Planet Bollywood
Bang Bang
Producer: Fox Star Studios
Director: Siddharth Raj Anand
Starring: Hrithik Roshan, Katrina Kaif, Danny Denzongpa, Jaaved Jaffrey
Music: Vishal–Shekhar
Lyrics: Vishal Dadlani, Anvita Dutt Guptan, Kumaar
Genre: Action, Thriller
Recommended Audience: General
Film Released on: 02 October 2014
Reviewed by: Anish Mohanty  - Rating: 7.0 / 10
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Public Rating Average: 5.1 / 10 (rated by 411 viewers)
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Apart from being the official remake of the 2010 Hollywood blockbuster ‘Knight and Day’, ‘Bang Bang!’ also enjoys the distinction of being one of the costliest films to be made in India. While the distributors of ‘Knight and Day’, Fox Star Studios have produced the Hindi version, the directorial reins have been picked up by Siddharth Anand, who has earlier helmed romantic dramas/ comedies like ‘Salaam Namaste’, ‘Tara Rum Pum’, ‘Bachna Ae Haseeno’ and ‘Anjaana Anjaani’. The adapted screenplay has been credited to heavy weights like Sujoy Ghosh and Suresh Nair. With the promotional activities pitching the film as a high octane action thriller and keeping in mind the factors stated earlier, one expects the film to set a new benchmark for actions films in India.

The film opens with Officer Viren Nanda (Jimmy Sheirgill) from the Indian army meeting underworld kingpin Omar Zafar in a high-security prison in Britain. Moments later, his aide Hamid Gul (Jaaved Jaaferi) with a group of men breaks into the prison and helps Omar escape. Viren is killed in the process. Omar plans to steal the Kohinoor diamond, placed under high security in London. Rajveer (Hrithik Roshan) manages to steal the diamond and then, meets Hamid’s men to hand over the diamond to them, in exchange of millions of dollars. Surprisingly, Rajveer plays foul with them and runs away with the diamond. He comes across Harleen Sahni (Katrina Kaif), a bank receptionist who mistakes him for somebody else. By the time, Harleen realizes her mistake, she, involuntarily, gets embroiled in a chase that spans across several continents.

After watching ‘Knight and Day’, a couple of years ago, I felt the film’s screenplay was anything but exciting. With names like Sujoy Ghosh and Suresh Nair attached to ‘Bang Bang!’, I was hoping that this film would at least boast of a better screenplay. Sadly, that does not happen. The writers have borrowed all the key plot points from the original and they have just about made some minor changes for the film to cater to the tastes of the masses in India. As a result, we have Harleen’s grandmother pestering her to get herself a boy friend and settle down in life. Then, there are some characters who are introduced to add some humour to the otherwise serious tenor of the film. Also, the jingoistic flavor is much more evident here than in the original film. Nothing wrong with that. In fact, some of these additions serve their purpose well.

However, the writers could have experimented a lot more with the original screenplay but what one sees is some lazy writing on display. The twists and turns, even for those who have not seen the original, would come across as very generic and are the ones that you will probably guess a mile away. The main antagonist’s part, played by Danny Denzongpa, has been poorly written. There is no detailing and the character remains absent for a long duration in the film. The dialogues (Abbas Tyrewala), thankfully, are devoid of the over the top dialogues you get to hear in most of the Hindi actioners these days. They are realistic and entertaining at the same time.

The film’s real hero, undoubtedly, is director Siddharth Anand, who helps the film rise above an ordinary script. It’s his treatment of the written material that makes all the difference. A lot of people had apprehensions as to whether someone whose filmography includes only romantic dramas/ comedies could pull of an action film. Well, Siddharth silences his detractors by making a film which boasts of some of the finest action sequences one has seen in a Hindi film. The action sequences have been brilliantly executed by Hollywood action director Andy Armstrong. Not just the action sequence, but the film, as a whole, is a visual splendour all the way. Despite being saddled with an average script, Siddharth puts his best foot forward as a director and comes out with flying colours. It is to his credit that you don’t feel bored or jaded for a moment. Music (Vishal Shekhar) is fairly good but the songs pale in comparison with Salim Sulaiman’s superlative background score. The choreography (Bosco-Caesar and Ahmed Khan) of the songs is very good.

Hrithik Roshan’s character exudes a lot of heroism and even as the actor has played many larger than life characters in the past, one does not mind, as he is in terrific form, as always. Be it the action sequences or the lighter moments, he pulls all of them very well. His dance moves in ‘Tu Meri’ and the title song will take your breath away. It’s literally impossible to take your eyes off him as he lights up the screen with his exuberant energy.

Katrina Kaif looks adorable playing the sweet and innocent Harleen. She does well in the action sequences. Danny Denzongpa, despite playing a poorly sketched character, is excellent. Though, Jaaved Jaaferi ‘s role has been credited as ‘guest appearance’, you wish to see more of him as his character is very relevant to the plot and he or rather the character he played should have been given more screen time. Kanwaljit Singh and Deepti Naval are barely there. Jimmy Sheirgill makes an impact with his cameo appearance.

Notwithstanding the ordinary screenplay, Siddharth Anand’s terrific direction and some stylized action pieces make ‘Bang Bang!’ a very entertaining affair. The film raises the bar for action flicks in India and hopefully, the next big ticket action film that comes around will have a better screenplay. Till that happens, feast your eyes on ‘Bang Bang!’

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