Gabbar is Back Movie Review

Thursday, April 30, 2015
Starring: Akshay Kumar, Shruti Hassan
Directed by: Krish
Produced By:Sanjay Leela Bhansali Shabina Khan
Written by: Rajat Arora
Cinematographer: Nirav Shah
Distributed by: Viacom 18 Motion Pictures
A dialogue in ‘Gabbar is Back’ says: Our system has become like a baby’s diaper. It’s a little wet in parts and loose in parts. The line succinctly encapsulates the film’s narrative.
Remade from the Tamil film ‘Ramanaa’ by A Murugadoss, ‘Gabbar is Back’ is about a vigilante (Akshay Kumar) who leads a team of young micro vigilantes in punishing corrupt government officials. They profile, research & then punish in a public manner by hanging corrupt men in public view, inspired by Saddam Hussein’s dictatorial regime in Iraq, I assume. Gabbar becomes a smarter than everyone vigilante after his beautiful, pregnant wife (Kareena Kapoor Khan in a cameo) dies in a building collapse. When he batters the criminal builder businessman Patil and breaks tons of furniture out of frustration, I suppose he finds his calling. Surviving a near butchering, Gabbar returns to reform; even as news outlets go into frenzy. Somewhere amidst this all, he also helps Shruti (Shruti Hassan), a bimbo lawyer who loves Google, during an emergency delivery; and as is common to south Indian remakes, Shruti falls for Aditya. In delivering justice from a corrupt private hospital, Gabbar accidentally reconnects with his bête noir, Patil, and thus ensues a revenge fest. All this while, fat, corrupt policemen and a top CBI cop assisted by a smart constable fruitlessly chase Gabbar.

You get the picture; this film’s narration is a mess. It’s staccato. It is also faulty because of its unrefined execution. Granted, the plot has heart. All vigilante films have potential, particularly while battling the hydra headed corruption monster. But vigilantes need to be convincing in both motive & manner. Add to that, reinforcement of tragedies & violence with a deafening background score & over acting, and the film does not sustain interest even as a mass entertainer. The director seems to have been so focused on ear splitting action scenes that consistency & relatability took a back seat. There is a strange reiteration in the film by its villain, claiming, ‘I am a brand!’ Wonder how that is relevant to it’s plot? It does not work. For that matter, why use ‘Gabbar’ as a name so superficially?
Akshay Kumar looks suave with his bearded look but seems not in best form with his acting. While the action star has said that he hopes to inspire a fight against corruption with this film, it actually seems like he was fighting disinterest while acting in it. Shruti Hassan is inconsequential, and Chitrangada Singh’s item number with a cheap top angle is plain embarrassing. At times, ‘Gabbar is Back’ amuses accidentally; with the bad acting that it’s villain and supporting cast deliver. Sidekicks that turn into human punching bags in this film step out straight from a modern day ‘Alif Laila’. Sunil Grover delivers the only decent performance here as the ambitious, smart constable.
But the worst bit are the dialogues; corny & completely hilarious, even if unintentionally so!
With an anti corruption theme, and with mass entertainers often getting takers, this film might do well at the box office. But for anyone seeking a decent, entertaining watch, ‘ Gabbar is Back’ will come across as an indifferent reference to Bollywood’s most iconic villain.


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