Vijay Krishna Acharya, successful director of the FLOP movie Tashan (either came forward or was approached) directed this film. He is a prominent name in the list of directors who are obsessed with slow-mos, hypermasculinity, exaggerated action sequences and female characters who are reduced to sex objects, who are there for the sake of getting male gaze.
Now back to the review.
The movie is about Sahir Khan (Aamir Khan AKA Mr. perfectionist) the big city creative thief who robs from one bank and one bank alone, Western Bank of Chicago! Why? Because his father Iqbal Haroon Khan (Jackie Shroff) was denied of a loan to conduct his dream circus because the manager didn’t like the great magic trick and all the acrobats, although his colleagues almost clapped. His solid reason for denying the loan for such a breathtaking show was simple: Iqbal Khan’s show did not have those tricks that involve half-naked women putting her hands inside the hippopotamus’ mouth. According to him, a typical circus show is stupid. His father, unable to bear all that embarrassment and too much debt, commits suicide. His son Sahir vows revenge! His father’s gone, but the bank is still alive, so he is going to kill the bank (And not the man who denied him the loan). Who cares if the bank of Chicago involves a lot of other people including the ones who liked his father’s show. But they were all forced to listen to their boss, so they should also be affected by the death of the bank. Many innocent rich or middle class or low-class people have put their money and other riches in the lockers because of their trust towards the people working in western bank of Chicago. But they chose the wrong bank and should have gone for the “honest” and “kind” ones. But many people benefitted from this “awesome” operation of Mr. Sahir. Like the beggar sitting in front of the WBC, and all the lucky ones who stood near it. They could get hundreds of dollars, falling from the sky. Who knows? There could be other wonderful people like thieves, murderers, rapists, cruel landlords etc. but does it matter? The bank has to die! Then within years, our dear protagonist turned antagonist brought the bank *this close* to complete collapse. Through that he developed several technological advancements, whether it’s the show or his looting gadgets.
For a robbery taking place in the United States of America, a country that is quite famous for the advanced weaponry and satellite visuals, the authority decided to hire a cop from India, just because they saw words written in Hindi on the walls after every robbery. What does he write? “Bank walo tumhari eisi ki taisi” God! Those words will come crashing into our minds. I got goose-bumps after reading it.There are many Hindi speakers in America including the gorgeous female cop Victoria. But still a film that features a hypermasculine villain requires an equal and opposite super cop. So, they called Jai Dixit (Abhishek Bachchan). He is a super cop, no he is THE super cop! What else do you call a man who could fly up in the air from a motorcycle and simply punch a goon in the stomach, send him flying at the same time? Who else could crash through the wall in an auto rickshaw? Rickshaws will be jammed if they are hit by a car, but if Mr. Dixit is driving it, then it becomes a super auto rickshaw! He flips it around on one (front) tire, allowing his side kick Ali Akbar (Uday Chopra) to dodge it just in time. He chases the goons across the slum, until the tires came loose! Don’t we just love Macho men? After seeing the superiority of Jai Dixit and his highly skilled partner Ali (keeping his womanizing and dull-witted attitude aside), the Western Bank of Chicago decides to hire them. How and when they did it? Who cares (again) the bank and their innocent customers will go down during this war between two men.
Then, of course, every circus AKA Dhoom movie requires a half-naked sexy lady in order to attract as many male audience members as possible. So enter the fully dressed Kamli AKA Aaliyah (Katrina Kaif) who begs Sahir for an audition to the great Indian circus show. He threatens to throw her out unless she does a 5-minute act that is soooo good that his attention is not deviated. How does she overcome such a daunting task? By pulling off her clothes during the acrobatic dance sequence. It is not the impossible back flips, twists and flexibility that earns her Sahir’s approval, but her milky body with immense sex appeal. Wow filmmakers, wow. If they had given her more time probably she will take off her underwear as well. Katrina Kaif is there for 20 minutes awesome minutes of four songs, a breathtakingly boring climax where she simply says “Sab teek ho jayga”, and for a kissing scene with Aamir Khan in the railway station. That’s it, after all, it is an action movie AKA man’s world. What else can women do other than to dance, sing and look pretty? Oh yes, be the villain’s weakness or fall in love with hero/villain and become a damsel in distress. Or, stand there with a poker face and do nothing. Or, she could be the Helen of Troy by being the major “turning point” and make the whole plan go down. So why should Kat go through a lot of stress with so much time that is 20 minutes on-screen? Bad idea! So just stay there, stay pretty or in distress and let the man do their work! Female Stereotype is our culture.
Then this is actually Aamir’s movie. It was his flashback, narration, character development, dance moves (that looked like he is dragging himself to do it) etc. Jai and Ali simply have their name in so as to name this movie “Dhoom”. And we have the “Dhoom theme” occasionally played among the other noisy background score. The best part is when Aamir and Abhishek come face to face with each other. The villain is only half the hero’s height.
The budget of the movie was 100 crores or maybe more and using that budget, the crew worked very hard to make the movie interesting with a lot of slow mo shots, even if it makes a person fall asleep. Sahir does the mission impossible 4 (Burj Khalifa) stunt. But there’a major difference, i.e. Hollywood has the fast version while Bollywood shows the exaggerated slow motion. Sahir can fly using his bike, change his bike into a boat and the boat back into a bike, his vehicle is water proof too. My god, criminals are that exposed to modern technological advancements than the cops there. That is why they hired the super cop Jai to solve the case and catch the thief. How does Jai do it? Usually, villains take the advantage of innocent people to get hold on the tough ones. Jai decided to do tit-for-tat against all the super villains. How does he that? Who cares? Then at the end, Jai was strapped to a roller coaster rail but Ali saved him just in time.
So if you enjoy such stuff and if you have the capacity to laugh out throughout the whole movie and during all those situations that involved a lot of macho men action, melodrama and the WildKat’s striptease, then definitely spend your precious money to see this. And who knows, the Yash Raj films will bring us more of such awesome entertainers to remember.
Disclaimer: this is a modified review that was first published in author’s personal blog.
Featured image: apnafilms.com