Thugs of Hindostan
Cast: Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan, Katrina Kaif, Fatima Sana Shaikh
Director: Vijay Krishna Acharya
What’s it about?
Set in the 1700s, Thugs of Hindostan is a fictional tale of royals who turn rebellious bandits after being dethroned by England’s East India Company.
The story of Thugs of Hindostan begins in a small town of North India called Raunakpur where the treacherous General Clive from the East India Company deviously conquers the last free kingdom by assassinating the king and his family. This sets the stage for rebels with a cause and a film with lots of action.
Scale wise, Thugs is every bit the big Diwali release that it sets out to be. There are big stars, bigger sets and massive visual effects mounted on a grand canvas.
Director Vijay Krishna, of course, brings in all the elements of a mass entertainer and to be honest, it works just fine up until the interval.
Aamir Khan plays this animated character named Firangi Malla, whose only religion is money. He rides a donkey, double crosses almost everyone and shoots wisecracks at any given opportunity. I found him quite over-the-top and I surely expect a lot more from an actor like him who is par excellence.
It is a delight to watch Amitabh Bachchan pack a punch with high octane action sequences and rich dialogues, but the weariness in his eyes is painful.
Katrina looks dropdead gorgeous, but has precious little to do besides sizzle onscreen with her perfect hourglass figure. Fatima Sana Shaikh gets a meaty author backed role that she performs with honesty.
However, all of them together cannot breathe much life into any of these characters simply because you cannot take them seriously. None of them don’t quite lift beyond the sloppy writing and exhausting length of the film, which runs close to 3 hours.
To its credit, Thugs does show quite a bit of potential in its first hour or so but the film gets progressively laborious as it inches toward a very predictable climax. The narrative is bogged down with plot twists that can be guessed from a mile away and caricature portrayals of characters.
Ajay Atul’s music falls woefully short for a film of this stature. The only song that will stay with you is ‘Sunaina Jaan Legi Kya’ for its peppy beats and breathtaking gyrations by Katrina.
Despite such a massive star cast, the real heroes of the film are its visual effects and cinematography. They alone transport you into the make believe world of the thugs.
So if you can manage your expectations well before you enter the cinema hall, then this film won’t feel like so much of a thug after all.
I am going with 2.5 stars.
- Ronak Kotecha