Posts Tagged ‘ Ajay Devgn ’

Satyagraha

Satyagraha_Poster Satyagraha
Release date: August 30, 2013
Directed by: Prakash Jha
Cast: Amitabh Bachchan, Indraneil Sengupta, Ajay Devgn, Amrita Rao, Kareena Kapoor, Manoj Bajpai, Arjun Rampal, Vipin Sharma, Vinay Apte

Satyagraha, Prakash Jha’s take on corruption and its deep roots in our administration, has a lot to offer. Star power, acting prowess and a country background to evoke sympathy for a topic that is consistently in the headlines are the things already working in its favor.

Manav Raghavendra (Ajay Devgn) is an ambitious youngster with a capitalistic mindset, who is ironically best friends with a socially benevolent bureaucrat in the making Akhilesh Anand (Indraneil Sengupta) whose father is an upright system-bashing retired school teacher Dwarka Anand (Amitabh Bachchan) Quoting cliches and going out on a limb against Manav’s existence, Dwarka drives him out of their home and poor Manav can’t even attend Akhilesh and Sumitra’s (Amrita Rao) wedding. Flash forward a few years down the line and both Akhilesh and Manav are in their desired positions.

Tragedy soon strikes and the Anand family faces the ignominy of paying up bribes for their deserved rights and payments. This is where the premise of an impending revolution is laid, as the promises made by the partisan leader Balram Singh (Manoj Bajpai) turn out to be void. In the absence of a second-in-command for the awakening, a small time baahubali Arjun (Arjun Rampal) and the returning tycoon Manav offer support. Incorporating the Satyendra Dubey case and the inception and the eventual falling out of the Jan Lokpal committee,

Satyagraha has less to offer on the shock factor, but the focus at how the decisions and the internal conflicts of the members of the committee develops an interesting story. The individual characters’ dilemmas show how possibly the actual Jan Lokpal could have possibly disintegrated. As much as all other of Jha’s recent films are laced with an antagonist with an underlying dumb sense of humor, Balram and his lackeys possess the same traits.

The screenplay is testing at times, the drama starts gripping you around the halfway mark. The best part about Satyagraha though is that all the characters have shades of gray, they commit mistakes and they realize (of course it’s the good guys I’m talking about) there is character growth and a graph which is clearly visible. And as for the actors, they put in great effort to play their parts right. But there’s a certain level of phony air surrounding the film which simply doesn’t let go till the end. Like Bachchan is emaciated right until the climax, but suddenly cuts a different figure at the end. The sound quality of the dialogue is suddenly very low. The extras appear clueless.

Consequently, Satyagraha is a good drama with some usual staple typecasting and unimaginative lines. Not the best film about the concerned topic, surely competitive.

My rating: **1/2 (2.5 out of 5)

Himmatwala

Himmatwala-movie-poster
Himmatwala
Release date: March 29, 2013
Directed by: Sajid Khan
Cast: Ajay Devgn, Tamannaah Bhatia, Paresh Rawal, Mahesh Manjrekar, Adhyayan Suman, Zarina Wahab, Leena Jumani

By not choosing to waste precious bandwidth, I’ll keep this very short and scathing. Himmatwala, as Sajid Khan claims is supposed to be an ‘entertainer’ more than a film. Heck, Heck, it’s not even as captivating as a cat running after a laser light.

The ghastly duo of Sajid-Farhad are entrusted with providing a “screenplay” and the dialogues and trust them to come up with puerile jokes that are possibly cracked by kindergarten kids. The usual quick-paced delivery of those lines causes you to stay in amazement of how repetitive, unoriginal and uninventive can anyone working at this level be.

One piece of such genius is manifested by this, “Naarayan Das, jitni tum ne saansein li hain, isne (pointing at a killer) us se zyaada jaanein li hain.” Whoa! As unrealistic as what Sajid Khan’s definition of entertainment is. Tamannaah is blessed with unintentionally hilarious catchphrase, “I hate gareebs.” and that pretty much sums up her character’s gist.

Also, all actors were particularly asked to ham it up, cos that’s entertainment! Khan also vociferously negates his claim of creating “Family entertainers” with his regular homoerotic shtick featuring Paresh Rawal and Mahesh Manjrekar. He tries the spoof approach towards the original Himmatwala by constantly making the actors break the fourth wall, “surprisingly” choosing Paresh Rawal –  who handled the job in Mr. and Mrs. Khiladi, to interact with the audience for a major part.

The only small changes Khan makes in this remake are insignificant, but a special one is where Devgn is a “street fighter”, whereas Jeetendra was an engineer in the original. Quite progressive! Not to mention the cheap and immature ‘CG’ where the tiger’s fight sequences look like this:

If you’re going to stare at Tamannaah and/or the five-dance-girls-in-one-item-song novelty, you’ll kick yourself in the nuts and/or ovaries. The entire “entertainer” is irrelevant, boring and outlandishly demeaning to the viewer’s hard-earned hundred and fifty bucks.

My rating:  1/2 (.5 out of 5 stars)

Bol Bachchan

Bol Bachchan
Release Date: July 6, 2012
Directed by: Rohit Shetty
Cast: Ajay Devgn, Abhishek Bachchan, Asin, Prachi Desai, Asrani, Krushna Abhishek, Archana Puran Singh, Neeraj Vora

I knew this film was a take on Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s Gol Maal. But I went in to discover what’s new or rather what’s screwed up. Gol Maal has been used and the derivative plot has been inherited from another film, Chor Machaye Shor, which was also a take on the aforementioned classic.

Ajay Devgn is getting into the skin of a hamming hamster with his each ‘home production’ and he gets into the non-emotive, muscle flexing character, Prithviirrelevantlongname pehelwaan with an age-old rivalry with his cousin, another ridiculouslylongnamed guy. Did I mention there’s a guy uncannily similar to Sabu – Chacha Choudhary’s accomplice – and coincidentally he’s also named ‘Sabu’. How creatively liberating! A tale of lies is spun by Abbas (Abhishek Bachchan) to raise a livelihood. Trust me, you won’t even sympathize with any of the characters even after a ‘financial calamity’ strikes Abbas and his sister, Sania (Asin)

Prachi Desai gets to play the filler, smile-flashing, stupid lovestruck Radhika. There’s no reason why she gets involved in a romantic angle with Bachchan and you are not even expected to question it, or else, Rohit Shetty might topple a Mahindra Scorpio on you. Or he could put you into a Mahindra Scorpio and make it go through a truck and then make you topple.

P.S. Mahindra Scorpio has in no way offered me any kind of endorsement deal, as of yet. Though I’m not sure about Rohit Shetty.

The self-proclaimed  modern day messiah of ‘family entertainment’ laces the narrative with double entendres, mild expletives and inappropriate hand gestures, and the families applaud! Yet, the protagonists shy out of saying the word ‘homosexual’ or samlaingik and prefer to whisper it into ears, with the melodiously irritating loud background noise. Not just once, but twice, or maybe thrice.

You are expected to laugh at a used and shamelessly copied plot, and even plagiarized characterizations. One particular sequence where Rohit Shetty plays out his another fetish, the urge to watch big, burly men making homosexual poses with Abhishek Bachchan, while old and new hit Hindi numbers play in the background. The humor is as forced as the romantic angles or the car-chasing scenes or the entire movie itself. Ajay Devgn’s schtick, where he makes use of wrong English words to concoct a ‘funny’ phrase is as old as Anil Kapoor’s Bhaiyya ji in Tashan. Yes, I just mentioned Tashan.

The ladies don’t have much to do, except for Archana Puran Singh’s loud Zohra Bai and Asin’s disturbingly differentiating breast size. The men either do their parts badly, or they go overboard. There’s no middle ground perhaps. Abhishek Bachchan, Ajay Devgn, Krushna Abhishek and Neeraj Vora even commit the blasphemy of hamming up scenes from the underplayed & subtle Gol Maal.

This isn’t a tribute, it’s a murder of the original Gol Maal and Chor Machaye Shor. If you’re going in for the senior Bachchan, then you’ll get a reason to walk out right at the start when Amitabh Bachchan burps out that he isn’t in the film and only his name is used. Now only if he could have told us that in the TV promos as well.

My rating: * (1 out of 5)

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