Sunday, October 05, 2014

Bang Bang 

None For The Buck

It’s a pity that we have come to associate mainstream cinema with mindless entertainment, but if the mindlessness does not entertain enough, then what is it worth?

The official remake of Hollywood actioner Knight And Day ticks all the right boxes—A-list stars, a humongous budget, and spiffy action sequences, that fail to thrill in spite of the expense and expertise involved, and Hrithik Roshan getting seriously injured doing some stunts.

Commercial Hindi cinema wants desperately to emulate Hollywood and try to outdo it, but is also too scared to drop the tried and tested Bollywood elements—songs and dances, ‘dialoguebaazi,’ personal vendatta and Ma-Babuji-Bhaiya-Dadi.  So what should have been a brisk, tongue-in-cheek save the world flick, becomes a plod.

A terrorist, Omar (Danny Denzongpa) is sprung from a high security prison in London, rather easily, but wants to scuttle an extradition treaty with India, so in future none of his gang can be sent to face trial. For this he orders the Kohinoor diamond stolen. Presumably the Brits would be so enraged that they would keep Indian prisoners for themselves. Yes, it’s that dumb!

The diamond is stolen by Rajveer (Hrithik Roshan), an “international thief” and while he is fighting off cops (Pawan Malhotra, mainly) and hoods, he makes time for a blind date with Harleen (Katrina Kaif) in Shimla. This girl, believe it or not, is single, works as a bank receptionist (really?) and lives a boring life with her granny.

Since Harleen is spotted with him, he is responsible for her safety and as she keeps getting into ‘distress’ situations, he has to keep zooming in to rescue her. Then he decides, he might as well lug her around as extra baggage, even if that means drugging and transporting her from one exotic destination to another, where their lack of passports and visas is never a problem, and they always have time to shop for the right outfits for the right occasion, from bikini to evening dress.

Hrithik Roshan cannot do silliness the way Salman Khan does, and can’t fake intelligence like Aamir Khan does, so all he has to show are some mean dance moves and a chiseled body that makes the heroine gasp in admiration.  At least there is some role reversal here—the man is the eye candy and the woman the gawker. Katrina Kaif is comfortable since she doesn’t have to act much, but has to shriek “Rajveeeeer” a lot. Bang Bang could have been much more fun, too bad it chose to be as bland as a travel brochure.


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