Saturday, June 20, 2015


Happy Feet

This is the kind of movie about which it is said, leave your brains at home.  Like the earlier film ABCD-- acronym for any body can dance-- the sequel too has director Remo D’Souza create elaborate dance sequences and try to fit a plot in between.

Only, the last time the choreographer-director made a hit without stars, now he has two—Varun Dhawan and Shraddha Kapoor—plus a bigger budget.  Obviously very little trickled down to the script department. The dancers are terrific though, and their talent makes up for the shortcomings in the writing—heavily inspired by Happy New Year, though supposedly based on a real story of dancers from Nalasopara (a distant Mumbai suburb) who aced a hip hop dance contest in Las Vegas.

In ABCD 2, a group of dancers that calls itself Mumbai Stunners, led by Suresh (Dhawan) and Vinnie (Shraddha Kapoor), participate in a dance competition, where they are accused of copying their routine from a Filipino team. They are thrown out of the contest,shamed on social media and mocked as 'cheaters'

Enter Vishnu Sir (Prabhudheva) and a chance at redemption. Drunken Vishnu, with a hazy past, still has the rubber-body moves. When asked, Who are you? He replies, Should I tell him or show him? And then proceeds to show ‘em.

Vishnu could coach the team for the upcoming World Hip-Hop Championship in Las Vegas, and it takes all of Suresh’s powers of persuasion to get him to agree. There’s no great suspense about whether they win or not.

The classic underdog story could have been kept short and simple, but this is not Step Up; in a Bollywood film, there has to be momma, melodrama, jingoism, flag-waving patriotism, injury, coughing blood and every cliché possible in a needlessly long running time of 155 minutes.

Sushant Pujari, Dharmesh Yelande, Raghav Juyal, Punit Pathak and Lauren Gottlieb are the real dancers here, though Varun Dhawan and Shraddha Kapoor are super earnest—hip hip requiring more coordination and energy than balletic grace.

Similarly, the actors can get by with charm—no great acting muscle required. The film is enjoyable and hits its target audience of youngsters. That is more than what can he said about a lot of films that pass off as hits these days.


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