Khiladi 786

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Akshay Kumar is back as Khiladi …. for the 8th time. And this time he is Khiladi 786. I am always wary when I watch AK movies because they go from funny to ridiculous to absolute torture very quickly and I didn’t expect much from this one either. I knew nothing about the film before I started watching it, so I groaned when I saw Akshay as a police officer. Another Dabangg wannabe? You have to give it to Hindi film makers. They are utterly shameless in their lifting of ideas, scenes and sometimes entire storylines. So, as I sank into my seat thinking it would be something worse than Dabangg. (can anything be worse than Dabangg?) I was pleasantly surprised to find the movie quite tolerable and very funny.

So, Akshay is Khiladi Bhaiya (you have to listen to the song … it just grows on you and yes, it’s quite like the Dabangg title song) and he is 72 Singh as in Bahattar Singh. His brothers are Pichhattar, tehattar …. you get the drift. He also has a brother ikhattar who is his twin. You know how every second 70’s movie would have twins going to a mela and then tragedy would strike. Well, that’s what happens to Bahattar’s twin but you don’t shed any tears when you hear this. You just laugh mercilessly. Bahattar has superpowers as all Indian heroes do, his tag line is something along the lines of  – Duniya main teen hi cheezein hain jo nazar nahin aati – ek bhooton ka sansaar, doosra pyar aur teesra bahattar ki raftaar. So, he beats up the bad guys, has a very multicultural family and then runs into Asin (of Ghajini fame). She is TTT’s (Mithun Chakraborty) younger sister who is waiting for her boyfriend Azad to get out of jail. Notice the cleverness of the name, Azad locked up in jail? Poor Azad comes close to being released several times but just doesn’t make it until the good guy rescues him.

So, the love story isn’t much of a story. Both Bahattar and Indu are having trouble getting married so the matchmakers decide to tie their knot. And the matchmaker is none other than Himesh Reshammiya accompanied by a caricature of Amol Palekar. Himesh has to arrange at least one successful rishta to prove to his father that he can be successful on his own, Bahattar has to get married to any girl and Indu has to make sure that she does not get married to anyone except Azad. So, does anyone get married in the end?

Overall, I enjoyed the film. Complete bakwaas, mindless fun which made you laugh out loud several times. I thought the comedy was quite well done and I could imagine the crew having a blast writing the lines and making the film. For example, while TTT quotes the very staid, Sanskrit shlok which is the motto of Maharashtra police, his Punjabi counterparts’ motto for Punjab police is …. hiliarious. Then, if you are a hindi movie buff, you will get the other jokes, like when Indu throws a flower pot at Bahattar, he says – Main jatt gamla pagla deewana! Azad is quite a character too, as is the supporting cast.

And if you do start to get distracted, the movie is shot in the brightest of colours, the songs are loud and the dancing is mad. Nothing subtle about this movie. So, I hear that Himesh wrote the film and produced it, along with Akshay and Twinkle. But still, did they have to use Himesh’s voice? The voice and Akshay did not gel at all. But I loved the visuals of the song shot in Dubai/Saudi Arabia/desert somewhere. And thankfully the voice isn’t Himesh’s but not much of an improvement. Mika Singh is a permanent fixture in AK films and Long Drive is his item in the film.

All in all, a fun movie that will make you laugh provided you leave your scepticism, intelligence and reasoning at the door. You might just say – Saadhe naal rahoge te aish karoge …..

 

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