Reviewed By Abhishek Bandekar
Posted 07/12/05 18:36:22

"Dus Bahaane to not watch this film!"
2 stars (Pretty Bad)

I’m really sorry, but with a title and a credits song like that, I couldn’t resist the temptation of succumbing to a corny caption. I had actually come up with the heading even before I’d seen the film. To Watch or Not To Watch was the question. And that has been answered. So here are the ten excuses to keep you as far away from this failure of catastrophic proportions!

01) The movie desperately tries to be Hollywoodish on all counts. Stupid jump-cuts, frames that minimize into nothingness; everything that you can imagine has been employed to give the movie a slick feel. But style without substance is like a silicone implant that doesn’t feel real! The funniest attempt is incorporating fight sequences a la ‘The Matrix’. Yeah right, I’m paying money to see Shilpa Shetty suspended in air while delivering a knock-out kick! Puhleese!

02) In spite its apparent desire to be cool it commits the uncool mistake of putting in a typical sagaai song with a sad bhaiyya and a sadder saiyya! And the song gets even more embarrassing when Sanjay Dutt fakes anger but joins in the dance anyway. Zayed Khan’s visible underwear inside his transparent pajama(along with his poor acting skills) is also something I was not prepared for when I bought my ticket!

03) Ah, Suniel Shetty! The actor was never good to begin with, and with an added ‘e’ to his name, he isn’t any better either! You might have heard of trigger-happy cops but Suniel plays a slap-happy cop; ever heard of that before. You have to see it to believe it(No, no, no…I’m not recommending this film!)

04) Shilpa Shetty in mid-air…Shilpa Shetty kicking ass…Shilpa Shetty as a tough-as-nails Special Operations Officer for the Anti-Terrorist Cell(ATC)…Shilpa Shetty with a tattoo just above her tailbone!...Shilpa Shetty dollied up a tad too much for an officer…Shilpa Shetty looking straight out of a ramp…see how it all goes downhill!

05) The director strives for authenticity. But the ATC headquarters is too stagy and the Home Minister’s Office looks like a child’s sketch while a warehouse has snazzier lighting than a discotheque. Listen carefully to the characters speak in the background at the ATC mouthing some pretty-sounding gibberish! Also, the timeline effect doesn’t build up any tension at all.

06) A clever twist pre-climax. For a moment I thought, now that’s something I can recommend this movie for. But hold on…I’ve seen this before…right, in the brilliant thriller from Bryan Singer ‘The Usual Suspects’! So, if you’ve seen that film you know what I mean!

07) If a deaf man were taken to a screening of ‘Dus’, I’m sure he’d regain his hearing ability. The background music is so jarringly loud that I had to take an aspirin during the movie itself. Ranjit Barot has had better days…Aks!

08) You know what. Esha Deol is getting better…better at acting worse! Just when I thought she couldn’t go any lower, she surprises me with her performance in this movie. Her presence even rubs on the usually reliable Raima Sen who is equally appalling and irritating!

09) This is not a spoiler, don’t worry. But I believe that once a movie establishes a neat twist is should get over as soon as possible without actually allowing you to think about it and thereby blow the moment. ‘Dus’ does just the opposite. After the twist, the narrative trudges to a long-winding climax that challenges absurdity!

10) It is simply unacceptable to take the emerging cool Abhishek Bachchan and the established suave Sanjay Dutt in one movie and make it shabby. When you add the sexy Shilpa Shetty to the mix, you expect even more. Plus, there’s Pankaj Kapur! Just not acceptable!

Having determined the minuses of the film, let me divulge you the positive aspects as well. There aren’t many, but they are. For starters, the title track is literally contagious. You cannot help but tap your feet to it. But you don’t need to go to a multiplex for that, you can hear it on your music system too. Go you should if you want to see Abhishek getting stronger with each portrayal. It is the Sarkar-effect which has prompted the distributors to publicize Abhishek more than the rest of the cast!

Sanjay Dutt is efficient in a dull role. And it’s a treat to watch Pankaj Kapur in a performance that is not only reminiscent of Govinda(and this is a compliment) but also seems to be written with Govinda in mind! Other than that ‘Dus’ doesn’t give many reasons to advise it.

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