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Khel Khatam....

  • Yusuf Poonawala

    Yusuf Poonawala (50 DM Points)

    Desimartini | Updated - September 25, 2013 2:36 PM IST
    3.4DM (2166 ratings)

    Verdict - Style over substance

    PlayersWatch trailerRelease date : January 06, 2012

    The first week of the calendar year has been an inauspicious date historically. No One Killed Jessica did break that jinx last year, but I guess that had more to do with true content and performances than anything else.

    This film is director duo Abbas Mustans Indianised official remake of The Italian Job of 2003, which itself is a remake of the British original of 1969.
    Charlie (Abhishek Bachchan, Game, Dum Maaro Dum) is a chartered accountant who is advised of the idea of stealing gold bullions being sent by Russia to Romania. He seeks the help of his mentor Victor Dada (Vinod Khanna, Dabangg), who helps him assemble the best players in the world. So we have an illusionist Ronnie (Bobby Deol, Thank You, Yamla Pagla Deewana), a prosthetics expert, Sunny (Omi Vaidya, 3 Idiots, Dil To Bachcha Hai Ji), an auto expert Riya (Bipasha Basu, Dum Maaro Dum , Aakrosh) and Bilal (Sikander Kher) an explosives expert. Along with the help of Dadas daughter Naina (Sonam Kapoor, Mausam, Thank You), they manage to track down Spider (Neil Nitin Mukesh, 7 Khoon Maaf) a computer hacker, required for the job. Did I tell you that Naina is a hacker too, an ethical one at that!
    The robbery ends with a betrayal and that leads to Dadas death. The team seeks revenge on the traitor with another robbery but this time with the help of Naina, who wants revenge.
    There is no one to be blamed for the film but the director duo. They have mastered the art of adapting Hollywood films, Indianizing them and presenting the same with much style. Be it Baazigar A Kiss Before Dying, Daraar Sleeping with the Enemy, Baadshah A Nick of Time, Ajnabee Consenting Adults.
    Style is something which comes naturally to them. Race being the best example till date. It had style, an intelligent story, unbelievable twists and to top it all, excellent performances. I guess that is where Players goes wrong. It tries too hard.
    Abhishek should stop playing these cool dude type of roles that he is getting stereotyped in. Game being the most recent example. And this is the biggest problem in the film! Mark Wahlbergs Charlie Croker was a sincere thief working without any smugness. Our desi Charlie is too much about the suits, the shades and the know it all attitude. This is where the creative team goofed up. Whilst in the Italian Job, Charlies earnesty made you feel impressed with his Venice heist, feel his pain at the loss of his mentor, made you want him to succeed in regaining the gold. Players does not engage you in any sort of a connect with its characters.
    Bipasha too has to try something different than the regular amount of skin show that people have got used to. Same style of short outfits, similar hair styles and the same expressions too.
    Bobby Deol is wasted in this film! Why did they have to mess with his character at all! He was the ideal choice for reprieving Jason Stathams get away driver. Making him India ka sabse bada magician and then making him goof up at that doesnt gel at all. Complete waste of an opportunity.
    Sikander Kher again a waste. There is no characterisation for him at all. Inspite of being deaf, he barely has any hearing issues. Inspite of being a explosives expert, the kind of stuff that he is shown using, would make wannabe gangsters of Shor in the City seem like pros!
    Omi Vaidya is again wasted. Neither does his character have any depth nor does he deliver a performance any different than an extension of Chatur.
    Neil has the best role, but in an attempt to overdress, he underacts.
    Sonam Kapoor, the less said the better. Neither can she act, dance, emote, nor can she look glamorous in the outfits that she wears.
    The only saving grace is the action by Allan Amin, but then again too few too far.
    Besides a poor script and dialogue by Rohit Jugraj and Sudip Sharma, their screenplay is the deal breaker. Everything happens for the sake of convenience and too easily. Long drawn explanations and stupid dialogues like planning ka waqt khatam teri expiry date khatam and my favourite by Sonam maine computer hack kar diya hai!
    Abbas Mustan let you down big time here. In a remake, since the characters have already been established and accepted, the people playing them have to be stars with persona and acting skills too. In Players besides Omi, all are just star kids!
    What again they missed out to encash upon was exploring and exploiting the fact that you had 2 star sons, whose fathers were one of the best on screen buddies of their times with an array of hit films to their credit, Amitabh and Dharmendra. Instead of using that, they stuck to useless style over substance. Pritams song seems prophetic in the film Buddhi de bhagwan.
    Does Players manage to break that jinx? Forget it! On the contrary, it might jinx your year!
    Does it have The Y Factor:NO!
    Rating:4/ 10

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