Saturday, January 26, 2013

Race 2 

Turns Turkey

If someone were to spoof ‘Director Duo’ Abbas Mustan’s style of filmmaking, they’d probably come up with something like Race 2.

A car is blown up early in the film.  The characters are introduced one by one, and they stride in slow motion showing lots of skin. (Deepika Padukone should be mildly offended at being described as a ”pillar who can be a killer.”) The location is Turkey, where, what-do-you-know, Indians run everything and cops are just never visible even when there are mad chases and explosions happening all over Istanbul.

John Abraham plays the greedy and ruthless Armaan Malik, Deepika Padukone is his half sister (and "full shaani" the dialogue writer helpfully adds) Alina and Jacqueline Fernandez his girlfriend Omisha.  Saif Ali Khan’s Ranvir Singh returns from Race (2008) along with fruit chomping Robert D’Costa (Anil Kapoor). In Race 2 his sidekick is Cherry (Ameesha Patel), and the vulgar dialogue these two are made to speak has to be heard to be believed.

The plot is the usual Abbas Mustan maze of scheming, double crossing, bombastic dialogue maaroing and some steamy stuff, though much less than in Race. Even though the locations are new, the look is gaudy, tackiness drips from the production design trying hard to be stylish, and the way Armaan and Ranvir use million and billion Euros in throwaway lines, it’s hilarious—like kids playing with Monopoly money and pretending they own the world.  Ranvir even pulls off a heist of the most unlikely object – a religious relic—in a sequence so outrageous as to be comic.  In fact the whole film is unintentionally funny, when Abbas Mustan clearly intended it to be thrilling.

The leading men and women have been cast for their bodies rather than their talent, though Saif Ali Khan looks rather beefy. John Abraham gets one unnecessary boxing scene, so that he can flex his muscles. The music is dull and the picturisation even more so.  The Allah Duhai song pops up in the middle just like that, with its old music video style imagery—the kind most films use for end credits and promos.

The Director Duo started sliding downhill with last year’s Players-- time to change the formula before their films start looking like parodies.


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