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FILM REVIEW: Shamshera

 Tread with caution Starring: Sanjay Dutt, Ranbir Kapoor, Vaani Kapoor, Iravati Harshe, Ronit Bose Roy Rating: 2 stars (one each for Ran...

 Tread with caution

Starring: Sanjay Dutt, Ranbir Kapoor, Vaani Kapoor, Iravati Harshe, Ronit Bose Roy

Rating: 2 stars (one each for Ranbir and cinematography)

Director Karan Malhotra seems to have a Manmohan Desai fixation. Shamshera has ample proof of this as he generously lifts portions of the superhit director’s ideas from Dharam-Veer, Mard, and Toofan to create a cinematic mess. The end result is a script that is outdated and moth-eaten. Maybe had he just created old wine in a new bottle it could have worked!

Also, the idea of a child growing up and coming back after 25 years is like films of the past. Anyway, Karan has tried hard to make a full-on masala film, but somewhere down the line, he falters. The saving grace is Ranbir Kapoor- his first double role - father and son (again a done-to-death theme of the films of the 70s and 80s) as Shamshera and Balli. The basic premise remains the same – revenge which is oh so very predictable!

 The Khamerans are banished by the residents of Kaza owing to the former’s lower caste status. With no option left, they turn into plunderers a la Thugs of Hindostan, thus making life hell for the residents of Kaza who approach the British Government to save them from the leader of the Khamera gang -Shamshera. The British give responsibility to the maniacal and wily Daroga Shuddh Singh who asks Shamshera and his people to surrender only to enslave them in the Kaza fortress. When Shamshera retaliates he is again tricked into taking an offer by Shuddh Singh that he should give 5000 grams of gold for their freedom. Shamshera is killed before finding a secret tunnel that would have led them to the Azad river. Cut to 25 years later, Shamshera’s son Balli finds out the truth and seeks to avenge his father.

Sanjay Dutt as Shuddha Singh is let down by poor writing. He goes overboard (whether it was deliberate or forced is yet to be known) and tries hard like the loud villains of the 70s and 80s. Vaani Kapoor as Balli’s love interest Sona looks gorgeous. But again because of poor writing, her performance is a big letdown. Ronit Bose Roy as Pir Baba, Shamshera’s close aide is wasted. Iravati Harshe as Shamshera’s wife and Balli’s mother leaves an impact.

Cinematography by Anay Goswami is another highlight, but music by Mithoon is a huge disappointment with only the title track being just about okay.

Another colossal disappointment from the YRF studio after Samrat Prithviraj. Aditya Chopra should now himself look into scripts to give us something more worthwhile.


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