JUDWAA 2 – Who said remakes cannot be fun

I mean they’re making remakes of my films and I am not even dead yet – Norman Jewison

 

INTRO

 

#TWINDRAGONS, a little known film of Chinese actor #JackieChan released in the year 1992 to a lukewarm response and that would have been the end of the story but for a filmmaker from Tollywood aka Telugu film industry who felt that the story of two identical twins had potential. He was right. The rehash, HELLO BROTHER which starred Telugu matinee idol #Nagarjuna smashed all box office records. Not to be left behind Bollywood came up with it’s own version simply titled JUDWAA. Starring Salman ‘Bhai’ Khan in a rare double role it also raked in the moolah. That was 1997. Now a full two decades later the same makers (producer #SajidNadiadwala & director #DavidDhawan) deem it fit to come up with (yet) another remake – JUDWAA 2.

 

STORY

 

Nothing new here. Two identical twins (Raja & Prem) separated at birth grow up living different lives. So you have Mister suave who has lived abroad all his life and the other is a #Tapori (Mumbaiyya slang for Slumdog) Till one fine day they accidentally end up swapping places and all hell breaks loose.

 

SCRIPT, SCREENPLAY & DIALOGUES

 

Over the last decade brothers and writers #Sajid-Farhad have built a reputation as the go-to men when it comes to penning comedies so much so that makers like Rohit Shetty (the #GOLMAAL franchisee) and Sajid Khan (the #HOUSEFULL franchisee) swear by them. And while watching JUDWAA 2 it is not difficult to see why. Even if you are a Bhai fan and might crib that Varun Dhawan is nowhere in comparison ten minutes into the film you will actually find yourself chuckling. And at slightly less than 150 minutes JUDWAA 2 is a breeze to sit through.

 

TECHNICAL CREDITS

 

That director David Dhawan is an ace editor has always been an added advantage and it is no different with JUDWAA 2. Though the credits do mention Ritesh Soni the stamp of David all over is unmistakable. DOP Ayananka Bose’s pleasing work shows that David has grown as a technician. And like all Nadiadwala productions this one is lavishly mounted. The soundtrack credited to Sajid-Wajid uses a couple of tunes  from the 1997 film which is a good thing. One wishes they had used ‘East or West India is the Best’ which was a personal favorite back then.

 

PERFORMANCES

 

Like it’s predecessor JUDWAA 2 has several comic actors (Anupam Kher, Johnny Lever, Upasana Singh, Rajpal Yadav, Ali Asgar) but none of them really leaves a lasting impact and they are all strictly average. But it is a little disappointing to see the very talented Pawan Malhotra in a role that could have been essayed by any lesser actor. Those who have seen the earlier JUDWAA would know that the heroines had precious little to do and so it is with this one too. All through the film Jacqueline Fernandes seems to not know whether she is coming or going.

The very talented #TaapseePannu who wowed one and all with her bravura act in PINK makes the transition to what is a hardcore commercial film seamlessly. From wearing itsy-bitsy bikinis to full-on jhatka-matkas she does it all unflinchingly (After all the temptation to go through the motions must have been immense) Proving that a good actor is a good actor is a good actor. #VarunDhawan is the star of this enterprise. He knows it and revels in it. Though his father David would like to think that his son is #SalmanKhan & #Govinda rolled into one that is hardly the case. He is even all right in the role of the street smart ‘tapori’ but brings nothing to the other role. Yes he is very comfortable in front of the camera with all the trappings of a star not necessarily a good actor.

 

DIRECTION

 

David Dhawan has been the ‘King of Comedy’ when it comes to directors in apna Bollywood and his association with actor Govinda (they have done a mindboggling 17 films together) is the stuff of legend. Sadly with the actor’s career nosediving in the last decade David has also struggled. Not surprising then that his last big hit, #PARTNER was a decade ago. With his favorite actor, Govinda (who else) Hopefully with JUDWAA 2 this talented director has found his ‘mojo’ again. With son in tow. This is not nearly his best but the (imminent) success of this film might just do the trick.

 

VERDICT

 

#JUDWAA2 is designed to be a full-on timepass film and to that extent it succeeds. This low brow comedy will not appeal to the discerning audience but it never was meant for them anyway. You will smile a lot throughout and occasionally break into a laughter even. Expecting anything more is foolhardy. This one is a sure shot for the 100 crore club.

 

RATING

2.5/5

 

NEWTON – This dance of democracy is mesmerising

The ballot is stronger than the bullet – Abraham Lincoln

INTRO

Politics lends itself well to #Satire and that some of the best black comedies, like Charlie Chaplin’s #TheGreatDictator, Stanley Kubrick’s Dr Strangelove or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb were all rooted in politics is only further proof of the same. In apna Bollywood such films are few and far in between partly because successive regimes have been less tolerant of such films. After all it has been over three decades since that rare gem called JAANE BHI DO YAARON released. But in the last few years films like #AnushaRizvi’s PEEPLI LIVE, Sourabh Srivastava’s OH MY GOD and #SubhashKapoor’s JOLLY LLB have shown that things are changing. In that sense Amit Masurakar’s #NEWTON could not have released at a better time.

STORY

A story is something of a rarity in most Bollywood fillums. But this one actually has one. Newton is the story of this honest (to a fault) guy called Nutan Kumar (Rajkumar Rao) who along with his two colleagues is given the risky assignment of presiding over polls in the Dandakaranya forests. The job is risky because the area is #Naxal dominated. What happens on election day is what NEWTON is all about.

SCRIPT, SCREENPLAY & DIALOGUES

NEWTON is penned by the director himself along with writer Mayank Tewari (the lead actor with dishevelled hair who spouts the ‘Ganja Mangoge Coke Denge, Rishwat Mangoge Thok Denge’ line in Masurkar’s debut slacker film, SULEMANI KEEDA) Tewari is there in this one too but in a blink-and-you-miss role as a scribe. The best part about the writing here is that NEWTON touches upon several issues (democracy, the Naxal problem, woman empowerment, conditions of tribals) all at once but without ever feeling the need to hammer home the point (which was the case with PEEPLI LIVE) At one point during the film, Rajkumar’s character asks a polling booth officer whether she is a NIRASHAVADI (meaning pessimist) To which her terse reply is ‘Main Adivasi Hoon’ That one line sums up NEWTON. And at less than two hours (109 mins) the film has no flab that it needs to shed.

TECHNICAL CREDITS

There are no songs in NEWTON really but for the inspiring ‘Chal Tu Apna Kaam Kar’ that appears towards the end and it really does give one goosebumps. The background score by Benedict Taylor is minimal and is in keeping with the subtle style of narration that the film has. The DOP #SwapnilSonawane seems to have a thing for films that are ‘hatke’ what with his other film being the 2015 feminist fillum ANGRY INDIAN GODDESSES. Though the temptation to use the vast forests of #Dandakaranya as a character in itself must have been immense, in keeping with the ‘less is more’ ethos of NEWTON Sonawane refrains from getting self indulgent. Special mention must be made of Shweta Venkat Mathew (of GANGS OF WASSEYPUR fame) whose crisp editing ensures that NEWTON never slips into docu-feature mode. And one cannot praise enough #DrishyamFilms who have consistently backed quality independent films like AANKHON DEKHI, MASAAN, DHANAK and now NEWTON.

PERFORMANCES

In it’s scope, style and canvas NEWTON bears a slight resemblance to the #AamirKhan production PEEPLI LIVE and Amit Masurkar acknowledges this by casting the lead actor of that film Omkar Das Manikpuri in a minor role (he even has a funny scene where he tries to pitch network marketing to the character of Rajkumar Rao) But it is the other actor from that very film, #RaghuvirYadav who shines in the role of Loknath who has done his masters in Hindi but regrets not having learnt English. The scene where he has to attend to nature’s call in the forests is quite superb. #PankajTripathi follows his superb act in BAREILLY KI BARFI a few weeks ago with the role of CO Aatma Singh here. His role is in ways the anti thesis of everything that Rajkumar’s character stands for. He is manipuplative, shrewd and will circumvent rules just so that he has his way. Sanjay Mishra is so good in a delightful cameo that one actually wishes there was more of him.

#AnjaliPatil who has won praise on the international circuit for some of her previous work sinks her teeth into the role of a school teacher who hails from the local community. Whether it is while acting as the go-between for the villagers and Rajkumar Rao or while admonishing the hero for being unaware of the ground realities she is in ways the moral compass of NEWTON. For some strange reason #RajkumarRao in the role of Newton (a name that he confesses choosing only to avoid ridicule) kept reminding one of what is arguably Hrishida’s finest film SATYAKAM. And more specifically of Dharmendra’s character in the film. Like in that film Rajkumar Rao is an idealist but not without flaws of his own. (What Sanjay Mishra quite interestingly terms ‘Imaandari ka Ghamand’) And it is this very arrogance that almost gets him killed in the tense climax. With this role Rajkumar Rao again reaffirms that he is the best thing to have happened to Hindi cinema in recent years.

DIRECTION

#AmitMasurkar who made his debut four years ago with the part-silly-part-funny SULEMANI KEEDA has upped his craft a few notches with this second film #NEWTON. He deals with a subject as tricky as that of the Naxal problem with rare maturity and never allows the film to become too grim. In fact there are several scenes in NEWTON where one laughed out loud only to become quiet realising how hapless the situation is (for the characters involved) Now that is an emotion that one has rarely experienced at the movies, certainly not in a Hindi film. And just for that one doffs one’s hat off to Masurkar.

VERDICT

2017 has been the year of small films. Films shorn of stars, hype, hoopla and songs. Films that actually boast of memorable characters, great writing and solid acting. NEWTON exemplifies all this and more. One fervently hopes that it reaches it’s target audience. Not really for the sake of the producer or the director but for those wanting to see good cinema come out of Bollywood. And NEWTON is clearly the best film one has seen so far this year.

RATING

4/5

 

Mubarakan – And how Singh is still King

There’s nothing more demonic than two bored twins

– Signed Tamaki

INTRO

Almost all Bollywood films revolving around identical twins take inspiration from two seminal works. Alexander Dumas’s Corsican Brothers and Shakespeare’s Comedy of Errors. Incidentally the Bard himself had twins in real life. And be it #DilipKumar (RAM AUR SHYAM) #DevAnand (HUM DONO) #SanjeevKumar (ANGOOR) #RajeshKhanna (ARADHANA) or #AmitabhBachchan (DON) they have all done these roles. The leading ladies are not too far behind either. From #Nargis (ANHONEE) to #SharmilaTagore (MAUSAM) #HemaMalini (SEETA AUR GEETA) and #Sridevi (CHAALBAAZ) to the recent #KanganaRanaut (TANU WEDS MANU RETURNS) playing two roles is a temptation they clearly cannot resist. Films with mistaken identity as the theme are generally considered a safe bet as long as they are written well. Writer & director #AneesBazmee is another filmmaker to try his hand at this genre with his latest offering, MUBAKARAN. Will it sink or swim?

STORY

Karan & Charan (Arjun Kapoor) are twins who lose their parents at a young age. Their uncle Kartar Singh (#AnilKapoor) decides that one should grow with a sister (#RatnaPathakShah) in London while another grows in sadda Punjab with a brother (#PavanMalhotra) Don’t ask why though. Cut to when they grow old enough to be married. Their uncle messes up things (One has a pagdi and yet confusion reigns. Don’t ask how) by getting the boys engaged to the wrong girl. From which point all hell breaks loose.

SCRIPT, SCREENPLAY & DIALOGUES

Marriage is a recurring theme in all the recent films of Anees Bazmee (NO ENTRY, WELCOME, SINGH IS KING). And #Mubarakan is no exception. And if you have suffered the ignominy of watching his previous films there is actually a set formula to the madness. Though one cannot quite understand why Bazmee who is no lesser writer of slapstick himself(SHOLA AUR SHABNAM, BOL RADHA BOL, AANKHEN, RAJA BABU, DEEWANA MASTANA) has left the writing to others. Having said that relatively unknown Balwinder Singh Janjua who is credited with both the story & screenplay (23 March 1931:SHAHEED,AB TUMHARE HAWALE WATAN SATHIYO ?) and dialogue writer #RajeshChawla (DELHI HEIGHTS, WARNING, SHARAFAT GAYI TEL LENE ??) seem to work well under Bazmee’s tutelage. The scene in which all three Kapoors come together (Sanjay Kapoor as the ghost in a friendly appearance) is inspired writing. And though the film is over two and a half hours long it has enough to keep the masses entertained. There are too many songs (almost all of which are loud, garish and strictly average) and like most films of Bazmee the wheels start to come off by the time the film stumbles it’s way to a botched up climax.

TECHNICAL CREDITS

Like in most slapstick comedies the music of MUBARAKAN by Amaal Malik, Rishi Rich & Gourov-Roshin is passable (but only just) The background score that goes from loud & louder to are you nuts? (Sorry Michael Jackson) can be jarring to begin with but after a while your ears gets adjusted to the noise. The DOP Himman Dhamija (I,ME AUR MAIN, CHANDNI CHOWK TO CHINA, DAWAAT-E-ISHQ ???) does what is expected of him – make every frame as bright & larger than life as possible. Veteran editor Rameshwar Bhagat (SULTAN, BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN, DHOOM 2) does a good job of keeping a tight lid on things, especially in the pre interval portions.

PERFORMANCES

One thing that Bazmee knows is the value of good actors and however inane his films might be the one thing that salvages them and makes these farcical comedies bearable are the actors. MUBARAKAN is no different. Where Ratna Pathak Shah does what is expected of her as the sophisticated caretaker aunt of the London bred Arjun, Pavan Malhotra hams away to glory as the uncle bringing up the Punjabi Arjun. Rahul ‘The Body’ Dev is wasted in a silly special appearance. Of the three heroines #NehaSharma is strictly average. #AthiyaShetty clearly has inherited her father’s acting genes and is as wooden as wood itself. Ileana who has a meatier role is somewhat better.

Arjun Kapoor has already done a dud called AURANGZEB where he played two roles before. Bazmee saves him the blushes here by giving a ‘pagdi’ to one of the twins. Here is a non actor who has neither the acting chops nor the looks that his uncle had and still does. And his weight issues show that he does not have the discipline either. But hey this is Bollywood where blood is thicker than talent. As expected all the heavy lifting in MUBARAKAN is done by the ageless wonder Anil Kapoor. If you have seen him in Bazmee’s previous ventures like NO ENTRY & WELCOME you know exactly what to expect. And that is exactly what you will get in MUBARAKAN. A jhakaaass performance.

DIRECTION

Anees Bazmee has been doing #Slapstick for so long and been making a success of it that one should probably anoint him the ‘Master of the Absurd’ To his credit he knows his audience and sticks to what he is good at. Making life very uncomplicated for himself and those watching his films. And with MUBARAKAN he again scores. The first half itself has enough punches to do the needful. Though he falters in the second half he uses his trump card (read Anil Kapoor) well to keep the viewer hooked.

VERDICT

MUBARAKAN is not for those who like to ask stupid questions about the absence of logic in the film. Nor is it for those who ask smart questions about the stereotyping of a race like the Punjabis. In fact MUBARAKAN is not for those who ask any questions. If you can resist the temptation to do so you might actually find yourself breaking into a smile every now & then. This one is sure to rake in the moolah and knowing Bazmee that can only mean one thing. A sequel.

Toilet: Ek Prem Katha – Bollywood succumbs to political propoganda

Cleanliness is next to Godliness

– M.K.Gandhi

INTRO

For the last couple of years the going has been good for the ‘Khiladi’ Akshay Kumar in Bollywood. His choice of films (AIRLIFT, RUSTOM, JOLLY LLB2, BABY) have found resonance with the masses and the discerning (to a lesser extent) even garnering him his first National award. That it has created it’s own share of controversy is another matter. With his latest venture TOILET: EK PREM KATHA he joins hands with ace editor Sree Narayan Singh on a subject of great importance to our country. #OpenDefecation. Understandably expectations are high. Does the film meet them? Read on.

STORY

36 year old cycle shop owner Keshav (Akshay Kumar) is desperate to settle down (read get married) but his extremely orthodox family headed by the patriarch, Keshav’s father (Sudhir Pandey) and their age old beliefs are a big hindrance. As luck would have it he falls in love with Jaya (Bhoomi Pednekar) a fairly well educated girl from a neighbouring village and woos her in typical Bollywood style. But their joy is short lived for soon Jaya discovers that her husband’s home does not have a toilet. The young bride gives Keshav an ultimatum – Biwi paas chahiye toh ghar me sandaas chahiye and leaves his house. How Keshav brings her back forms the rest of the narrative.

SCRIPT, SCREENPLAY & DIALOGUES

The writer duo of Siddharth Singh & Garima Wahal whose claim to fame is the work that they have done for director Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s hit ventures (GOLIYON KI RAASLEELA RAM-LEELA & BAJIRAO MASTANI) have written this film. Frankly a subject as complex as this required deft handling which is clearly missing. Also that the film unabashedly pays an ode to the beloved #SwachBharatAbhiyaan campaign of our Prime Minister is annoying. Not only is it preachy but seeks to put the onus of tackling this problem on us, the people. There are parts which are actually well done but at over 150 minutes of running time the film seems too long and has too many songs that could have been chopped off.

TECHNICAL CREDITS

The music of #ToiletEkPremKatha is scored by Vickey Prasad, Manas-Shikhar, Sachet-Parampara all newbies and inspite of a couple of them being rendered with great earnestness by singer Sonu Nigam they are far from impressive. At best they are average and that is about it. The DOP Anshuman Mahaley who showed great promise in Jolly LLB, GIPPI is all right here. Shree Narayan Singh who is an ace editor himself gets a tad self indulgent with his directorial debut.

PERFORMANCES

The film is salvaged to a great extent by it’s performances. Veteran actor Sudhir Pandey is excellent as the regressive minded patriarch who is outraged at the very thought of having a toilet in the same vicinity as the #Tulsi plant (that is worshipped by Hindus) Divyendu Sharma who showed some promise in his debut film #PYAARKAPUNCHNAMA is very likeable as Akshay Kumar’s younger brother here. Another person who lives up to the promise of her first film is actress #BhumiPednekar. Having lost loads of weight and looking quite fetching she is very good as a wife who is unafraid to speak the truth.

The role of Keshav is tailor made for actor #AkshayKumar who exudes just the right amount of sincerity that is required to pull it off. His choice of roles (of late) which seem to suffer from a overdose of patriotism makes one fear he might just be reduced to becoming a poster boy of the current government and TOILET: EK PREM KATHA only reinforces this. One only hopes that the Khiladi Kumar does not yield to this and spoil what is clearly the best phase of his acting career.

DIRECTION

Considering that this film is the directorial debut of editor Shree Narayan Singh it is a laudable effort. He has been able to extract good work from his actors and the film does have an important message. What is not laudable but rather worrying is how he has left himself and the film be used as a vehicle to wax eloquent about the present government. There is no attempt to delve deeper into issues like #Casteism in the Hindu community or the shocking practice of #HumanScavenging. Instead a wishy washy solution is provided and the government is absolved of any wrongdoings. Worse the film even sings paeans to #Demonetisation which is hard to digest. And if this film makes big bucks at the box office which seems very likely it might just set an unhealthy trend.

VERDICT

In the end TOILET:EK PREM KATHA is an all right one time watch with enough moments to keep the masses entertained. And it is sure to rake in the moolah. For those expecting a satire or a black comedy (on the lines of a JAANE BHI DO YAARON) this one will disappoint.

JAB HARRY MET SEJAL – This rom-com is a colossal letdown

Travelling – it leaves you speechless,then turns you into a storyteller

– Ibn Battuta

INTRO

Hollywood is replete with #RoadMovies, so much so that it has become a genre in itself. From the cult #Biking film EASY RIDER to the stunning #Biopic THE MOTORCYCLE DIARIES, from the #Dystopian adrenaline fest that was MAD MAX – FURY ROAD to the very #Feminist THELMA & LOUISE and of course the bitter-sweet tale of LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE road movies are aplenty. Not so with our #Bollywood. Though in recent times with films like ZINDAGI NA MILEGI DOBARA, PIKU, NH-10 and FINDING FANNY this is all set to change. Imtiaz Ali whose own road movie HIGHWAY saw the breakthrough performance of actress #AliaBhatt is in familiar territory with JAB HARRY MET SEJAL.

STORY

The central character in the whole film is actually this engagement #Ring which a girl called Sejal (Anushka Sharma) has lost on her trip to Europe with her family. Enter Harinder Singh Nehra aka Harry who gets coerced into joining Sejal in this quest for the ring. Thus begins a long and arduous (for the viewers)journey during which they fall in love (Surprise!Surprise!) with each other.

SCRIPT, SCREENPLAY & DIALOGUES

As a writer #ImtiazAli has oscillated from the sublime (SOCHA NA THA, JAB WE MET, HIGHWAY) to the
ridiculous (LOVE AAJ KAL, ROCKSTAR, TAMASHA) with alarming regularity throughout his career. Sadly JAB HARRY MET SEJAL falls under the latter. In fact for most of the 144 minutes of it’s running time, the writing in the film is strictly pedestrian. The basic premise (of the lost ring) itself is flawed and so are the two lead characters of this enterprise. While Shahrukh’s Harry seems like a caricature of what he has played for the last two decades and more it is Anushka’s Sejal who is a huge letdown given that Ali is known to write strong female characters in his film. And the big reason is her overdone ‘Gujju’ accent that annoys and irritates in equal measure. Surely the director & the actress knew this one was going awry. To make matters worse the situations evoke a strong feeling of #DejaVu. The only saving grace are the songs. But after a point even they seem one too many.

TECHNICAL CREDITS

Imtiaz Ali’s movies always deliver when it comes to the soundtrack, the stunning locales and the
fantastic production values. And JAB HARRY MET SEJAL is no exception. The music by #Pritam is the one silver lining and regardless of how the film does songs like SAFAR will be on your playlist for some time yet. KU Mohanan has captured #Amsterdam (and other parts of Europe) extremely well making each song worth a watch on the big screen. The editing by Aarti Bajaj is all right considering that bad films are not particularly easy to cut, chop and snip.

PERFORMANCES

In the 2011 movie ROCKSTAR the writing by Imtiaz Ali was not great either. But it got saved by a
stunning performance by #RanbirKapoor in the lead role and of course, a rousing soundtrack by maestro A.R.Rehman Here there is no such luck. At least as far as the performances go. While the starlet Evelyn Sharma is forgettable in a minor role, it is actor Chandan Roy Sanyal in a negative role who is terrible in a track that could have been edited out of the film even. Sad to see this very talented actor (who wowed us all in KAMINEY and D-DAY) in such inane roles.

Actress #AnushkaSharma who is good even in bad films (and she has had her fair share of them with
BOMBAY VELVET, MATROO KI BIJLEE KA MANDOLA & JAB TAK HI JAAN) looks like a million bucks. Where someone like Deepika Padukone was able to pull off her Tamilian accent character with aplomb in CHENNAI EXPRESS, Anushka’s interpretation of her Gujarati character falls flat on it’s face. For superstar #ShahrukhKhan this film is a setback he could have done without. Especially when it seemed like he was turning things around with his last three films, FAN, DEAR ZINDAGI and RAEES all indicating a resurgence. JAB HARRY MET SEJAL is sure sign that the audience has had enough of the serenading.

DIRECTION

Imtiaz Ali has always made romantic albeit quirky films and that he writes them too gives him a measure of control over how the final product will turn out. So there is no excuse really for the half baked, under cooked enterprise that JAB HARRY MET SEJAL is. To use cricketing analogy it is like an opening batsman getting out to a lazy shot on a belter of a pitch where runs are there for the taking. After his last film TAMASHA turned out to be debacle one expected Imtiaz Ali to pull up his socks for this one. Clearly that was not to be. Bollywood can be a cruel place for those who squander opportunities and one only hopes that this director realises this. Before it is too late.

VERDICT

JAB HARRY MET SEJAL has no redeeming features that can be prove to be a saving grace at the box office. It is a very ordinary film with average performances and above average music. As both the audiences & critics have unequivocally given the film a thumbs down, it’s failure is inevitable. Avoidable.

Jagga Jasoos – Make no galti se mistake, this one is special

There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact

– Sherlock Holmes

INTRO

The last #Detective film that one saw was Dibakar Banerjee’s #DetectiveByomkeshBakshy! where the
otherwise brilliant filmmaker was constrained by having to stick to a set template and as a result was a colossal letdown. Which is a shame really because there are hardly any notable Hindi films in this genre. Unlike in the west where you have the #SherlockHolmes and the #AgathaChristies who have enthralled us for long. The makers of #JaggaJasoos mentioned in a recent interview that the film was really a #Musical with as many as 29 songs in all. That set the alarm bells ringing. And it is with trepidation that one entered the theatres screening Anurag Basu’s latest offering.

WARNING:SPOILERS AHEAD

STORY

Jagga Jasoos is the story of an orphan (#RanbirKapoor) with a stammering problem who comes across a stranger quite by chance. The stranger who is only known as Tooti-Footi to the kid grows close so much so that they become like father and son. But one day this man goes away just as suddenly as he had appeared. Every year on Jagga’s birthday he sends a videotape to the kid until one day the tape does not come. From there begins Jagga’s incredible journey to find this stranger.

SCRIPT, SCREENPLAY & DIALOGUES

Jagga Jasoos is co produced by #Disney and is the maiden venture of director-actor duo Anurag Basu-Ranbir Kapoor’s production house called #PictureShuru. And sure enough the film starts with that very memorable credit rolls song from #Barfi. Before you know it you have all characters singing out their dialogues and dancing (which for some strange reason reminded me of Disney’s classic #MaryPoppins) All of this is a little overwhelming and it takes about five minutes or so to get a grip on things. After which the next hour is an exhilarating ride the kind of which one has not experienced in years.Using the real life incident of the 1995 #Purulia arms drop case as a thread around which the whole screenplay is woven, Anurag Basu’s writing is brilliant. For most parts.

Human relationships are Anurag Basu’s forte and even in Jagga Jasoos the best parts are the emotional scenes. Like this whole father & son track. Scenes where characters break into song are especially well written (credit to the very talented #AmitabhBhattacharya) The clock tower mystery song, then the scene where Ranbir barges into Katrina’s house, the post interval Nimboo-mirchi number (which is a sarcastic take on the divisive times we live in) and the unexpectedly delightful singing at Katrina’s dead boyfriend’s birthday party are all inspired writing. Then there are the little touches – like the father curling his toe when lying, #Buddha’s theory of #TheRedCircle and Katrina’s clumsiness which results in many laugh-out-loud moments.

What does not work is the adventure bit. The action scenes seem half heartedly written & executed and do not really make your hair stand on end. The role of Jagga’s arch nemesis who is supposed to be this two headed freak does not intrigue the way it should have (even after the last scene where it is revealed that #NawazuddinSiddiqui is this villain) The whole thread of the international arms race is so-so and the only reason you play along is to know what happened to Jagga’s father. Then there is a lot that defies logic. Like Ranbir & Katrina breaking into a song while they are being hounded by authorities. Then there is this huge build up made about a mixed up video tape that is conveniently forgotten in the end.

TECHNICAL CREDITS

This is a bit of a mixed bag. While the DOP #RaviVarman makes sure that each and every scene be it set in the North East or #Morocco is straight out of a post card the action sequences, the post production work and the CGI are all strictly average. The music by Pritam is very good but Barfi will still remain the best from the Anurag Basu-Pritam duo (who also gave us Life in a Metro & #Gangster) The editing by Akiv Ali is excellent in the first half of the film which has a running length of 160 odd minutes.

PERFORMANCES

The actor who plays the local cop is quite good and the scene where he gets a phone call in the station is quite funny. #SaurabhShukla is one of the finest actors we have and was truly memorable in his last film Barfi. Here his role is sketchy and half baked. Same goes for #KatrinaKaif who is supposed to be this investigative journalist but is mostly playing sidekick to Ranbir’s Jagga. All she does is fall and hurt herself at the drop of a hat. Though it has been used well as a plot device especially while reuniting Jagga with his father.

Though Barfi is a tough act to follow Ranbir Kapoor is quite superb in the title role of Jagga Jasoos. Whether he is sauntering through an empty boy’s hostel on his unique design bike or solving a seemingly tricky case Ranbir is the soul of this film. Watch him break down in a stammering fit in front of the friendly, neighbourhood policeman and you know this man can really, really act. The scene stealer of this enterprise is Bengali actor #SaswataChatterjee who gained immense popularity back home playing Topshe the loveable side kick of the legendary Bengali detective #Feluda (created by #SatyajitRay) Last seen in Hindi films playing a brilliant cameo in Sujoy Ghosh’s #Kahaani he is quite extraordinary in every scene that he appears in. Such is his impact that you as an audience hope fervently that he has not died.

DIRECTION

What to make next ? This is the question that has vexed some of the best directors of Bollywood. Ramesh Sippy made #Sholay when he was 27 and could not make anything half as good afterwards. #AdityaChopra made his debut with the smash hit #DDLJ but has made nothing of significance since. Similar thoughts must have run through director Anurag Basu’s mind after making a sublime Barfi. That was five years ago. Jagga Jasoos is a brave film that attempts to use the whole theatre-like musical format to tell a story and almost succeeds. It is not a perfect film but that is perhaps because Basu has too much on his plate. Yet if Jagga Jasoos works and (it does for most part) all credit must go to him. For sticking his neck out and taking such a huge risk. And to think that we had almost lost this man to cancer in the year 2004. After which is when he has made all his best films. More power to you, dada.

VERDICT

It may not be everyone’s cup of tea but Jagga Jasoos with it’s unique musical style of narration makes for an invigorating watch. It has great performances, good music and is very entertaining for most parts. It falters at places in the latter half but only just. May be it will not appeal to the masses but the gentry, one suspects will love it. Do yourself a favour this weekend. Go watch Jagga Jasoos.

Jab Harry Met Sejal – Music Review

INTRO

The coming together of two of the biggest #RomanticIcons of our times, that is of director #ImtiazAli and superstar #ShahRukhKhan to make a romantic film is surely cause for celebration. While #KingKhan has made this genre all his own with a number of blockbusters to his name, Imtiaz Ali has shown that subjects dealing with quirky romance are his forte. If the initial teasers & promos, that have been received very well by the fans, are anything to go by we are in for a fun ride.

Imtiaz Ali’s films have always had glorious music from #JabweMet to #LoveAajKal, #Rockstar, #Cocktail & #Highway the soundtrack of these films have won favor with the discerning and the masses alike. Jab Harry Met Sejal (JHMS) also reunites Imtiaz Ali with music director #Pritam(who has hit a purple patch of late) after three films on the trot with A.R.Rehman. So to say that expectations are huge would not be exaggerating. Does JHMS meet these gargantuan expectations? Read on.

1. RADHA: JHMS also brings back the winning combo of ace wordsmith (read lyrics writer) #IrshadKamil who has been a regular feature of possibly all Imtiaz Ali films and seems to understand the quirky nature of his films only too well. Which is quite clearly evident in the song #Radha. Though one must confess that at first hearing one felt that the song was a little underwhelming it does grow on you after a couple of hearings. And yes the way the song is picturised on the lead couple does help too. The alaap at the very start by that mellifluous yet very underused talent #ShahidMallya sets the tone for the entire song. With the character of #Sejal aka Anushka being that of a vivacious girl #SunidhiChauhan fits the bill to a T. Even as one is writing this the song has attained chartbuster status.

2. BEECH BEECH MEIN: In the last few years #Disco numbers that pay a tribute to the swinging 70s and the boisterous 80s have made their way into Hindi films. The first one possibly in this genre was the peppy It’s The Time To Disco from Karan Johar’s #KalHoNaaHo. We recently heard #TeriMeri composed by #VishalShekhar for the Hrithik Roshan starrer #BangBang and it became a big hit too. A personal favorite though is by the same composers for the dud #GoriTerePyaarMein. The song was the pulsating #Dhat Teri Ki which still makes one want to stand up and dance.

Beech Beech Mein brings together the duo of #ArijitSingh (this man never ceases to surprise with his incredible range) and the powerhouse voice of #ShalmaliKholgade in a song that is a slow burner. It is more tap-your-feet-gently kind of music than stand up and dance. But once it settles into a groove, the beats are indeed infectious. This one will only grow in the coming days.

3. SAFAR: The best track in the entire album is this velvety dulcet rendered by, who else Arijit Singh!Setting a mild tempo right from the outset here is a song that portrays what the film is all about, in a nutsell. So to speak. The journey (#Safar) of this free spirited guide along with a sassy traveller is very well explained in this song. The song also has evocative lyrics that will make you treasure this song. And put it on the playlist whenever you are on a road trip. Mesmerising.

4. RADHA(remix): One does not quite understand the compulsions behind adding a remix version to the Radha song. Because it does not really add anything new to the listening experience. Could have been avoided.

VERDICT

Jab Harry Met Sejal is very good while it lasts. How one wishes that the film had a song or two more to add to the listener’s delight. But to be fair to the director his script perhaps does not merit a need for more songs. Of what is on offer here there is a lot to like. And enjoy. Recommended

RATINGS: 3.5/5

MOM – Move over Mother India, Mom is in town

Beware the fury of a patient man – John Dryden

INTRO

It is a sign of how bad things are when film after hard hitting film dealing with heinous crimes
against women are all set in the national capital of #Delhi. From No One Killed Jessica (good) to
#Talvar (very good) and last year’s #Pink (excellent) each was a scathing comment on the appalling state of affairs. Where the rich and powerful often collude with the law makers to deny justice to the hapless victims. Now debutant director #RaviUdyawar decides to base his revenge saga #Mom in the same city. Is it not time the authorities in charge woke up and smelt the stench?

STORY

Life is not easy for Devki(Sridevi) a teacher by profession who is trying to fix a strained relationship with her teenage step daughter Arya (Sajal Ali) So much so that Arya calls her ‘madam’ even at home. But things take a turn for the worse when Arya is brutally violated by four uncouth boys and dumped in the sewage. The grief stricken parents seek justice from the courts but due to insufficient evidence the miscreants go scot free. Devki joins hands with a sympathetic local detective DK (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) to exact revenge. Taking down all the four deviants. One by one.

SCRIPT, SCREENPLAY & DIALOGUES

A few weeks ago we saw the release of #RaveenaTandon starrer #Matr that came and went without a
whimper. Like Matr, Maa also takes inspiration from the 2012 South Korean film #Don’tCryMommy. But Telugu film writer Kona Venkat & Girish Kohli clearly are talented writers and the brilliant first half is indicative of this. One particular line that Sridevi says “Agar aap ko bure aur bahut bure me chunna hota to kise chunte?” stays with you. It defines not just the film but even perhaps the times that we live in today. The second half that goes into the familiar territory of revenge is a little underwhelming. And seems at least 15 minutes longer than it should have been. Plus the climax is a messy affair. In the end it is the strong performances from the cast that salvage the film.

TECHNICAL CREDITS

Mom is technically top notch. Special mention must be made of the DOP #AnayGoswami (Mumbai Cutting, Kai Po Che, No One Killed Jessica) with the composition of the brutal gang rape scene deserving kudos. The scene is hard hitting without having to resort to cheap, exploitative shots. AR Rehman’s music in the film is shockingly pedestrian but he more than makes up for it with his marvelous background score. #MonishaBaldawa the editor (of #Neerja fame) slips up especially in the latter portions but for which this could have been a more taut film.

PERFORMANCES

The biggest strength of Mom is the cast. The Pakistan duo of #AdnanSiddiqui (underplaying wonderfully in the role of Devki’s husband) or #SajalAli as the rape victim who stands her own in every scene with Sridevi are both excellent. Abhimanyu Singh playing the chief tormentor does what is expected of him but frankly, after Anurag Kashyap’s #Gulaal his career has imploded. Akshay Khanna playing a cop who is chasing Sridevi & Nawaz is so good that one wishes there was more of him. The parking lot scene is testament to the pedigree this man possesses. #NawazuddinSiddiqui as DK is virtually unrecognizable in his hideous getup but is in his element here. Like #Badlapur, #BajrangiBhaijaan and #Raees he is able to get into the skin of his character with such alacrity that he makes the length of the role irrelevant. And like in the aforementioned films he almost overshadows Sridevi who has a clearly author backed role. Like the scene in the art gallery that brings the house down.

Sridevi appearing on the big screen five years after the very well received #EnglishVinglish is in sublime form here. In a career spanning five decades (Mom is her 300th film) you would think that she has done it all. Far from. There are enough times you have gooseflesh just looking at the mere twitch of her nose and pursing of the lips. Such is the power of her performance. When one saw #KamalHassan breaking down on seeing his son’s dead body in the cult #Nayakan one thought nobody could ever touch that. Wait till you watch Sridevi break down in the hospital after seeing her daughter lying battered in bed. That one scene alone is worth the price of your movie ticket (and the diet Coke & popcorn) With Mom, Sridevi again proves that a great performance can lift a flawed film.

DIRECTION

After English Vinglish, Sridevi works with another debutant who is also coincidentally an ad film maker The multi talented Ravi Udyawar makes a sparkling debut with Mom. Here he chooses a tough subject that he handles with great finesse and sensitivity. If only the second half was as good as the first, Mom could have been a classic. But having said that Udyawar shows enough promise and delivers a film that works for most parts. A welcome addition, for sure.

VERDICT

Revenge films are surefire hits. The audience loves an underdog who fights and wins. As long as it is well made and Mom is just that. Though it is let down by an iffy script and cliche ridden second half, there is a lot that audiences will love in the film. This is no PINK but nevertheless riding on the back of winsome performances, Mom is sure to be a big hit.

RAMAN RAGHAV 2.0 (2016) – A journey into the mind of a psychopath

  Disclaimer: These are the ones that got away. Below are impressions from a belated viewing on the small screen.

RAMAN RAGHAV 2.0 (2016) – A journey into the mind of a psychopath

And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you – Friedrich Nietzsche

INTRO

A few weeks ago heard about the sad demise of writer-director #JonathanDemme, the man behind what is arguably the finest #SerialKiller flick of all time, #THESILENCEOFTHELAMBS. A number of notable films have been made in this genre like #AlfredHitchcock’s #PSYCHO, #OliverStone’s NATURAL BORN KILLERS and David Fincher’s #SEVEN to name the ones that come off the top of one’s head. Yet nothing comes close to the character of #HannibalLector (a spine chilling Anthony Hopkins) Never before had one got to see a psychopath at work, from such close quarters. It was disturbing(mostly), nauseating(several instances) and enthralling(at times) Compare this with our own Bollywood which is surprisingly bereft of good movies in this genre. Look around and all you will find is #KAHAANI (whodunit) #EKVILLAIN (puerile) and GUPT (commercial potboiler) Can RAMAN RAGHAV 2.0 fill up this lacunae? Read on.

STORY

RAMAN RAGHAV is inspired by the real life story of a person called #SindhiDalwai (Nawaz calls himself by this name several times in a scene) While the original killer lived in Bombay (now Mumbai) of the 1960s and used to specifically target pavement dwellers this fellow is a copy cat. The whole film plays out like a game of cat and mouse (Tom & Jerry anyone?) between the killer (#NawazuddinSiddiqui) and the cop (#VickyKaushal) chasing him. Only here it is the other way around. As the film hurtles towards a stunning climax, the body count rises.

SCREENPLAY & DIALOGUES

The introductory scene of the film is reminiscent of Kevin Spacey’s delightful whodunit #THEUSUALSUSPECTS and the chapter wise style of story telling is perhaps a subtle homage to #Tarantino. Also the way the hunter becomes the hunted by the latter half of the film reminds one of Coen Brothers’s haunting NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN. But that apart, RAMAN RAGHAV 2.0 is all Anurag Kashyap. Vintage Kashyap that is. The real locations (set in the city’s vast slums) and the dreary lighting creates a sense of foreboding in the viewer. Never once does the camera voyeuristically pan on the splattered bodies of the victims. Never do we see Nawaz striking any of his victims dead (Though one does see Kaushal’s character whacking someone on the head in the penultimate scene) No blood curling screams, no sound of metal against skull, nothing. And almost always during a crime the camera is on the killer.

In fact, in what is the most terrifying chapter where Nawaz’s character murders his sister & her family the mere sound of iron car-jack (the murder weapon) being dragged along the floor is enough to send chills down the spine. Therein lies the victory of the director. If you thought all this made for difficult viewing wait till you see the cop’s side of things. As a cocaine snorting ACP whose life is coming undone, Kaushal is sublime. Be it the scenes where he kills a drug peddler or the one where he roughs up his father, edgy does not quite do complete justice to how terrifying the character is. Just like in RGV’s COMPANY where the cigarette becomes like an extension of Ajay Devgan (his most underrated performance) here it is the sunglasses of Kaushal’s. Credit must go to the taut writing (by #VasanBala & Kashyap himself) for keeping both the parallel tracks equally engaging.

TECHNICAL CREDITS

Having edited close to half a dozen films directed by Kashyap, Aarti Bajaj knows a thing or two about Kashyap’s films. And the world that they inhabit in. While self indulgence is something that he has been accused of in the past this one has no extra flab. With a running time of 135 minutes, RAMAN RAGHAV 2.0 moves at a frenetic pace all the way through. Choosing Jay Oza (the lensman of the hit Hindi TV series #24) who has not really shot any feature films was fraught with risk but the gamble pays off and how! The music by Ram Sampath is in sync with the sombre mood of the film and Qatl-e-Aam is pulsating while the background score is unnecessarily loud at times (like in the scene where the cop accidentally kills his lover)

PERFORMANCES

When Mukesh Chhabra is the casting director rest assured that even the smallest of roles will stand out. Be it the person who plays Nawaz’s sister (Amrutha Subhash) the sister’s husband or even the man playing the money lender everyone is right up there. As the girl stuck in an abusive relationship model turned actress Sobhita Dhulipala makes a sparkling debut with the film. Kashyap’s incredible eye for detail comes to the fore in a scene where she is seen having a conversation with her father in chaste Telugu (the actress was born in Andhra)

For actor Vicky Kaushal who won a lot of accolades for his role in the criminally under rated MASAAN this role is as different as chalk is from cheese. Hiding his face in large sunglasses for most part of the film, you never really get to see what is going on in that mind. Nor does he speak much. Yet his extraordinary body language ensures that the tension is palpable as long as he is on the screen. Though Nawaz has the eyeball grabbing, flamboyant role, that Kaushal underplays his role and yet never gets overawed by Nawaz is testament to his talent. The scene in which he accidentally kills his lover in a bout of anger is quite surreal.

What can one say about Nawazuddin Siddiqui that has not been said already? Forget towering personality he is diminutive in height and ordinary looking. Neither does he have a booming voice nor do his eyes burn with intensity. Yet when he appears on the screen, Nawaz is like fire. You take your eyes off him at your own peril. Even in seemingly innocuous scenes like the one where he is locked up by the cops and shouting out for help. My favorite scene is right at the end where Nawaz tells the cop about the reasons that compel him to kill. Mindboggling!

DIRECTION

Anurag Kashyap changes the standard template of serial killer flicks on it’s head by revealing it all in the very first scene. And with the killer stalking the cop convinced that they are both soul mates this is as different a serial killer as any made in Bollywood. From his very first film PAANCH Kashyap has consciously chosen themes that are dark (incest, drugs, violence, crime) and pushed the envelope with his narrative style. His films explore the dark recesses of the human mind and characters that inhabit his world are more black than white with generous doses of grey. Apart from a minor ‘blip’ called BOMBAY VELVET his films have never failed to shock. They always provoke strong reactions – either you love his films or hate them. There is never anything in between. RAMAN RAGHAV 2.0 is right up his alley and will count as one of those films in which it all comes together. For most parts. And coming on the back of the disturbing UGLY this one is uglier.

VERDICT

For those who have not watched a Kashyap film before this one is a must watch. As long as you have the stomach for it. For fans of Kashyap, RAMAN RAGHAV 2.0 is among the Top 5 (Gangs of Wasseypur, Black Friday, Gulaal and Ugly being the others) Not an easy watch this!

Tubelight Movie Review : This tubelight flickers incessantly, never really turns on

Just remember, life is like a box of chocolates – from the book Norwegian Wood

INTRO

Here is an interesting bit of stat. Since the Academys were first awarded (in the year #1929) a
whopping 16% of the awards for Best Actor & Actress have been snared by those actors whose characters have some kind of #Disability. Be it a blind #AlPacino (Scent of a Woman) or an austistic Dustin Hoffman (#RainMan) an OCD afflicted #JackNicholson (As Good as it Gets) or a low IQ #TomHanks (#ForrestGump) they have all been there and ‘won’ that. Back home it is more of the same. A blind Naseeruddin Shah (#Sparsh) a deaf-mute Sanjeev Kumar (#Koshish) a progeria patient Amitabh Bachchan (#Paa) all won National Awards (and we are not even mentioning the women here) So when reigning Bollywood superstar Salman ‘bhai’ Khan decides to play a man-child in a film titled TUBELIGHT it evokes tremendous curiosity. Rajat Kamal beckons?

WARNING : SPOILERS AHEAD

STORY

Set in #1962 right in the middle of the #IndiaChinaWar Tubelight takes us through the journey of a man-child Laxman Singh Bisht (The makers reckon surnames are enough to create authenticity) played by Salman Khan and his brother Bharat (a terrible-as-always Sohail Khan) who is the whole world to Tubelight (nicknamed so by his neighbours for being slow on the take) So what happens when Bharat leaves to fight for his country? How does Laxman fend for himself? This makes up the rest of the film.

SCRIPT, SCREENPLAY & DIALOGUES

The film is based on #Mexican director #AlejandroMonteverde’s LITTLE BOY which was set in the Second World War. In Tubelight the Chinese replace the Japs as the enemy and director Kabir Khan gets Salman to swap places with the ‘Little Boy’ Trouble is that the original film itself was severely panned by critics so it is difficult to understand the director’s compulsions behind adapting what is basically a flawed film. Not surprisingly the results are unflattering, to put it mildly. The writing by Parvez Shaikh and the director himself which seemed simple and yet effective in BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN clearly are the culprit. Situations seemed contrived, emotions are not natural and clearly the pressure to try and outdo the previous film shows. The dialogues by Manurishi Chadha seems too overbearing and preachy.

And that the film moves at a snail’s pace means that the running time of nearly two and a half hours seem excruciating. Yes there are moments when this Tubelight flickers promising to shine in a new light but does not. Like the #BharatMataKiJai scene that is an inspired piece of writing. As are the moments between the two brothers so also the ones involving the young boy who Salman’s character befriends. Yet these are too few and too far in between. In the end director Kabir Khan under duress to outperform BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN forgets that Salman Khan is no Ranbir Kapoor. And ‘Bhai’ is clearly out of depth here.Tubelight

TECHNICAL CREDITS

Like all Kabir Khan films this one is also technically flawless. Well almost. The #DOP by Aseem Mishra who has worked on most films of Kabir Khan is quite extraordinary and every frame seems a picture postcard. Music director #Pritam who cannot do anything wrong right now is in fine fettle here as well. Almost all songs in the film are terrific and the score in Tubelight is one of it’s plus points. A sore point is the lackadaisical editing by Rameshwar Bhagat.

PERFORMANCES

TUBELIGHT boasts of a fine starcast but wastes them in half baked inconsequential roles. Like #OmPuri (his first film after he passed away) who has been given terrible lines that infuriate and irritate instead of inspiring. Mohammed Zeeshan Ayub as the village bully who is always slapping around Salman’s character is clearly getting typecast in roles that are one dimensional and repetitive. Shahrukh Khan appears for a few minutes as a magician and must say that his camaraderie with Salman in that scene is great to watch. Alas! It gets over too soon. Chinese actress #ZhuZhu seems to have jumped right out of a wall hanging. Pretty as a picture and wooden as they come.

Young Matin Rey Tangu like the child actress in Kabir Khan’s last film is a complete natural and his scenes with Salman lift the second half of the movie. The last time one saw the two sons of Salim Khan coming together was in a disastrous HELLO BROTHER. Compared to which TUBELIGHT is still passable but one wonders how the dynamics would have changed had this role been played by someone who could act. Having said that his scenes with Salman are the only reason the film might become a hit.

Last but quite obviously not the least is Salman Khan who clearly seems to have bitten more than he can chew here. Dunno who tried convincing him to take up the gauntlet but the fact he seems unconvinced shows in scene after scene of the film. The eyes are a dead giveaway. Gone is the childlike innocence and the mischievous glint is replaced by puzzlement and unsurity. If given a choice, Salman would gladly be elsewhere. As would the audiences.

DIRECTION

Kabir Khan seems to be smarting from the astonishing success of BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN and to be fair he is not the only one. Be it the great Ramesh Sippy post SHOLAY or Aditya Chopra who in two decades since DDLJ has not been able to make a film that is even half as good they know only too well how it feels. TUBELIGHT has it’s heart in the right place and espouses the right message – of universal brotherhood. But unlike in BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN where it was all organic here a lot of scenes, situations and dialogues seem contrived. And for a film that comes across as overtly emotional there is a surprising lack of emotional connect with the audience. One only hopes that #KabirKhan realises this and goes back to the drawing board.

VERDICT

TUBELIGHT releases during #Eid and the earth shattering initial that it fetches itself might be enough for the producers to laugh all the way to the bank. After all there are worse films of ‘Bhai’ that have made moolah and s**t loads of it. But for those expecting this to set new records at the box office and eclipse DANGAL,P.K. and even BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN will be sorely disappointed. Forget 300 crores. This one will be lucky to cross 200 even.