Se''. Yuvan along with Siddharth sings out with his peculiar baritones about the dreams and aspirations of the lead protagonist. It's an off beat composition and reminds of a couple of RGV's least heard tracks with minimal impact. Once again, it works more on experimental mode with an off beat melodic works that adds to the gripping moments of the flick.
Surprisingly, so as to speak, this time its lyricist Swanand Kirkire to take over baton of composer with all together feel of racy contemporary Sufi ''qawwali'' in ''Maula''. Kirkire showcases his vocal strength with setting of customary sounding ''qawwali'' feel-good impact. Like all previous tracks, it sounds of an effectual background score with hardly anything sparkling to discuss.
Ankur Vikal is a revelation. Playing a buddy with a heart of gold, but whose idea of gathering wealth is distorted, he puts life into the character. You want to love him as well as hate him. A perfect 10 where character execution, dialogue and diction is concerned. As for Aditya Pancholi, the man delivers a mature performance as the dreaded Jaleel.
Siddharth as Surya fits into the common man mould but at times tries hard to be the part unlike Ankur and Aditya.
If only for its off-beat treatment and detailing, of childhood buddies and dreams, and subtle romance, this movie is worth a watch. There's no gloss, but lots of substance.
Rating – 2.5/5