Ek Tha Tiger

Thursday, 16 August 2012 10:56 Sharad Vatss

Ek Tha Tiger sees Salman in familiar territories.


I know, all you Salman’s fans must be grinning at me. Despite my ratings, his last three movies have all grossed more than Rs one billion. In fact, his movies have redefined the definition of success. The super hit is now a Rs one billion or above grosser. I won’t be surprised if Ek Tha Tiger joins this new club.

Story: This time it’s different, for a change. It's not a remake of any South-Indian movie. Although inspired by the James bond movies' style of opening and closing, Jackie Chan's style chases, it has Salman’s trade mark romance, dance and dialogue delivery. It also reminds you of Dhoom and Kites in parts.

Tiger (Salman Khan) is a RAW agent, who works 24x7, uses nation’s money to gift his girlfriend (as he is always on duty), saves his salary in the bank (Rs 23 Lakh in 12 years! Are our RAW officers so lowly paid?) and is a James Bond avatar. He is sent to Ireland to spy upon an Indian scientist (Roshan Seth) suspected of sharing India's anti-missile technology with Pakistan. There he encounters a Pakistani girl Zoya (Katrina) working as scientist’s caretaker. He falls in love with her but his duty does not allow him to get involved in anything related to 'dil' and Pakistan. Tiger and Zoya play with each other and their respective countries' spy departments, creating 'so called' thrill in the movie before reaching an obvious end.

Performance: Need not to mention anything about Salman. He plays himself again. So Tiger is Salman, with his baby gait, tight lipped dialogues, exercise like dancing and gruesome action scenes. The way his fans love him.

Katrina tries something called acting. She works extra to deliver some dialogues with glyceride eyes lost somewhere. Don't expect anything more. Her ability to shake a leg is a repeat.

The lead pair looks uneasy while romancing. They look a great pair but don’t work as a great pair. The expressions are missing. The only time they look comfortable is in scenes where they are not confronting each other. This lets the movie down.

Roshan Seth’s personality suits his character. Girish karnad is a pleasure to watch and reminds you of what an acting school he is.

Ranveer shorey gets an important role but fails to make his presence felt. His bearded avatar doesn’t look good either.

Direction and Writing: Director Kabir Khan returns with another thriller after Kabul Express and New York. His narrative is simple. He has not tried anything extra beyond the screenplay. Except for the thunderous opening the movie goes very slow in the first half. You have to wait for almost an hour for anything exciting to happen. Towards the end, the film gathers pace with a chase sequence.

The screenplay is in pieces. It seems they had three parts in mind - Introduction of protagonists (fast and comic), Developing the story (romantic, dramatic and at times sentimental), The end (full of action). The plot of a spy thriller gave them the liberty to roam the world freely. Starting from Iraq, to Thailand, Ireland, Cuba, Istanbul, etc. The film moves at an unsteady pace.

The dialogues are good and Salman delivers them with equal honesty. In Cuba, Zoya translates a wall graffiti of Che Guevara as, "Jis mohabbat mein deewangi nahin, woh mohabbat hi nahin." I just hope Gulzar sahib was holidaying there while writing this.

Camera and Action: Camera work by Aseem Mishra is good but suffers from lack of new definitions. Iraq is muddy, Istanbul is bluish and all mosque, Cuba is about cigars, hats and dances. The actions sequence are captured well though.

In fact action choreography is the only thing you will take back home. Katrina has equally participated to mark this as her first ever action film. The body doubles and computer graphics make sequences quite convincing and breathtaking. Salman has done his usual ‘utha patak’ well. The action scenes sometimes reminds you of Rajini sir, especially the one in which Tiger stops a running metro with the grip of his coat or when he jumps into a plane from his motorcycle.

Music: Sohail Sen music is the weak part of the movie. Only the last track by Sajid-Wajid 'mashallah' is a treat to watch and listen. Don't miss this one!

The background score though is good and sets the pace of the movie.

If you have given your 'dil' to Salman, then I’m sure you would leave your 'dimagh' at home while going for his movies. As for me, my dil knows, this is a hit, but my dimagh doesn't allow me to rate it high.

All the best Salman! Keep entertaining your Fans.


(Rating: **1/2)


---Sharad Vatss is a movie buff who works for Pepsi.