Updated: Jan 21 2007, 05:33am hrs
Starring Vinod Khanna, Randeep Hooda, Yashpal Sharma, Seema Biswas

Directed by Vishram Sawant

Yet another cop-at-the-end-of-his-tether drama Well, thats what Vishram Sawant's testosterone-laden second film, Risk, is by the looks of it. But there is just a little more depth to it than that. Its taut, stylish and evenly paced and helped along by a couple of controlled performances from lead actor Randeep Hooda, playing a cool-as-ice encounter specialist, and veteran Vinod Khanna, back under the arclights after a longish hiatus in the garb of a mafia don who controls the Mumbai underworld from his den in Bangkok.

Barring an gratuitous item number featuring Tanushree Datta in a blink-and-you-miss-it role, Risk eschews extraneous elements and makes its point with a fair degree of cogency. If it doesnt end up saying anything that Bollywood hasnt already told us about the plight of upright policemen who dare to take on the system, its clearly because the writer-director lets the visceral overshadow the ethical questions surrounding the protagonists actions. Cliches fly faster than the bullets - that doesnt help either.

Moreover, the plot throws up the usual suspects a police chief in cahoots with the ganglords, a home minister who is a law unto himself and an ambitious lady politician who plays ball with the underworld and the dons foul-tempered, trigger-happy younger brother. The body count is expectedly high and the violence tends to be disturbingly graphic, but the crisp editing keeps the film from veering out of control. Watchable, if not particularly startling.