ApunKaChoice : Bollywood


Victoria No. 203Victoria No. 203 : Movie Review
01st Sept 2007  17.02 IST
By Aparajita Ghosh  

The old 'Victoria No. 203' was laced with fun and excitement. But the modern remake of the film is just a boring watch.

Even though you may not remember many dialogues from it, the memory of the old 'Victoria', starring Pran, Ashok Kumar and Saira Banu, still lingers somewhere in the back of the minds of those who saw the film. Sadly, the movie's modern version Victoria No. 203 , directed by Anant Mahadevan , fails to live up to the original.

Firstly, the movie is not as entertaining. Secondly, a better actress ought to have been signed for the part of Sara. Newcomer Soniya Mehra (late Vinod Mehra's daughter) doesn't do justice to the role once played by the talented Saira Banu .

The movie roughly has the same plot and storyline with a few new additions in the edgeways by Anant Mahadevan.

Diamonds worth hundreds of crores are displayed in an exhibition. Bobby ( Javed Jaffrey ) is a rich businessman who is obsessed with these diamonds. His moll Devyani ( Preeti Jhangiani ) shares his obsession. Unable to buy the precious stones, Bobby decides to steal them instead.

So he hires Ranjit (Kamal Sadanah) and Tora (Tora Khasgir) to rob the diamonds.

Together the duo manages a successful heist. But Tora has some other plans. Lured by diamonds worth millions, she tries to double cross Ranjit.

Ranjit is not a guy to get duped. He stabs Tora, who escapes and hides the diamonds in Victoria No. 203 before dying. The Victoria's driver is the main suspect for this murder.

Enters Sara (Soniya Mehra), the driver's daughter, who is compelled to ride the horse-drawn carriage to earn extra money. During one of these rides, a customer named Jimmy (Jimmy Shergill) falls for Sara's charm.

On the other hand are two crooks, Rana ( Om Puri ) and Raja ( Anupam Kher ) who have found a key, which, they are sure, opens a door to a big fortune.

Meanwhile, Sara keeps riding the Victoria without realizing that there are diamonds worth millions hidden in it. Who manages to get his hand on the diamonds - the greedy Bobby, the shrewd Ranjit, or the two crooks, or the charming Sara?

'Victoria No. 203' is not a patch on the original. The characters of Rana and Raja in this film are not as entertaining. Om Puri does manage to evoke laughs at times, but Anupam Kher performs below par. Also, the romantic track between Soniya and Jimmy Shergill should have been better developed.

In fact, Jimmy is not used to his potential. On the other hand, Soniya doesn't show any command over histrionics. Although it is not fair to criticize her in her debut effort, the poor girl has a bland expression for most part of her role.

Preeti Jhangiani performs much better in whatever role has been given to her. Kamal Sadanah and Javed Jaffery are pretty average.

Anant Mahadevan's direction is without any creative innovation. Although the film does have a modern look, it has nothing that further highlights the strong points of the original flick. And the film's music doesn't stand out either.

On the whole, a boring watch.

Rating: *

Victoria No. 203
Anant Mahadevan
Soniya Mehra
Saira Banu
Javed Jaffrey
Preeti Jhangiani
Om Puri
Anupam Kher

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