Monday, January 6, 2014

Dhoom 3: Bollywood at its uninspired best - I

Warning1: While I have tried my best to not reveal any plot twists that may ruin Dhoom 3 for you, this review of the movie may still kill the fun ... if you can even call it that ... for you if you have not watched it yet.

If it were not for my friends with who I went to watch 'Dhoom 3' and the jokes we shared at the expense of the situations in the movie, I would have stunk up the movie theater with the vomit that I'd have spewed 'cos of all the nausea from an overdose of uninspired and unoriginal mash that is Dhoom3.

The film is full of action sequences. But, not one of them is an original one, let alone awe inspiring. Unless one considers blatant imitation, of sequences from a few hollywood action flicks, inspiring. I could name the movies that those stunts originally appeared in right off the top of my head. And I don't even watch that many movies.

While the last scene was unfolding and the two main characters are falling off a dam, I was praying with folded hands to bollywood movie gods ... please, please, please, let them both take off their shirts while they are in the middle of their fall and button the two shirts together to make a parachute out of it. Now wouldn't that have been something?!

Here are a few that I am still able to recall:

1. Mission Impossible: Remember when Ethan Hunt walks down a wall tethered to a rope. Happens in Dhoom 3. Only, you will be able to tell that there was no wall when the character is walking down the wall ... the damn feet are off the wall.

2. Bad Boys 2: Remember when the "Bad Boys" drive down a hill and through the hutments on the slope, trashing everything in their way. Happens in Dhoom 3. I won't say any more ... you've got to see this one to believe it ... err ... actually, don't see it - watch Bad Boys 2 instead ... even if you've watched it before.

3. Transformers/Iron Man: Remember how the Transformers, or for that matter Iron Man, disassemble and reassemble on cue and all that metallic clickety-clank that one hears of steel rubbing against steel. Happens here too. Only, there are like eight joints that need to be established, but the clickety-clank sounds as if an entire F-15 is reassembled.

Okay, there is nothing against reimagining stunts. But, the stunt has to be done well, even if in front of a blue screen. The CGI has to be spot on so the viewer cannot tell the difference between reality and special effects. Remember the upside down Ethan Hunt, falling to within a few inches of the ground, in the first three Mission Impossible movies? The basic concept is the same in all three, but the execution gets better and better.

You don't want to obey the laws of physics when you think of a stunt ... that is okay ... stupid ... but okay in the reel world. But, do not go so overboard that that stunt comes out as something that a five year old thought of when made to do his homework against his wish. Can you think of any vehicle able to jump fifteen feet into the air, across a chasm that is at least twenty feet across, from a take off point ten feet from the edge with no ramp. And no, this wasn't a navy harrier. This was ... some thing ... made from two bikes joined together at their front and back wheels. Yeah, that is what I thought - WTF ... right?!

The best thing that I recall about an action sequence/stunt from Dhoom 3 is quite simple really - the wiggle of the bike's tail that Aamir Khan's character drives - but it seems genuine and it seems beautiful ... the way the bike first goes into an imbalance, the rear wheel begins to skid away and then comes out of it - exactly like it would happen.

Warning2: If you have not watched Dhoom 3 yet, and you still want to watch the movie after reading my rant above, now is when you should quit, 'cos what comes next is something that will definitely ruin the movie for you.

So there is a "twist" in Dhoom 3 on which the movie's plot literally hinges. This twist is borrowed ... or ... whatever else they call plagiarism these days ... straight from another hollywood movie - The Prestige. If you've watched The Prestige you already know what I am talking about. If you haven't watched it, watch it before watching Dhoom 3, 'cos if you do it the other way around you'd definitely end up ruining the fun watch that is The Prestige. This last comment itself should tell you all you need to know about Dhoom 3 - this movie is so mind numbingly unoriginal and uninspired.

PS: Yash Raj Films: I want my money back + I want money for the five man hours I spent traveling to and from the movie theater and three hours spent inside + the  money for the gas + the money spent on my soft drink and popcorn + the money spent when I logged in to my blog wanting to get this off my chest! Okay, okay ... keep the damn money ... but please don't make another movie like this one.

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