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Ishaan Khatter’s war drama Pippa kicks off filming in Amritsar

Based on Brigadier Mehta’s book The Burning Chaffees, Pippa also stars Mrunal Thakur, Priyanshu Painyuli and Soni Razdan.

Actor Ishaan Khatter’s upcoming war drama Pippa on Wednesday kicked off its first schedule in Amritsar.

Backed by RSVP and Roy Kapur Films, Pippa is directed by Raja Krishna Menon and also features actors Mrunal Thakur, Priyanshu Painyuli and Soni Razdan.

Pippa is billed as a heroic tank battle film that underscores the bravery of Brigadier Balram Singh Mehta, a veteran of the 45th Cavalry tank squadron, who, along with his siblings, fought on the eastern front during the Indo-Pakistan War of 1971.

Khatter stars in the film as Brigadier Mehta, who was invited by the production houses to provide the inaugural slate clap as filming commenced.

Producer Ronnie Screwvala (RSVP) said he was thrilled that Pippa began in the presence of Brigadier Mehta.

“Kicking off the schedule on such a positive note ensures a steady momentum throughout the course of the production. We’re raring to go with a brilliant ensemble cast and filmmaker Raja Krishna Menon, who has a savvy eye for war films,” Screwvala said in a statement.

Producer Siddharth Roy Kapur of Roy Kapur Films said the film will be mounted on a “sweeping canvas” to chronicle the story of a family’s bravery.

“From the time I first heard this amazing story of the bravery and resilience of a family on the frontlines of a just war, I knew it had to be told. I am thrilled that with RSVP we have been able to give this story the sweeping canvas it deserves, and that we have an accomplished director like Raja and an amazing cast and crew, to bring this vision to life.

“The team is excited to hit the floors today and we hope to bring our audiences a very special cinematic experience in theatres next year,” Roy Kapur said.

The film is based on Brigadier Mehta’s book The Burning Chaffees.

The movie’s title is taken from the Russian amphibious war tank called the PT-76, popularly known as Pippa.

Menon said he is excited to begin shooting for the film.

“We’ve all been prepping hard for this day, and I cannot wait to bring this incredible story of valour and liberty to the audiences,” he said.

Salman Khan’s Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali not shelved, makers rubbish rumours

Salman Khan’s film Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali has not been shelved. The makers of the film have rubbished all the rumours and talked about its development on social media.

Salman Khan-starrer Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali is not being shelved, but instead is going on floors in the next two months. The producer of the film, Nadiadwala Grandson Entertainment Movies, rubbished reports that claimed the film was shelved and shared fresh details about the film’s development. Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali is written by Sajid Nadiadwala and directed by Farhad Samji.
SALMAN KHAN’S KABHI EID KABHI DIWALI NOT SHELVED

After Salman Khan announced his new film Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali in 2020, several Bollywood stars congratulated the actor on social media. Recently, however, reports started doing the rounds that the film had been shelved because Salman’s Radhe: Your Most Wanted Bhai wasn’t a big hit.

The makers of the film, Nadiadwala Grandson Entertainment Movies, issued a clarification. Taking to the official Twitter handle, they wrote, “We would like to deny all the #FakeNews. The set is being constructed & songs have already been recorded. Shooting begins in 2 Months

SALMAN KHAN ANNOUNCED KABHI EID KABHI DIWALI IN 2020

Salman Khan took to social media to announce his new film Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali in January 2020. Back then he revealed the film will be written and produced by Sajid Nadiadwala, while Farhad Samji of Housefull 4-fame will be helming the project.

He wrote, “Announcing My Next Film… Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali…. Story & Produced By Sajid Nadiadwala…Directed By Farhad Samji…Eid 2021 .

Bhoot Police Movie Review: Saif Ali Khan, Arjun Kapoor film is no Stree, but is fun in parts

Bhoot Police is enjoyable in parts. It does have its much-required comic elements but the film feels dragged in others. Bhoot Police will give you the chills but the inconsistent writing drifts you away.

Horror is a genre that Bollywood has not had quite a success with so far. In the recent past, several filmmakers have experimented with the horror-comedy genre as well and only a few films have been able to hit the right spot. Amongst them, Stree, was perhaps, the most memorable outing with a sharp feminist comment on the age-old fear of audacious and desirous women. Bhoot Police comes from a director who has experimented with the horror genre in his previous films (Ragini MMS, Darr @ The Mall and Phobia). Only this time, director Pavan Kripalani has ventured into the horror-comedy space. Do ghosts exist or is it just our ‘andhvishwas’ that leads us to believe in something that is not palpable? Bhoot Police pretty much revolves around this subject and keeps the viewers entertained with cracker one-liners and frequent spooks (or at least they have tried).

Vibhooti Baba (Saif Ali Khan) and Chiraunji Baba (Arjun Kapoor) are two ghostbuster brothers. While one (Vibhooti) loves to dupe the people for their money on the pretext of ridding them of spirits, the other (Chiraunji) is not happy with this way of making a living. He tries to convince his brother to take up a ‘real case’ because they are tantriks and they have a bigger purpose. One day Maya (Yami Gautam) comes looking for Ullat Baba since there is a Kichkandi in her tea estate. 27 years ago, Vibhooti and Chiraunji’s father Ullat Baba helped them get rid of the spirit. This time when Maya comes in search of him, she meets his sons instead. Obviously, they agree to help. The ghostbuster brothers reach Silawar Tea Estate only to unravel some twists in the tale.

Saif Ali Khan has a remarkable screen presence and it is his dialogues that keep you entertained throughout. His one-liners are enough to crack you up. You will enjoy his antics but certain parts feel redundant. It is Saif’s impeccable comic timing that gives the film its much-needed edge. Arjun Kapoor as Chiraunji is more of the serious type – the innocent and righteous sibling. Arjun and Saif have the maximum screen time, but the latter manages to snatch the spotlight away each time. Arjun struggles but makes an impression. Yami is good, but of course, we have seen her play better. Yami as Maya is this determined daughter who is bent on saving her father’s legacy, the tea estate, from being lost. Jacqueline Fernandez plays Maya’s sassy influencer sister Kanika, who wants to sell everything off and move to London. The actress has a forgettable appearance.

To add to the comedy quotient, the makers introduce us to the characters of Chedilal (Jaaved Jaaferi), Google Baba (Rajpal Yadav) and Hari Kumar (Amit Mistry). However, it only meets the purpose to some extent.

Bhoot Police is enjoyable in parts. It does have its much-required comic elements but the film feels dragged in others. Bhoot Police will give you the chills but the inconsistent writing drifts you away. Had the editing been tighter and the writing more coherent, this could have been a compelling watch. In some parts, it is the age-old tricks and drills that come into play which is a tad disappointing. The USP of the film is definitely Saif Ali Khan.

Now, to the important question – should you watch this film? Bhoot Police is no Stree but if you are looking for a break from the monotony of serious and nerve-wracking films, this definitely can be on your watchlist. Of course, Saif Ali Khan is the other reason why you can switch to Disney+Hotstar’s Bhoot Police.

Kartik Aaryan wraps climax scene of Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 with shot No 162

Kartik Aaryan announced that he has completed filming the climax scene of his upcoming film, Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2. The film also stars Tabu and Kiara Advani in pivotal roles.

Kartik Aaryan has been occupied with several upcoming projects. But this didn’t stop the actor from sharing updates about his life with his fans and followers. The actor recently announced that he has completed shooting the climax scene of his upcoming film, Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2. Anees Bazmee’s directorial venture also stars Tabu and Kiara Advani.


KARTIK AARYAN WRAPS CLIMAX SCENE OF BHOOL BHULAIYAA 2

Ever since Kartik Aaryan was roped in to play the lead character in Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2, he has been sharing constant updates about the film’s progress on social media. While sometimes he drops spooky BTS (behind-the-scenes) videos from the film sets, other times a picture with his co-stars.

Taking to his Instagram handle, Kartik Aaryan recently revealed that he has completed shooting the climax scene of the film. He posted a photo of a clapper board and wrote, “#BHOOL BHULAIYAA2 climax wrap!! Shot Number -162

ABOUT BHOOL BHULAIYA 2

Directed by Anees Bazmee, Bhool Bhulaiya 2 is a horror-comedy film. It stars Kartik Aaryan, Tabu and Kiara Advani in lead roles. Amar Upadhyay also joined the cast of Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 and will be seen playing a pivotal role opposite Tabu. Produced by Bhushan Kumar, the film is the sequel to the 2007 film Bhool Bhulaiyaa starring Akshay Kumar, Vidya Balan and Shiney Ahuja.

Gangubai Kathiawadi, RRR and Attack will release in theatres, confirm producers

Pen Studios released a statement confirming the theatrical release of Gangubai Kathiawadi, RRR and Attack. The makers said that the films are made for the big screen experience.

The makers of Alia Bhatt-starrer Gangubai Kathiawadi, SS Rajamouli’s RRR and John Abraham’s Attack have confirmed that the three films will be releasing in theatres. The rumours of these films releasing on OTT platforms had been doing the rounds for some time. Pen Studios, the production house behind the three films, today, September 8, called the rumours untrue. In a statement, the makers said that the films are made for the big screen experience and would be releasing in theatres.
MAKERS CONFIRM THEATRICAL RELEASE OF GANGUBAI KATHIAWADI, RRR AND ATTACK

The production house behind three magnum opus films – Gangubai Kathiawadi, RRR and Attack, Pen Studios, today announced that the three films will be releasing in theatres. The makers released the statement after rumours around the digital release of the films started doing the rounds. Confirming that the three films will hit big screens soon, Pen Studio’s Chairman and MD, Jayantilal Gada, in a statement, said, “We would like to clarify that Gangubai Kathiawadi, RRR and Attack will release in cinemas. There have been several rumours doing rounds about these films releasing on OTT platforms before cinemas which are untrue. These Magnum opus films are made for the big screen experience and would be releasing in theatres.

WHEN PEN STUDIOS ANNOUNCED NEW LINE-UP OF FILMS

In June, Pen Studios released a special video to announce their next line-up of films. The video mentioned that films such as Bell Bottom, Gangubai Kathiawadi, Anniyan remake, Attack and RRR are set to release in theatres soon. Using #BackToTheatre, the Instagram handle captioned the video as, “Dr. Jayantilal Gada (Pen Studios) introduces us to their impressive line-up this year. The studio is gearing up for their massive slate release, in cinemas near you (sic).” However, the post was later deleted from all social media handles.

Talking about Gangubai Kathiawadi, the film was slated to release in theatres on July 30. However, its release was deferred due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Alia Bhatt plays the titular role in the film. Apart from the Sanjay Leela Bhansali film, Alia will also be seen in another Pen Studios film RRR. The multi-starrer features Ram Charan, NTR Junior and Ajay Devgn. The film also stars many international actors.

Bhoot Police Movie Review: Saif Ali Khan, Arjun Kapoor film is no Stree, but is fun in parts

Bhoot Police is enjoyable in parts. It does have its much-required comic elements but the film feels dragged in others. Bhoot Police will give you the chills but the inconsistent writing drifts you away.

Horror is a genre that Bollywood has not had quite a success with so far. In the recent past, several filmmakers have experimented with the horror-comedy genre as well and only a few films have been able to hit the right spot. Amongst them, Stree, was perhaps, the most memorable outing with a sharp feminist comment on the age-old fear of audacious and desirous women. Bhoot Police comes from a director who has experimented with the horror genre in his previous films (Ragini MMS, Darr @ The Mall and Phobia). Only this time, director Pavan Kripalani has ventured into the horror-comedy space. Do ghosts exist or is it just our ‘andhvishwas’ that leads us to believe in something that is not palpable? Bhoot Police pretty much revolves around this subject and keeps the viewers entertained with cracker one-liners and frequent spooks (or at least they have tried).

Vibhooti Baba (Saif Ali Khan) and Chiraunji Baba (Arjun Kapoor) are two ghostbuster brothers. While one (Vibhooti) loves to dupe the people for their money on the pretext of ridding them of spirits, the other (Chiraunji) is not happy with this way of making a living. He tries to convince his brother to take up a ‘real case’ because they are tantriks and they have a bigger purpose. One day Maya (Yami Gautam) comes looking for Ullat Baba since there is a Kichkandi in her tea estate. 27 years ago, Vibhooti and Chiraunji’s father Ullat Baba helped them get rid of the spirit. This time when Maya comes in search of him, she meets his sons instead. Obviously, they agree to help. The ghostbuster brothers reach Silawar Tea Estate only to unravel some twists in the tale.

Saif Ali Khan has a remarkable screen presence and it is his dialogues that keep you entertained throughout. His one-liners are enough to crack you up. You will enjoy his antics but certain parts feel redundant. It is Saif’s impeccable comic timing that gives the film its much-needed edge. Arjun Kapoor as Chiraunji is more of the serious type – the innocent and righteous sibling. Arjun and Saif have the maximum screen time, but the latter manages to snatch the spotlight away each time. Arjun struggles but makes an impression. Yami is good, but of course, we have seen her play better. Yami as Maya is this determined daughter who is bent on saving her father’s legacy, the tea estate, from being lost. Jacqueline Fernandez plays Maya’s sassy influencer sister Kanika, who wants to sell everything off and move to London. The actress has a forgettable appearance.

To add to the comedy quotient, the makers introduce us to the characters of Chedilal (Jaaved Jaaferi), Google Baba (Rajpal Yadav) and Hari Kumar (Amit Mistry). However, it only meets the purpose to some extent.

Bhoot Police is enjoyable in parts. It does have its much-required comic elements but the film feels dragged in others. Bhoot Police will give you the chills but the inconsistent writing drifts you away. Had the editing been tighter and the writing more coherent, this could have been a compelling watch. In some parts, it is the age-old tricks and drills that come into play which is a tad disappointing. The USP of the film is definitely Saif Ali Khan.

Now, to the important question – should you watch this film? Bhoot Police is no Stree but if you are looking for a break from the monotony of serious and nerve-wracking films, this definitely can be on your watchlist. Of course, Saif Ali Khan is the other reason why you can switch to Disney+Hotstar’s Bhoot Police.

Bhoot Police song Mujhe Pyaar Pyaar Hai teaser out. Arjun, Yami make you fall in love

The teaser of Mujhe Pyaar Pyaar Hai from Bhoot Police was released today. The video features Arjun Kapoor and Yami Gautam.

Arjun Kapoor and Saif Ali Khan will be seen sharing screen space for the first time in Pawan Kripalani’s Bhoot Police. The film also stars Yami Gautam and Jacqueline Fernandez in pivotal roles. Today, September 1, the makers released the teaser of its new song Mujhe Pyaar Pyaar Hai. A slow number, the song is being promoted as the biggest romantic song of the season.
MUJHE PYAAR PYAAR HAI TEASER OUT

Bhoot Police is set to release on Disney+Hotstar on September 17. The makers of the film released the teaser of Mujhe Pyaar Pyaar Hai on September 1. The song will be released soon. The teaser gives a glimpse into the romantic song featuring Arjun Kapoor and Yami Gautam. The music of the song has been given by composer duo Sachin and Jigar. Shreya Ghoshal and Armaan Malik have sung the song, while lyrics have been penned by Priya Saraiya.

ARJUN KAPOOR SAYS FALL IN LOVE AGAIN

Arjun Kapoor shared the teaser of Mujhe Pyaar Pyaar Hai on social media. Calling it the biggest romantic song of the season, he wrote, “Come, fall in love again with the biggest romantic song of the season. Check out this teaser starring @yamigautam and I. Stay tuned for #MujhePyaarPyaarHai.

ABOUT BHOOT POLICE

Bhoot Police stars Saif Ali Khan and Arjun Kapoor in the roles of Vibhooti and Chiraunji, respectively. They go around catching ghosts. While for Vibhooti, his profession is no more than a way to con people, Chiraunji is serious about what he does. The two ghosthunters meet Jacqueline Fernandez and Yami Gautam’s characters on a mission to ward off a notorious spirit. The film, which is directed by Pavan Kripalani, will release on Disney+Hotstar on September 17.

Chehre Movie Review: Amitabh Bachchan, Emraan Hashmi thriller is not without loose ends

Chehre Movie Review: Amitabh Bachchan, Emraan Hashmi film is a righteous fight of black vs white. But it is not necessarily right.

Movie Name: Chehre
Cast: Amitabh Bachchan, Emraan Hashmi, Annu Kapoor, Raghubir Yadav
Director: Rumi Jafry

Brilliantly twisted minds have always been a thing of intrigue in literature, pop culture and cinema. Which is why we have woven stories around Sherlock Holmes or the homegrown Feluda. The thrill of knowing the unknown through observation and logic is unparalleled. Feluda dubbed it ‘mogojastro’ or the mind weapon. Those who have it flaunt it, the rest of us marvel and watch them – spellbound – solve mysteries. Rumi Jafry intended the Amitabh Bachchan, Emraan Hashmi, Raghubir Yadav, Annu Kapoor and Rhea Chakraborty-starrer Chehre to be that.

The trailer gave us a just idea of what to expect. On paper, it is so gripping that you watch like a hawk everything that unfolds on screen. For the most part. And then you also start noticing that while Rumi has managed to tightly knit the narrative together, by the end he’s run out of yarn, and we’re left yearning for something more, something better.

Sameer Mehra (Emraan Hashmi) happens to luckily bump into Paramjeet Singh Bhuller (Annu Kapoor) exactly when his car gives up after a freak accident he just escaped. Heavy snow in an uninhabited nook in the hills leaves him no choice but to accept Singh’s offer and walk up to Jagdish Acharya’s (Dhritiman Chatterjee) house. He meets their other friends Hariya Jatav (Raghubir Yadav) and Lateef Zaidi (Amitabh Bachchan). Four friends who have all their lives been attached to the Indian judicial system in varying capacities, and are now retired, spend their last few days conducting mock trials as fun post-dinner games. After much cajoling, and some unnecessary younger generation vs older generation talks, Sameer agrees to partake in tonight’s game as the accused. He is confident that he is a clean man and therefore prosecutor Zaidi will find nothing against him, Singh as his defence will be able to ably defend him, and judge Acharya will pronounce him innocent. And then the skeletons come tumbling out.

Chehre’s biggest flaw is that it positions the trinity of Zaidi, Singh and Acharya as somewhat of the Justice League – pun intended – fighting to punish the wrong, without any real motive. Sans the trappings of the judiciary of the real world, in this microcosm, the law is absolute. The righteousness in the script is black and white, much like the uniform these men have donned all their lives. Yet, in order to let the truth triumph, they are willing to resort to wily ways – searching through Sameer’s car and his phone without his permission – and solidify their suspicion. Even then, the story could have seemed plausible if the accused Sameer was in any way tied to either of their pasts – a case they worked on together but the culprit slipped away or an incident that ties them with Sameer which gives them knowledge of the truth and they’re simply working their way backwards. Anna (Rhea Chakraborty), as the pretty, young house help who is more like the daughter, and Joe (Siddhanth Kapoor), the mute Man Friday who is more of a friend, does provide that scope. But writers Rumi Jafry and Ranjit Kapoor do not take that bait. And in the end, we’re left with a story that hinges on law and the justice system, without giving us motive, the first thing law asks.

Behind the questionable hairdo bestowed upon Raghubir Yadav and Amitabh Bachchan, the performances by each of them is flawless. Dhritiman Chatterjee and Emraan Hashmi remain understated, allowing Amitabh to be the overdramatic prosecutor, overaccentuating here, sniggering there. Annu Kapoor strikes a fine balance there. Watching the four stalwarts feeding off each other’s years of acting experience is astounding and a masterclass in acting itself. Rhea gets an okayish role and she does it fine-ish. Krystle D’Souza’s Natasha Oberoi gets some meat and she sinks her teeth into the character. Siddhant gets a raw deal, and we wish to see him in better roles going forward. Chehre also stars Samir Soni in a cameo.

In the penultimate scenes of Chehre, Amitabh Bachchan is given a freakishly long monologue, which may have been Rumi Jafry’s proclamation of love for that deep baritone – and we love it too – but it is the film’s final undoing.

Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif off to Russia for Tiger 3 shoot?

Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif have set off for Russia to shoot Tiger 3, our source reveals. The film is directed by Maneesh Sharma.

Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif are ready to shoot some high-octane action sequences for Tiger 3 in Russia. The actors are off to begin the film’s international shoot schedule. In the Maneesh Sharma directorial venture, Salman will be seen reprising his role of Tiger, while Katrina will be seen as Zoya once again. Emraan Hashmi will be seen playing the antagonist in Tiger 3.
SALMAN KHAN AND KATRINA KAIF’S TIGER 3 INTERNATIONAL SCHEDULE

A month ago, Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif resumed shooting Tiger 3. Now, the stars are all set to begin the international leg of the film’s shoot schedule. According to our source, Salman and Katrina are off to Russia.

Earlier, a source had revealed that Aditya Chopra, whose Yash Raj Films is producing Tiger 3, has arranged for the cast and crew of the film to fly to the international locations in a jet. This is a measure keeping Covid-19 protocols in mind. Giving details of the schedule, the source had said, “YRF is chartering everyone including Salman, Katrina, director Maneesh Sharma, the entire cast and crew for this intense international leg that will see the team pull off some spectacular shooting schedules. Team Tiger takes off on August 18. The direction team under Maneesh has prepped for months for this schedule and Aditya Chopra is clear that the shoot needs to happen smoothly.”

The source further revealed the destinations where Salman Khan and Katrina kaif will shoot Tiger 3. “Salman and Katrina will land in Russia first and then head to multiple shooting destinations like Turkey and Austria. Aditya Chopra and Maneesh Sharma didn’t want to compromise on the scale of the film despite the pandemic and they have planned Tiger 3 to be a visually spectacular theatrical experience. Thus, this schedule will add a lot to the film’s visual extravaganza and some never-seen-before action sequences will be filmed,” the source added.
WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT TIGER 3?

Tiger 3 is the highly-anticipated third instalment in Salman Khan’s superhit Tiger franchise. The first film, titled Ek Tha Tiger, was directed by Kabir Khan. The spy thriller released in 2012 and was loved by fans. Its sequel, Tiger Zinda Hai, released in 2017. Now, Salman Khan will return with some great action as RAW agent Tiger in Tiger 3. Katrina Kaif will reprise her role as ISI agent Zoya, while Emraan Hashmi will essay the negative role of an ISI agent.

Salman and Katrina last shared screen space in 2019 in Ali Abbas Zafar’s Bharat.

Bell Bottom Movie Review: Swashbuckler Akshay Kumar saves India and theatres once again

Bell Bottom Movie Review: Akshay Kumar is on a mission – to pull the audience back into the theatres.

Movie Name: Bell Bottom
Cast: Akshay Kumar, Lara Dutta, Huma Qureshi
Director: Ranjit Tewari

It is simple protocol that RAW agents have to be known by a code name, in order, of course, to keep their identity a secret. Akshay Kumar’s Anshul instinctively opts for ‘Bell Bottom’ during his training. He is literally thrust into RAW, at a time when India is grappling with back-to-back hijacks, the inevitable hostage negotiations that follow and the ultimate freeing of captured terrorists along with crores of money to ensure no lives are lost. It is the 80s, Indira Gandhi (played by Lara Dutta) holds the Prime Ministers’s chair, with her trusted aide, RN Kao (Denzil Smith) by her side.

Akshay Kumar has flair. And sometimes a bit extra too. Even though Anshul wasn’t meant for or didn’t intend to come into this line of work, he seamlessly fits right in. Director Ranjit Tewari (of Lucknow Central fame), however, doesn’t go full out sprinkling the trademark Akki charm on us; he tries hard to keep the flamboyance of Akshay, the actor, and buoyancy of Akshay’s gait – swishing the hem of his extra-flared bell-bottoms – in check. Which is why perhaps the only whistle-worthy dialogue in the film – something about a dog, daddy and RAW – was given to Adil Hussain, to be delivered in his deadpan humour. This bottom-of-the-barrel dialogue, however, should have been entirely avoided. But a Bollywood masala movie director can do only so much; ultimately the slow-motion shots take over.

The first half of the film is spent in establishing the premise, laboriously, if you may. Anshul is given a backstory to justify he has vested interest in cracking the hijacking case at hand, and isn’t doing so simply for the country. Vaani Kapoor and Akshay even get a song – Marjaawan – the only one that makes it to the screen, apart from Tum Aaogey at the very end, to establish his earnestness. In the process, the actual mission of freeing the hijacked hostages is pushed (read cramped) to the second half.

Pakistan is still the enemy in 1983 – not much has changed between 1971 in Bhuj The Pride Of India and 1999 in Shershaah. A master move sends Pakistan into a frenzy. If only Indo-Pak relations, the hijackings, and international affairs were that simple.

Anshul has a plan, and then a backup and then a backup ka bhi backup because mummy kehti thi. And thus we have about 20 minutes of adrenaline-pumping suspense, hand-to-hand combat, but no bloodshed because Dubai ki mitti mein khoon nahi baha sakte. Like the crease of those crisp bell-bottoms Akshay dons, everything falls into place in a straight line. Even those that don’t, are so predictable that you see it coming like the Indian Airlines Flight 405 – one of the many hijacks this inspired-by-true-events (for example, the IC 814 hijacking) film borrows from.

Akshay can pull off such roles while he is parkouring from buildings. No surprises there. Adil and Lara do their job well, although Lara’s team of make-up artists deserve applause. Denzil remains a mute spectator throughout, save one dialogue about RAW’s honour. Vaani and Huma Qureshi, have very little screen time, but even in that, while Vaani gets a song, Huma gets a fight scene. Win-win. Zain Khan Durrani is excellent in his role. Unlike most films that portray such characters as loud, expletive-mouthing jihadis, Zain chooses to play the character subtly, letting his evil shine through his quiet eyes. It is, however, slightly heartbreaking to see him like this after the poetic Alfaaz in Onir’s Kuchh Bheege Alfaaz. But, kudos to the actor.

Finally, is it entertaining? Yes, as much as any Akshay Kumar film. Add to that the thrill of watching a film in theatres after what seems like an eternity and 3D-viewing, and you have a winner. Ultimately, we’re just happy that we’re a step closer to being business as usual at the movies.