Q: How does one review a Salman Khan movie really?
A: One does not. One reviews the experience. And boy, did I have one! First Day First Show at one of the most popular single screens in Bombay – Gaiety.
Firstly, there was a sea of people at the venue and even getting in was like trying to get into a dabba of a local train! And the crowd was so pumped up that even the censor certificate of the movie got louder cheers, hoots and whistles than any other hero’s money shot. So you can imagine what happened at our hero’s entry! It was so loud that I didn’t catch any dialogue whatsoever over the crazy whistling and screaming. Truly amazing!
Coming to the movie itself, Ek Tha Tiger has quite a simple story – about a spy who falls in love and decides to abandon everything to complete his love story.
The first half is mainly full of the romance between the lead pair sandwiched between a couple of very good action setpieces. Must say, I didn’t expect a subtle romance in such a movie with humor mainly relying on PJs & dialogue – a welcome relief from the usual slapstick we have been getting in recent times.
It’s the second half where things get into high gear with our lead pair deciding to go baaghi against one and all. The action is really well choreographed and the surprise factor here is that Kat gets to punch and kick as much as Bhai does! And the audience sure seemed to be loving it! Can’t remember the last time in a hindi movie where the heroine goes back to save the hero! Very cool!
The music is a bit of a letdown for such a big film. The tracks are passable & forgettable barring Mashallah which comes right at the end.
Katrina has really improved and this is probably her best performance to date thanks to a meaty role that lets her laugh, fight, dance and look terrific all the while doing it.
And finally – apna hero Salman Khan! Such a welcome change to see him actually try! He doesn’t mumble nor sleepwalk though the role, tries hard to emote and credit to the director for extracting this out of him and getting him to do such a physical role (when it’s not the body double we see).
Another plus for me was that the movie never assaults or insults your senses or becomes cheap or vulgar. It’s actually watchable with the family. The letdown comes in the form of a lack of punchy dialogues that you normally expect in this kind of a film. Also the action portions could have been a bit longer. At a crisp 2 hrs 10, I could have used another 10-15 minutes of “Bhaigiri”.
Must add here that the climatic action shot is my most favorite ‘filmy’ moment of the year beating the Hulk’s “My secret is.. that I’m always angry” in The Avengers. Needless to say the crowd went absolutely berserk when it happened and it was the highpoint of the experience!
Credit to director Kabir Khan for creating a masala entertainer without falling into the realms of absurdity and striking a sort of balance between a class & mass film.
A bit slow in parts it may be, but on the whole, Ek Tha Tiger is an entertaining watch that should be experienced in a packed audi – preferably a single screen!
My score: 7.5 on 10 (an extra .5 for the experience of watching it in a deafening single screen)
- Ek Tha Tiger
- Running time: 130 mins approx
- Starring: Salman Khan & Katrina Kaif
- Directed by: Kabir Khan