Sunday, September 6, 2015

Welcome back review: "Far from being welcome!!!"

Over the years, Bollywood have churned out numerous sequels hoping to cash in on the popularity of its predecessor. Invariably, many of them have hit the bull's eye such as "Dabaang 2" or "Singham Returns"; while others like "Ab Tak Chappan 2" have bit the dust. This weekend we have Anees Bazmee with the sequel of the hilarious blockbuster "Welcome" . Now the question is whether "Welcome Back" be as successful as its prequel after all such movies with a nonsensical story-line depends solely on the cast & screenplay???


Uday Shetty (Nana Patekar) & Majnu bhai (Anil Kapoor) have mended their ways (or so they believed) & led an upright life which they still found hard to be accustomed to as they were now paying hafta to small time crooks. Both of them were still single & harbored hopes of entering into matrimonial bliss after they get floored by Rajkumari Nandhini alias Babita (Ankita Shrivastava). In fact, she was no royalty as she along with her mom, Poonam (Dimple Kapadia) conned people on the pretext of romance & these two dimwits happened to be their latest victims. At around this time, Uday realises that he has a step sister in the form of Ranjhana (Shruti Hassan) & the search for a suitable groom for her takes them to Dr. Ghunghroo's (Paresh Rawal) household again. When they are told that Dr. Ghunghroo had a son Ajju (John Abraham) (step-son actually), they have no qualms in fixing the alliance expecting him to be as cavalier as his father & cousin. But the truth was Ajju barely had a semblance of such virtues as he was an infamous gangster who ruled the roost in Mumbai. 


In the past decade or so, the kind of movies that Anees Bazmee have created has been pathetic to say the least as none of them barely had a plot though there were a couple of hilarious ones like "Welcome" and "Singh is Kingg". His latest venture "Welcome Back" is no different , but unlike it's prequel this one severely suffers from lack of smart dialogues and witty one liners. Inspite of an able cast at his disposal, the film fails to sustain a smile on our face for more than a scene or two which leaves us perplexed wondering whether the humour sense of the makers was so poor. In the technical department, the grandiosity of Dubai was aptly showcased through Kabir Lal's lenses while the other aspects doesn't deserve much of a mention.

Anil Kapoor & Nana Patekar are the life source of this movie and they have done it in style especially the former who was bang on as the stylish, tapori lingo spewing bhai. As for the other veterans, Paresh Rawal doesnt get much riotous lines while Nasserudeen Shah & Dimple Kapadia were over the top. It's kinda known that John can break a shoulder much more easily than shoulder a scene with his comic timing like Akshay. He fails miserably as expected just like his co-star Shruti Hassan & we are left wondering as to why both of them were even casted in the first place. 

Verdict: "Welcome" was not a great movie by any stretch of imagination but it was rollicking  to say the least & when compared to it's sequel, it seems like a classic now. Anywaz the sequel will surely cash in the initial but will struggle in the long run as it wont have the word of mouth in its favour. The humour is so trite that there is an oft repeated dialogue in the movie "Yeh Toh Mazaak Tha" which seemed more like a cue for the audience to laugh rather than serve any other purpose. In short, give it a miss!!!

Rating: 1.75/5

Regards...Ben

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Thani Oruvan review: "Dont be the thani oruvan to miss out on Aravind's mesmerizing show!!!"

In the last couple of days, I came across some FB posts praising Aravind Swamy's performance in a negative role that he essayed in "Thani Oruvan". This naturally aroused my curiosity after all I have seen him predominantly only in roles which are endowed with virtues. With M. Raja calling the shots & that too in the company of his brother, Jayam Ravi; I was kinda sure that it would be entertaining. But was it as awesome as some of the posts proclaimed???


Mithran (Jayam Ravi), an IPS trainee along with his friends used to discreetly assist the police whenever an opportunity arose. But with time it dawns upon them, that their efforts to quell crime barely made an impression as the culprits used to get off scot free due to the influence of honchos. This enticed Mithran to uncover the kingpins behind all the crimes happening in the city & takes it upon himself to put an end to it. However, the further he delved through the evidence; it becomes apparent that the renowned scientist & son of Home Minister, Siddharth Abhimanyu (Aravind Swamy) was the one pulling the strings. It was no mean task to take down a person with such impeccable credentials, but Mithran & his friends were determined to put an end to this menace. Little did they realise that Siddharth was always a step ahead of them. 


The moment that I heard that it was M.Raja's movie, I assumed this might be the remake of some Telugu blockbuster after all he is the king of remakes. However, if I'm not wrong, I believe he has come up with an original script this time around (I could be wrong) in the company of Subha & the aspect that they have emphasized on is given as the tag line: "Your opponent makes you realize your capacity".Though some of the sequences seemed far fetched & convenient, the well etched characters made it an engaging experience. In the technical department, Hiphop Tamizha's music was fine while Ramji's visuals were top notch as it provided that edgy feel required for a thriller. Thanks to the engaging narration & commendable editing by Gopikrishna, it doesnt make us look at our watches inspite of being 160 mins.

Usually when we talk about performances, it's quite natural to talk about the hero first; but the one we would root for here is the antagonist brilliantly performed by Aravind Swamy. Frankly speaking, I never knew he could ooze such cold blooded villainous aura with mere looks & subtle expressions. Jayam Ravi was impressive in his role who stands toe to toe with Swami. Unlike majority of the movies, the female lead here wasnt merely for eye candy & Nayanthara has done utmost justice to it. As for the rest of the cast, all of them have done aptly and while Thambi Ramaiah tickles the funny bone I felt he was a miscast as Swami's father. 

Verdict: It has already garnered decent returns in Tamil Nadu & with none of the Onam releases going great guns, it should reap rich dividends from our state as well. The praise that I have heard about the film prior to watching it is more or less justified as it does keep us engaged. In short, the script might not be top notch but the characters makes it appear so. So dont miss it!!!

Rating: 3/5

Regards...Ben