IB71 Movie Review: Vidyut Jammwal’s Spy Thriller is an Unwitting Parody

Rahul Desai

Caricatured Enemies

If Pakistan is the enemy in an Indian spy thriller these days, you can be sure of a few base themes. One, every Pakistani behaves like a live-action Looney Tunes character. Two, their Urdu is a parody of Urdu. Three, they always need to be taught a lesson.

"Based on True Events"

IB71 is presented as “an untold story based on true events”.Vidyut Jammwal stars as Dev Jammwal, a muscular and intelligent Intelligence Bureau (IB) agent who comes up with a plan to stop Pakistan from attacking India before the 1971 war.

Inspired by Argo

If it isn’t evident yet, IB71 is very much inspired by Ben Affleck’s Oscar-winning Argo (2012). The template is the same: Declassified mission, ridiculous plan, heroic extraction agent, pensive boss hovering over the phone at the bureau, last-ditch escape, egg on Islamic nation’s faces.

Unsatisfying Climax

When the Indians are on the verge of being exposed, a late-night power cut comes to the rescue. At the end of the mission, we see Dev striding triumphantly in slow-motion in the pouring rain towards the border. The film concludes with an epilogue about Pakistan losing the war and failing to break India into parts.