|Name of the Film
||Mustafa, Kiara Advani
||2 Hours 28 Minute
||17 March 2017
Few seconds into the film and we get treated to the lusher of North India where we see Sarah Thapar (Kiara Advani) indulging in some welfare work at an orphanage. The next moment, the high-heeled lady is rushing past the roads off the valleys in her car only to get it slip over an oil spill. But for the savior that she is, she stops another car from meeting the same fate. Turns out the man is a Prince Charming called Ransh (Mustafa) who now only has eyes for Ms. Thapar, who has already conquered the driving seat of his car while catching a lift from him to reach her hostel?
The brain boggles at the thought of films like these that really get written? And then shot and also publicized and head to hit the theaters. Does no one with an ounce of objectivity occur at any point? Ransh (Mustafa) is a machine (the heroine’s words, not ours), who has no heart. He is constrained to fall in love with girls, then made to kill them and rob their money. Sarah (Advani) becomes his victim and but is soon resurrected to take down her sly lover while he’s on his next hunt. Her guardian? The twin brother of a friendzoned Romeo who dies at the arms of Ransh earlier. If the existential dilemma hasn’t set in yet, give it time. Two hours and 28 minutes, to be accurate. The lack of any kind of distinction is the most astounding piece here. If a boy is in love, he will write love letters in blood; if a girl is upset, she will relax by the river and cry endlessly; everything is fitted out (in cringe-worthy dialogue) and then marked and highlighted, should people miss the point. Songs show up as if they’re developing a schedule and can’t blow the deadline.
How is this happening from the same directors who pulled off taut thrillers continuously the early ‘00s? Like Baazigar, the Abbas-Mustan film that sealed the deal for Shah Rukh Khan. They have improved the same structure as a launch vehicle for Mustafa, but have overlooked that little depends on the vehicle and a lot is defined by the man behind the wheel. And Mustafa, suspiciously invested by obviously less talented is just not that guy. Kiara Advani is almost absolutely binge-watching Deepika Padukone films and picking up nuances of her dialogue delivery and appearances. There’s a spooky Padukone vibe about the way Advani steps, talks, and stares. This machine has been put together without any manual and starts dropping apart as soon as it is turned on.
The second half allows director duo Abbas-Mustan to deliver on their trademarked twists: characters shed their hidden identities; sliding doors expose walk-in closets stacked with US dollars and one learns that the various accidents were actually murders. But the dialogue seems like reconsideration: 'Tie khatam ho Jaye gi toh ap ka time khatam ho Jaye Ga,' says the lead to someone swinging by his tie from a skyscraper. 'Main Juliet ki Tarah tumhe feel Karna Chahta hoon,' and 'First love burns the brightest,' are lines that actually pull on a woman here. Tiresome metaphors like you’re as useless as a photo frame placed on a piano that no one sees at and spooky promises like 'I will smudge your lipstick but never let your kajal flow’ make you question if willfully watching this movie costs to self-harm. The movie also features a character who sits on showing evidence that could pin the movie's antihero only because he’s a commando and wanted to defeat him by himself.
Why To Watch –
Nothing, except the wonderful locations at which this film has been shot. So kudos to the brand producer(s) for selecting the most pleasant locales. Johnny Lever is the only saving mercy of this disaster. And he has a 'friendly appearance' in the movie if you want. Ronit Roy who provides a solid performance, despite playing a senseless character.