Class of ’83 movie cast: Bobby Deol, Joy Sengupta, Vishwajeet Pradhan, Anup Soni, Bhupendra Jadawat, Sameer Paranjape, Ninad Mahajani, Prithvik Pratap, Hitesh Bhojraj, Ravi Singh
Class of ’83 movie director: Atul Sabharwal
This movie, Class of ‘83 goes back to a decade, when Bombay was going through a huge agitation. Cotton mills and their ‘mazdoors’ were being squeezed into dust through a mixture of political unscrupulous activities and powerful real-estate sharks with an evil eye on the vast spaces, in the heart of the city, which accommodated the mills.
There was unauthorized money to be made, through illicit movement of gold, feigned currency, drugs, arms, and property.
The film opens in 1982, when Vijay Singh (Deol) calls up on a punishment posting at Nashik’s police training academy. Feeling a sharp stinging pain from the double blow of a personal tragedy and a professional setback, the hesitant dean’s attention is caught by five ‘back-benchers’, Surve, Jadhav, Shukla, Varde and Aslam, with the prerequisites of smarts, loyalty, and a stroke of freedom
You can find traces of the increasing Punjab terrorism and the AK47s which were making headways to Mumbai; there’s also reference of Datta Samant and the struggle of the millworkers and the unions. Besides, we hear of the ‘Naik and the Kalsekar’ gang, and Dubai progressing as a favourite mob hotspot.
This serves as a background to which the class of ‘83 operates, and the treatment—carefully muted background music, smartly executed action, and unshowy acts—makes it hard to separate fact from fiction.
This strong sense of realism, and of time and place, colours the film and the heavy shootouts on the streets remind you of the 80s Bombay. Deol entry is heroic and is shaky in a few places, but on the whole he manages to pull off his greying lion role.
Joy Sengupta as DGP Raghav Desai whose scenes with Deol make the latter look intense, Vishwajeet Pradhan as an instructor at the academy, and Anup Soni as the politician who knows the tricks of the game, and who really should do movies more often.
Though we have witnessed so many versions of the gangsters vs honest law enforcers in the movies, there’s always room for another. Especially because we need bravery tales cops who believe in their motto of ‘protect the good and destroy the evil’, today more than ever.