Movie review: 'Dabangg 2' - Kung fu Pandey in action
Director: Arbaaz Khan
Cast: Salman Khan, Sonakshi Sinha, Vinod Khanna, Prakash Raj
Scene 1: Chulbul confronts goondas in godown, tosses a few dialogues, flies in the air, beats them up. Few dialogues more.
Scene 2: Chulbul plays happy families with wife Rajjo (Sonakshi Sinha), stepfather Prajapati Pandey (Vinod Khanna, looking very very old) and brother Makkhi (director Arbaaz)
Chulbul smooths his moustache, flexes his muscles, wriggles around. It’s time for a song.
Scene 3: Chulbul confronts smugglers/dacoits, tosses a few dialogues, flies in the air, beats them to a pulp. Few dialogues more.
Scene 4: Chulbul ribs a few colleagues, donates money, teases his father, brother and wife. Wife gets angry, time for a song.
This scenario repeats itself over and over till you start wondering where all the impressive heroic character building of Chulbul is leading. Answer is nowhere. High on dialogue and drama but low, low, low on plot. Sticking strictly to a frame by frame template of its earlier instalment, Dabang 2 turns out to be more of an episodic telling of the life and exploits of its protagonist Chulbul Pandey. Basically Kung Fu Pandey has now reconciled wit his stepfather and brother and has been newly transferred to Kanpur, the domain of gangster turned politician Bachcha Bhaiyya (Prakash Raj). True to his nature, Chulbul soon ends up taking pangas with Bachcha’s gang. Of course, there is no doubt that Chulbul will subdue and defeat Bachcha. Chulbul, after all, can fling himself up in the air, and turn and run at the speed of light and can kill a man in a single punch.
In Dabang 2, Chulbul has gained even more superheroic powers and attitude (and a wee bit of weight) than before and demonstrates all this in great detail through the film’s length.
The 'Makkhi' track was entirely superfluous; but that strange almost real-life scene, where Chulbul watches with pride as Makkhi starts taking responsibility, is quite touching. Well, Arbaaz can rest assured that he has made a promising debut. However, he is aided by Dilip Shukla’s writing (consistent in its wry humour and dhaba milieu in both the films) which makes Chulbul Pandey the hero he is.
It’s problematic of course that the hero is an openly corrupt police officer, although committed to his own strange convoluted form of social justice, and a complete chauvinist at that. It’s also problematic that the choreography of 'Fevicol' and 'Pandeyji Seeti', although striking, would make even 'Munni' hide in self-conscious shame. Prakash Raj and Deepak Dobriyal, two of our most interesting actors, are completely wasted in lackluster roles.
However, apna Salman returns in top form and cheer and really, that’s what will delight diehard fans.