With every Salman Khan film comes the promise to be thoroughly entertained. Be it through his impeccable comic timing, his unique style of dancing or his perfectly toned body which never fails to make girls swoon and guys envious. Dabangg 2 was no different. He came, we saw, he conquered. While the first film exceeded expectations — becoming the biggest hit Hindi cinema has ever seen — the sequel was expected to be just as good, if not better.
Dabangg 2, directed by Arbaaz Khan, tells the story of corrupt, but good-natured cop, Chulbul Pandey (Salman Khan), who has recently been transferred to Kanpur, has patched up with his stepfather, Prajapati (Vinod Khanna) and half-brother, Makkhi (Arbaaz Khan), and now has a new aim: to eradicate the fresh terror over society, Bacha Bhaiya (Prakash Raj) and his brothers. With the hopes of getting elected into the local government, Bacha Bhaiya tries to avoid the threats by Chulbul, until his youngest brother gets killed by the cop’s own hands. The former then vows to terrorise Chulbul’s family to avenge for the death of his brother. Thus, he throws Rajjo (Sonakshi Sinha), Chulbul’s wife down the temple stairs, causing her to have a miscarriage. In turn, the ordinarily humorous policeman seeks revenge and saves the day by killing Bacha Bhaiya and his accomplices. Sound familiar?
- Salman Khan. The film is all about him. Corrupt, fearless and funny, Chulbul Pandey has become a character that promises to deliver. He also does all of the stunts in the film himself, given that he’s lost quite a bit of weight, which was a treat after Ek Tha Tiger. You know he’s a superstar when the whistles and cheers never stop. Step aside, Vidya Balan; now, this is entertainment.
- Deepak Dobriyal. In the role of Bacha Bhaiya’s youngest brother and the persistent rogue, he stands out with some rather witty one-liners. Unfortunately, he’s killed off just before the interval, handing over the screen to Prakash Raj, who slightly disappoints as a mere nostril-flaring and eye-bulging villain.
- The music. Sajid-Wajid manage to live up to the standards they set with the music of the first film. For every song in Dabangg, there’s almost a recycled tune in this film. Despite Fevicol Se not gaining as much popularity as Munni Badnaam Hui, it still manages to stand out as one of the good item songs of the year.
- Malaika Arora Khan. She is, without a doubt, the highlight of the film. The only letdown is that she doesn’t get an entire song to herself.
- The story. Predictable and similar to the first film, the sequel doesn’t provide anything fresh for the audience. In short, a pale imitation of Dabangg.
- The direction. Abhinav Kashyap was definitely missed. As successful a producer Arbaaz Khan might have become after Dabangg, there is unfortunately no potential or hope for him as a director. For the third film, if ever, I suggest he hand over the baton to somebody else.
- The dialogues. While the first film had an abundance of memorable dialogues and one-liners, the second was lacking in that respective department. None of the dialogues stayed with the audience after the film. In addition, some of them were only humorous if they were reflected from Dabangg.
- Kareena Kapoor Khan. She might be a Khan now, but she’s no Malaika Arora. And is it just me, or has she played a prostitute far too many times?
With a generous 2.5 out of 5, Dabangg 2 is neither a classic nor a masterpiece, unlike is predecessor. Simply put, it’s more or less a replica or a wannabe of the first film and falls short of being fresh; it doesn’t bore nor leave you wanting more. A decent way to spend your Christmas with the family if you’re looking for a leave-your-brains-at-home kind of a comedy.
The last word:
Any film starring Salman Khan without at least one shirtless scene is not a Salman Khan film worth watching. He bares, and reminds you why he is the original body-builder of Bollywood. Ripped, toned and at 46, he could give anyone a run for their money.