"Special Chabbis" is a heist drama film starring Akshay Kumar, Kajal Aggarwal, Jimmy Shergill, Manoj Bajpai and Anupam Kher in lead roles. The film is based on a realistic lives of a group of con artists and is directed by Neeraj Pandey of "A Wednesday" fame.
Here is what critics have to say about the film:
Gaurav Malani of The Times of India said: "Special Chabbis derives its theme from an infamous episode from the late 80s where a group of conmen posing as CBI officers robbed a jewelry store in Mumbai in broad daylight. Thereafter spin-offs of this incident were used in some films but to slapstick effect. However neither does director Neeraj Pandey intend anything farcical nor is Akshay Kumar in his usual clowning zone.
"Right from the opening raid sequence that introduces the conmen and establishes their modus operandi, the film sets the right tone and gets straight to the point.
"Finally there's a film that lives up to its name and serves you something special!"
Saibal Chatterjee of NDTV said: "One absolutely failsafe way of figuring out the efficacy of a movie is to measure how heavy its runtime weighs on the audience. Special 26 is actually quite a long film - it is a shade under two and a half hours. But it feels much shorter than it really is. It glides by with such effortlessness that it leaves behind no unsightly footmarks. Special 26 is an intelligently scripted, superbly acted, enthralling and believable heist film that is more than just that.
"Special 26 hinges on four pivotal performances, with Manoj Bajpayee's star turn being the standout one. It is a classic demonstration of what a consummate actor can achieve when he is at complete ease with the material at his disposal.
"Verdict: Special 26 truly special. Not be missed."
Taran Adarsh of Bollywood Hungama said: "SPECIAL 26, which borrows from real-life incidents, is a heist drama, has no forced humor, no South-styled stunts, no song-and-dance routine with foreign dancers in the background. SPECIAL 26 is more of a 'treatment' movie, a plot-driven fare. So, there!
"SPECIAL 26 may be a fictionalized account of events that occurred in the 1980s, but Neeraj ensures it does not transform into a dry film/documentary that focuses completely and absolutely on the incidents. The film has the soul of a thriller and the director makes sure that it not only enlightens [to the present-day viewer], but entertains as well.
"On the whole, SPECIAL 26 is an intelligently woven, slick and smart period thriller with its subject matter as its USP. It's sure to get listed as one of the most gripping heist dramas based on real life occurrences. A film that's sure to win accolades, acclaim and awards. Also, box-office rewards!"
Diksha Madhok of Reuters said: "Director Neeraj Pandey's "A Wednesday", a film about an ordinary Mumbai citizen who plots to kill terror masterminds, was a breath of fresh air in 2008. It was imaginative, taut and full of twists and turns. But Pandey's new film "Special 26″, a heist drama, does not quite hit the bull's eye - with an insipid love story and a forgettable "item number" playing spoilsport.
"It does have a good plot to begin with. Inspired from a real-life jewellery heist in 1987, the film is about a gang of con artists who masquerade as law enforcement officers to rob politicians and businessmen of their "black money" or undeclared wealth.
""Special 26″ is not a bad film. It keeps the audience engaged. Sadly, it could have been much better."