Sajid-Wajid and Lalit Pandit
Faiz Anwar, Lalit Pandit and Jalees Sherwani
Salman Khan, Sonakshi Sinha, (Introducing), Arbaaz Khan, Sonu Sood, Vinod Khanna, Dimple Kapadia, Mahesh Manjrekar and Om Puri
Dabangg Movie Review
September 24, 2010 04:31:43 PM IST By Pankaj Sabnani, Bollywood Trade News Network
It's been a while since we've seen a total 'paisa wasool film, which is high on the 'entertainment' value with some 'seeti maar' dialogues and action. Salman Khan's WANTED (2009) was one such film. This year, Milan Luthria's ONCE UPON A TIME IN MUMBAAI recreated that magic to a great extent.
From its promos, DABANGG seemed to be another such film to be added to that list. You enter the cinema hall hoping to see a full-on action film with some dhasu dialogues. Alas, only to be saddened.
The story is hackneyed. But then you don't really expect a great one out of such a film, anyway. However, the film disappoints. It's exaggerated, flimsy, and relies mainly on the charisma of its lead to deliver.
There aren't many action sequences. There's not much comedy. Did we hear you ask 'then what's there in it'? Well, we are still trying to figure that out.
It starts off impressively with the introduction fight scene of Chulbul Pandey (Salman Khan), breaking a door and beating goons left, right and centre in a stylised action sequence. And you want to see more and more of him. However, the excitement is short lived as the tempo of the film drops after the initial few minutes.
While little happens in taking the story ahead in the first half, the brewing romance between Chulbul and Rajo (Sonakshi Sinha) is refreshing. Chulbul doesn't mind 'paying Rs 500 just to speak with Rajo for a few minutes'. But it's a complete downhill from there.
DABANGG is a story of Chulbul Pandey aka Robinhood Pandey set in Laalgurj, Uttar Pradesh. He's corrupt but has a 'big heart'. He bashes up fraudulent politicians, goons, loots their money but doesn't think twice in helping the poor and needy.
Chulbul also has a troubled past. Prajapati Pandey (Vinod Khanna) is his stepfather who favours his own blood and Chulbul's stepbrother, Makhanchan urf Makhi (Arbaaz Khan).
Our cop here makes enemies out of Cheddi Singh (Sonu Sood), a scheming politician who indulges in malicious activities. Cheddi's copious ways to get knock Chulbul out go in vain. In the midst of all this, Chulbul develops feelings for Rajo, a beautiful young gaon ki chori.
So the question is, does DABANGG entertain? Yes, but only in handful portions. The few action sequences are impressive and so are some dialogues. The way Salman's body is revealed in the climax is cheesy; nevertheless, it makes you smile.
The sub-plots don't have much merit. Many redundant sequences are forcefully added to keep the film running. Like the one where Makhi beats a worker only to face the wrath of Chulbul or Rajo's father (Mahesh Manjrekar) dying abruptly. It has a honeymoon portion just to incorporate the foreign locations. The second half drags on and on.
Debutante director Abhinav Kashyap has clearly tried to cash in on the success of WANTED (even uses its caller tune). But to little avail. It looks a film meant only for B-centres.
Sajid-Wajid music is mediocre barring Tere Mast Mast Do Nain and Munni (composed by Lalit Pandit). Mahesh Limaye's cinematography is good. Some dialogues are whistle and clap worthy.
Salman Khan is in his element. It's one of his finest performances till date. He carries the film on his shoulders with ease. Sonakshi Sinha makes a confident debut. She's clearly a talent to watch out for. Arbaaz Khan is weak. Sonu Sood is wasted and lacks the histrionics of a villain. In fact, he makes a joker out of the villain. Vinod Khanna is decent. In the Munni track, Malaika Arora Khan lacks grace that she exuded in Chaiya Chaiya from DIL SE or Kaal Dhamaal from KAAL.
DABANGG doesn't hit you with a 'bang'. Watch it only if you are an ardent Salman Khan fan. It's his character that works, not the film.