Directed by : Rohit Shetty
Produced by : Gauri Khan, Ronnie Screwvala, Siddharth Roy Kapur
Starring : Deepika Padukone, Shahrukh Khan
Studio : Red Chillies Entertainment
Bollywood and Festivals have an uncanny relationship with each other; over the years we have seen some of the all time Blockbusters in Hindi Cinema released during festivals. From 3 Idiots to DDLJ and the recent Ek tha Tiger, all have released during the festive season. Nowdays, Bollywood producers and directors realise this as a cash cow and try to cash in on this trend.
For the past 4 years, Salman Khan and Eid have been synonymous with each other; with movies like Dabangg, Bodyguard, Wanted and last year’s highest grosser Ek the Tiger, Salman has made the holy day his own.
This year too a Khan’s film has released this Eid, this time Salman’s arch rival or I must say foe turned friend Shah Rukh Khan is coming with this latest venture ‘Chennai Express’.
Its after a very long time that Shah Rukh Khan is working in a comedy, with a director he hasnt worked with before; I always had a complaint with him that he never experiments working with new people, its always the Chopras, Karan Johar and the people of his clan. He has come out of his comfort zone this time.
Rohit Shetty is also working with a new actor; having worked ith Ajay Devgan in the past, he too comes out of his comfort zone.Riding on the success of back to back 100 crore plus films alas Singham and Bol Bachchan, Three’s a charm?? Lets find out.
I had very little expectations from the movie in terms of a cinematic point of view. I have always believed; there is nothing as films for the classes and films for the masses. A good entertaining film would be liked by all; irrespective of being a mass audience or a class.
Rohit Shetty and his brand of a Cinema has some patent elements in all his ventures: Blowing Up Cars, Lots of Action with some Slapstick over the stop Comedy.
With Chennai Express; its these strengths of the ace director that turn into weakness. The posters may suggest its a Rohit Shetty film, but on watching it, one may tend to wonder? The comedy nor the action which are the comfort zone of the director falls flat throughout the film.
The basic problem here is, like most of the movies today is the Story. The director and the actor have tried to tell a shallow and weak story on a large canvas, with a mighty star cast, peppy music and never seen before marketing even the name of Rajnikanth is used to attract the audiences, but nothing helps to save this one.
Deepika Padukone has come along way from her wooden performance in her debut ‘Om Shanti Om’; she is the star of the show, her performance is good in certain parts, but her South Indian accent annoys after a time, Shah Rukh Khan is back to what he does best; wooing the leading lady, fighting the bad guys, convincing their fathers and stretching his arms in love; however he tries too hard, he acts flashy, zanzy and coy throughout the film. He tries to do a Raj of DDLJ or Rahul of Dil to Pagal Hai, uncharacteristically his screen name here too is Rahul but he fails to create the charm of the old. The supporting actors aren’t very impressive either. Sathyaraj as Durgeshwara Azhagusundaram;Deepika’s father does a good job.
With so much money spent on marketing, a little extra on the script and story would have helped. The writing isn’t great either, it fails to create the magic of any Rohit Shetty’s previous outings not that Golmaal 2 or 3 for that matter were great cinema but they brought a smile, and was funny to say the least. Many of the dialogues and punchlines are in Tamil which may tick off the Hindi speaking audience. The back of the hand jokes on South Indians is funny at times but too stretched after a while. Together the pair’s camaraderie on the celluloid results in funny situations and makes their chemistry more compelling . There are a few clichés such as the repetition of ‘Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge’ scenes and the lines that we have heard SRK speaking in his popular films which seem forced rather than synced through.
The music is nice, catchy,peppy but nothing that would stay with you for long. Songs like ‘Kashmir Main Tu Kanyakumari’ could have been skipped. If we think from the film maker’s perspective, the so-called unwanted songs we are talking about would have been added with the idea of putting more depth to the romance angle of the film.Lungi Dance is catchy, nonsensical but would be a hit in clubs.
Overall, Chennai Express is a beautiful looking dish with all the garnishing but is tasteless. It has had a bumper opening and gone on to break records, however as a cinematic experience, its all glitter no gold!!! If you are a Die hard Shah Rukh Fan, go catch this one otherwise it’s best to miss this train.