The much hype created by the 2000Â´s releases of Mela, Bulandi, and Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani failed to live up to the audiencesÂ´ standards, and all of the additional publicity given to the potential blockbusters (e.g. actual appearances by the stars themselves at events) could not help the movies from sinking. The latest Bobby Deol movie, though, took more of the low-key approach, with little publicity and exposure, leaving the audience to low expectations, hence, less likelihood of disappointment. Smart, but maybe it would have been better if the movie had something different from the first three, apart from different publicity strategies, so it wouldnÂ´t suffer the same fate...
The setting is 1984 and riots were engulfing parts of Punjab and Delhi. Cops are swarming the city looking for terrorists, and BadalÂ´s (Bobby Deol) family becomes victim to their ruthless killings, err, investigations. From that moment, he takes a vow of revenge and the target becomes Jai Singh Rana (Ashutosh Rana), the head (and naturally corrupt) police officer who instigated the killings and is burning down gaos and shooting people without a blink of an eye.(Did you actually expect Ashutosh Rana to do anything otherwise?) Badal gets picked up by a gunda, Ashish Vidyarthi, and becomes a terrorist out for revenge.(Jaanwar, anyone?)
And Rani? Of course she prances in! Rich spoilt brat, of course! They meet when Badal comes to Sundernagar, and Soni (Rani) makes Badal her object of affection, trying everything to hook up with him.(Songs, bad clothes, flirty prancing, of course). Amrish Puri plays A.C.P. Ranjeet Singh, who welcomes Badal into his family, ignorant of BadalÂ´s true identity.
Bobby became victim to the barber, who chopped his curly locks, and well, being one of those who absolutely loathed his swinging hair, I must admit, he may actually look better with them (or may be just a trim). His acting is pretty good, considering he comes from a family of pakka punjabi actors, and is improving by the movie (his last being Dillagi). He, does, though, have the dancing gene that definitely skipped Stiff Sunny. He does a good job with his expressions (frowning and such)...either that, or he is just really bored in his role (hence, the frowning).
Rani, on the other hand, was not exactly up to her KKHH calibre (or was it just an illusion, looking at her preceeding releases...). She basically wore tiny slivers of clothing (and with her uhhmm figure, she may be needed just a tad bit more fabric...try, maybe, a CLOAK) and pranced around. Surprise, surprise.
Ashutosh Rana did a good job in his vicious killer a.k.a. typical gunda police officer sort of role. And for those who actually miss Mayuri Kango (remember her?), she makes her appearance...just donÂ´t blink, or youÂ´ll miss her. Ahh, yes, and Suman "Aa Ab Laut Chale" Ranganathan, the worst depiction of an ABCD, is back to disappoint in a quick song with a fellow Bollywood reject, Mink (fast-forward, fast-forward). And not to forget Johnny Lever, the perfectly atypical (looking) sardar, but the perfectly typical (acting) sardar, who provided for the comedic angle.
The movie is passable if you really like Bobby and Rani. Worth going to the theater? No. Wait for it on video? Yes, and you can even wait long enough for it to come out on DVD (or even Zee TV) to watch it. That bad? Sort of, yes, if you take it at face value. But if you compare it to some of the other recent releases, it isnÂ´Â´t so bad.