The ApunKaChoice movie review of Singham Returns. White money wasted is no less a loss than black money hoarded. Much though I would love to see the collective arse-busting of black money hoarders on screen by a beefy, doughty hero, I wouldn’t do it at the peril of my white money being wasted on a loud, clichéd, predictable film with eardrum shattering background score and unimaginative direction.
But lord bless Ajay Devgn! Like in the film, he comes to the rescue and saves director Rohit Shetty’s blushes and tax-paying janta’s white money with his plucky act.
Singham Returns has Devgn slipping again into the hip-hugging khakis of the courageous cop Bajirao Singham. Only this time, he’s the Mumbai DCP taking on the might of a creepy Godman (Amole Gupte) and corrupt politician (Zakir Hussain). The story takes off when a police constable’s dead body is found with crores of cash. While accusatory fingers point at the venality of the cops, Bajirao Singham plans to dig deep and he unearths a trail of black money leading to the godman. The cash is to be used to buy votes for the corrupt neta in cahoots with the godman.
Bajirao Singham isn’t the only one raining on the parade of this evil duo. An idealist teacher and social crusader Guruji (Anupam Kher) spearheads a movement to field honest, young candidates (sans any tendency to sit on dharnas, I hope) in the elections.
So as the battle-line is drawn, our hero Bajirao Singham not only fights the baddies wielding rocket launchers and assault rifles, he also damns the tyrannical system that suits the bad guys more than the cops.
'Singham Returns' is a salute to the power of Khaki. Cops with dresses and demeanour as neat as their conscience command our attention. In one scene, they take to the road in squeaky clean white vests to (not advertise a new detergent but) display their power and unity.
Kareena Kapoor is more or less relegated to the sidelines as the chirpy, vivacious, feisty Avni, who even rides an autorickshaw in a sequence.
The real shocker comes from director Rohit Shetty. He shows uncharacteristic restraint on many counts: 1. He takes ages to blow up the first car. 2. He makes Ajay Devgn strip and take the expected dip in the pond not until the second half. 3. He doesn’t make the hero spout the catch-line ‘Aata Majhi Satakli’ more than 3-4 times. That’s admirable.
What Shetty spares us on one front, he assaults us with on the other. Once the cars start exploding, there’s no let up. Gratuitous violence is as much foisted on us as the romantic track between Ajay Devgn and Kareena Kapoor. A few actions sequences do hit the mark and will be greeted with wolf whistles. The credit goes as much to Shetty as to Ajay Devgn, who, with his seething intensity and fiery eyes, makes Bajirao Singham roar again on the big screen.
If you must, watch Singham Returns for Ajay Devgn.