Remember the early 90’s show ‘Baywatch’ where models who couldn’t act would randomly run on the beach saving lives? Gunday reminded me of it but in an awful manner. Instead of saving lives, these Gundas here are sometimes running for their lives, sometimes for their work but mostly for no reason at all
Are you a big slo-mo action fan? If yes, you’ll love Gunday because director-writer Ali Abbas Zafar sure is. More than half of his film moves in slow mo and literally reduces your brain to a tiny cynical cube where it gets too heavy for you to intake the shenanigans. Ali Abbas Zafar’s 2nd film after the horrendous hit of no talent ‘Mere Brother Ki Dulhan’ is similar to the first one in many ways. Firstly, like Katrina Kaif turned into a desi-kudi from a free-spirited I-don’t-give-a-damn girl, Priyanka Chopra’s character turns from a cabaret dancer to a woman in the time span of just a few scenes. If that’s well and good the lead characters over-act, shout and are incredibly loud in scenes which require smooth flow of emotions. I read somewhere that Mr. Kapoor and Mr. Singh have incredible chemistry in their film Gunday’, but am sorry to say they had a better chemistry and their bromance seemed more real on Karan Johar’s show ‘Koffe With Karan’. Moreover the time which could have been utilized in setting up a better characterization for the two leads is wasted on the contrived love triangle which is utterly unconvincing from the word go.
The plot of Gunday is not even more than maybe 50 words. Mr. Singh and Mr. Kapoor play Bikram and Bala respectively, two kids from Bangladesh who run-off to Calcutta and grow up to become coal gundas, and later the rulers of Calcutta. They both generate an attraction for a cabaret dancer named Nandita (Priyanka Chopra). This attraction is stamped as love within seconds and in the rest of the film they are just fighting with each other; firstly, over Durga-visarjan and secondly when their oiled hairless bodies collide for no reason whatsoever. While the film is set in the 80’s which could have worked for its script, the director focuses on mug-shots of their over-acting protagonists walking and fighting in slow-mo.
The only sexy thing about the film is Irrfan Khan, who in a miniature role carries more charisma than the leads do throughout the first half. He merely says ‘Accha-Hai’ and it lights up the screen more than anything else in the film does. When Mr. Khan says “Pistol ki goli aur laundiya ki boli dono aadmi ki jaan le sakti hai” its livelier than the boys running around doing stupid things in stupid situations. Yes there is a twist in the tale in the later half of the film which may or may not be judged and it does get a bit entertaining but Alas! It comes in way too late. The tone that the rest of the film had set makes those good things look bland too.
The director tries very hard to make the first half look stunning with a background score that sounds engaging it couldn’t lift up the film’s shallowness even a bit higher. The songs and Irrfan Khan are the only saving grace for this at the end.
Final Verdict: I would give this an Angutha-down but there are a few people who might enjoy the film. Not everyone will.