Trying to poke holes ,into a Salman Khan movie , is like trying to shoot a sitting duck , that is lame and has been tied down to a boulder. It does not take much effort. As Salman Khan himself would have said it , “Tumhare movie main itne ched karoonga , ki confuzze ho jaoge , ki saans kahan se leni hai ..” And the internet and very many blogs are rife with such reviews. And I had complete intentions of adding to that formidable repertoire , when I decided to watch this movie. I had already made up my mind as to how I would write the review , and what clever sarcastic comments that I would throw in. But frankly , after watching the movie , I don’t have the heart to do so. I feel slightly ashamed , when I say this , but I actually enjoyed the movie. (sheepish grin) . So for once , may be this movie of Salman Khan , deserves a positive review.
Ofcourse , it is not to say that the movie is good. Far from it. In fact , I endured flak from my mother , all the way through the drive back from the movie hall , for dragging her to this movie. But then I told her , when you go to a Salman Khan movie , you are already prepared. The movie cannot be good. It can either be entertaining or boring. But good -never. And this one lives upto your expectations. It is definitely not good. But it is entertaining. And supremely so. Yes , the story is a mish mash of rehashed themes , which have been used like only a million times over before. Yes , the characters are mere caricatures with absolutely no depth or even a semblance of different facets. Yes , the narration is rather bumpy . Yes , the storyline is a mere , almost invisible thin thread , that threatens to break at any time. Yes , all of this notwithstanding , the movie manages to entertain.
For one , I am a South Indian. I have been brought up on a fare of South Indian films , and have enjoyed quite a few of them too (even more sheepish grin) . So this whole , good vs evil -macho hero- mother angle-daddy issues- foster brother-heroine role with absolutely no significance whatsoever , is just another day in the movie hall for me. It doesn’t bother me much. I can take it in my stride and try to look beyond the obvious flaws. Well frankly , there is nothing beyond the flaws actually. The flaws are the movie. But you get the point. I don’t mind watching such movies. When they are not pretending to be anything else other than the mish mash of old themes , with a generous sprinkle of masala thrown in. And that needs to be said about Dabangg . It does not pretend to be anything else.
Right from the first moment , the movie sets out to be an out and out masala entertainer. And perhaps , thats what works for the movie. The story ,or whatever excuse for a story that the movie has , is kept simple. The director has made sure , that the story does not interfere with the movie too much. And that worked. It is like a overly spicy dish , that you are eating. The spiciness is what carries the day. You know it is bad for you , but you like the spice , and you tell yourself , that for just this once , it’s ok.
For one , only Salman Khan could have , to use a cliche’ , breathed life into this role. Actually , it was like Salman Khan playing himself. So , no life breathing was actually required. Macho , crazy and unpredictable , he must have felt at home while enacting this role. The role did not demand much emoting or acting from the star , so , that was another saving grace. His dialogue delivery , is stilted as usual , but somehow goes with the role. But he does manage to adequately convey the persona , of a corrupt, macho ,crazy cop who has daddy issues. His comic timing is good , and it works because , there are some witty dialogues in the movie , and some genuinely funny moments , apart from those moments , ofcourse , which are funny because it is Salman Khan. His dance moves are atrocious , as usual , but truth be told , I am in love with that , hands-in-pockets- hud dabangg move. It has the potential to be right up there , with the towel step , in one of his earlier movies. Anyways , all in all , Salman Khan manages to carry off the role quite well.
Dimple Kapadia , as the ageing and troubled mother , is quite unconvincing. I dont know , what research she did for the role , to look the part of an ageing UP housewife , she only manages to convey that she is half retarded . A disaster of a role.
Vinod Khanna is adequate as the foster father. He does manage to convey meanness , when required , helplessness when called for , a mellowing down towards the end too. While the turnaround , in the father -son relationship , is kinda abrupt , who is talking about logic here anyways.
Arbaaz Khan , plays himself again. An idiot. So not much preparation needed to have gone into the role. He is adequate. He moves around the movie like a zombie , and does idiotic stuff , but then hey , he is Arbaaz Khan , so lets cut him some slack.
But the real find of the movie is Sonu Sood. He was the only one , in the movie , trying to play the role , rather than himself. And he does quite well too. As a corrupt ,up and coming young political leader , he is very convincing. His emoting and action seem very natural and effortless , his dialogue delivery quite free flowing and his expressions quite convincing. One of the best roles of his career , so far , am sure. He has proved that he’s got talent.
Sonakshi Sinha , well , she is there. She has only one expression on her face.It is like something sharp is pricking her in the rear side. And her face is frozen in that expression. Even when she is smiling or crying or …wait..she hasnt done much of anything else in the movie. So , yeah she is there. Has one expression throughout , has some songs , and thats about it I guess.
The dialogues are witty , and as I said before , there are some genuinely funny moments in the movie. And the rest of course is made funny by the very presence of Salman Khan. The songs are quite hummable , particularly Hud Dabangg and Munni Badnaam Hui ..
So , if you want a complete no pretense ,complete masala entertainer , go watch this movie. Take it from me , you wont be disappointed. For sheer entertainment , I give this a 4 out of 5. (sheepiest grin ever)