Thugs of Hindostan (2018)

Director of Dhoom 3, Vijay Krishna Acharya thought he could pull off another bad film on Aamir’s shoulders. This time round he had Amitabh Bachchan as well, but even after the big budget and supporting cast, he made a sub-standard film with no pace or thrill.

What worked for me is having no expectations, thinking I will hate it. What surprised me is that the film wasn’t that terrible, but definitely belongs in the bad category. Some jokes and scenes aside, and the excellent special effects, it was a predictable film, with not one or two, but three long scenes where I felt the film will end, but on it went.

Katrina has a few lines, and very odd outfits for the year 1795. Fatima Sana Shaikh has a few more lines and scenes. The action looks artificial, and the story is a rip off of Pirates of the Carribean, as are the characters and slapstick approach. The issue here is the backdrop of slavery and imperial rule which make it a serious affair, don’t work with the forced comedy.

Aamir is decent in a role which doesn’t demand much, and Amitabh, the man is faultless as an actor.

Should you watch it? No… the treatment is worse than formulaic, it’s stereotypical 90s where main leads dance in front of the villain.

Save money. He directed Tashan too. This makes 3 bad films. Wake up Yash Raj Films and Aditya Chopra.

1.5/5

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Jagga Jasoos (2017)

Jagga Jasoos: Anurag Basu’s Barfi was a stellar film. After a 5 year wait, we get to see his much delayed project Jagga Jasoos.

The film has a fresh creative approach, a musical with a reason for being so. The only question is, does it work? The plot is fantasy, with a bit of suspense and history weaved into it. Again, will it hold the attention of the adult audience?

Jagga is played endearingly by Ranbir, who gives us an act which is not uncommon. He looks young, as the role demands it, and the chemistry between him and Katrina is evidently missing. Katrina, on the other hand, feels out of place and sync in the film. She has a few cute moments, but is seemingly not at ease.

I feel the film was marketed incorrectly. At times I felt like I was watching a teletubby episode. It works very well as a children’s film, in which case it wouldn’t require the talents of established stars. Maybe a launch pad for new actors would have brought the budget down and probably finished it quicker.

All in all, the film moves very fast, with the pair getting in and out of sticky situations in a blink. The plot can’t make up its mind, so let’s not look for logic here, just an easy breezy light hearted fare with a musical overload.

2/5

Bang Bang (2014)

Much awaited Hrithik and Katrina starrer. And yes, Katrina does star in this film, unlike Dhoom 3, where she had a blink and miss role. Sorry a lot of Dhoom 3 references are going to come up in this review, for I felt cheated by both.

So they say you must leave your brain aside for some films. I didn’t think this would be one of them. Especially when they credit the source, Knight and Day, in the opening titles. But when they try to pass off the desert of Abu Dhabi as London in broad day light, you realise you have to hold your brain with your pop corn, in your lap.

Thankfully the movie doesn’t take itself seriously, like Dhoom 3 did, where you actually felt like shooting everyone on screen. Here things happen, because its convenient and of course the cinema goer doesn’t have intelligence, “so we can do anything”, thought the makers. What surprises me is that big stars are now doing such films, and audiences are consuming it.

Hrithik does what he does best – dance. His body is chiselled and bronzed to the point of looking unattractive, and doesn’t match his back story at all. Katrina, yo-yoing from size 8 to 16, has a few funny bits, but overall has character issues. She can’t make up what side of herself she is on. Action sequences are well shot, as are the various locales. But did the film warrant its 140-160 (figures differ) budget? Not at all. Caricature support cast move along the ‘fantasy’ plot, sorry not worth mentioning, except the cute grandma.

Director Siddharth Anand (maker of Salaam Namaste, Ta Ra Rum Pum, Bachna Ae Haseeno, Anjaana Anjaani) has delivered what may appear to be a ‘crore-crazy’ film, but it lacks severely in content.

Sad to say, but Hrithik has pulled an Aamir.

1.5/5

Dhoom 3 (2013)

Sorry this review is late, it’s the last one of the year and I could have saved a lot of people time and money, but I guess some divine force was protecting me, until yesterday.

Aamir Khan mentioned he did this film because he liked the script. I would like to see ‘said script’ and ask him squarely, “Why did you do this film?” Frankly I am shocked that he agreed to do it. I guess screen time was the carrot they dangled in front of him. Batman himself would be envious of the motorbike that Aamir has, and his set up would rival that of Iron Man.

The film was flat from the beginning. Basic story telling had taken a back seat. Where was the complication? The motive was so weak. There were fundamental, gaping holes in the screen play, logic was not meant to take a back seat here, but it did. The heist and everything about it lacked reality.

Touching the 300 crore mark as I write this, it makes you wonder why such films do well and other really good ones don’t. The film was well shot, the choreography and spectacle scenes were great to watch. But you don’t take anything home with you, except the feeling that you have been cheated. Aamir is expected to perform well, but here it seemed like a clear recipe for spinning money, which worked. The action scenes are laughable though the effects are decent, it leaves a lot to be desired.

Aamir has done better and more varied work in the past, this time round it was average. Abhishek and Uday are mere props. Katrina has 3 songs and 3 scenes I think, great dancer, that’s it. She also had a hell of a time at ‘the wake’. A joke you will get if you sit right till the end. In which case you also have my condolences.

2/5