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Upperstall Review



Official Site

Action Replayy


Hindi, Drama, 2010, Color

Bunty (Aditya Roy Kapoor) loves his girlfriend Tanya but runs a mile whenever she mentions marriage. His phobia with matrimony stems from his parents Kishen (Akshay Kumar) and Mala's (Aishwarya Rai) acrimonious marriage. But now Bunty is in a fix. Tanya's grandfather, Professor Anthony Gonsalves (Randhir Kapoor), as given him an ultimatum - get married to Tanya or stop seeing her. Bunty knows that unless he does something fast, his dreams of living happily ever after with Tanya will bite the dust. As Bunty's surprise party for his parent's 35th wedding anniversary deteriorates into yet another explosive fight between Kishen and Mala; he decides to turn back the clock and rewrite Kishen and Mala's destiny and alter their disastrous arranged marriage into a romantic affair of the hearts. And how does he do that? By stealing the professor's time machine to travel back in time! To a time when Kishen and Mala were not married...To a time when Kishen's father Rai Bahadur (Om Puri) and Mala's mother, Bholi Devi (Kirron Kher) were sworn enemies...To a time when his father Kishen was certified nerd, bullied merciless by his father...To a time when his tomboyish mother couldn't stand the sight of his father and took great pleasure in ragging him silly...

Even a few smile inducing moments from Akshay Kumar fail to rescue Action Replayy. The film simply fails to come to life, very few gags actually work and it is just too tackily and unimaginatively put together.

The opening sequences prepare you for the bumpy viewing as they often make you cringe and things don't get better as the film enters Back to the Future territory (even if the film pays homage to its stagey origin - the Gujarati play Action Replay). A pity, because the film had great scope here to have fun and develop the romance between the nerd and the tomboy. But none of the scenes are developed properly, characters come and go randomly, most gags fall flat, dialogue, by and large, is not smart or witty enough etc, etc, etc... A case in mind is the playback sequence. And we're not even going into the logic of Akshay being right next to Ash where he's just meant to be moving his lips and she doesn't make out he's taking her for a ride.

Still, Akshay Kumar tries gamely to carry the film through but finally the burden is just too heavy and gets to him. He gives the film whatever moments it has and though it almost seems like Jaan-E-Mann revisited, no one can quite play a nerd or give that goofy grin quite like him. However, he is looking his age now and is far too old for the kind of comic roles he is taking on. That they are pitched so loud makes it worse. Aishwarya Rai is weak in comparison and expecting her to act is still expecting a bit much, and her comic timing is way off. Aditya Roy Kapoor is unable to carry his share of the load and rest of the cast simply wasted without making any impact whatsoever. It's sad to see Om Puri and Kirron Kher utilized so badly.

Technicalities really are not worth talking about in a film like this becasue they get no scope. The camera functions little more than a recording device to film the gags or takes in wide frames for you to admire all that the art department has gathered to give 'production value' in the shot. The production design fails to create the engaging 70s retro look and goes overboard with colours in a manner that make even Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baaje seem more staid and monochrome in comparison. At least the makers could have watched That 70s Show if nothing else to deal with the period better. And the less said about the tacky time machine the better. An occasional spark in the background score is just about the only high in the entire sound design. Pritam's music is very so-so and in spite of Zor ka Jhatka, the catchiest composition in the film, the film lacks a true chartbuster. That the song picturisations are lack-lustre doesn't help either. Oh...and the make-up for Akshay and Ash in their old avatars is simply disastrous. Couldn't care have been taken here for such a big-budget Bollywood film???

All in all, if one got a chance to visit the past like Aditya Roy Kapoor does, one would go back and do something far more worthwhile with one's life rather than spend the 2 hours wasted on watching Action Replayy.

Upperstall review by: Karan Bali aka TheThirdMan




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