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Movie Review: Race 3

Banners: Salman Khan Films, Tips Films

Producers: Salma Khan, Ramesh Taurani

Director: Remo D’Souza

Cast: Anil Kapoor, Salman Khan, Jacqueline Fernandez, Bobby Deol, Daisy Shah, Saqib Saleem, Freddy Daruwala

Writer: Shiraz Ahmed

Music: Jam8, Meet Bros, Vishal Mishra, Vicky-Hardik, Shivai Vyas, Ali Jacko, Jayanta Pathak, Gurinder Seagal

Ever since Wanted released in 2009, Salman Khan has entertained us with a blockbuster release virtually every year on the festival of Eid. It’s a lethal combination that has paid off for the audience, who has come to expect an entertainer of epic proportions on this date every year.

This time, Khan is back with his swag and a sequel in a hit franchise, in Race 3. Expectations from this film are humongous and why not? While the film entertains the audience in the first half, the second half is a treat for Khan’s fans.

The second half of the film is signature Khan – his style, stunts and dialoguebaazi. In short, ‘Salman Khan’ means ‘Entertainment’. And Race 3 provides enough of that! This is a masala entertainer that offers a paisa vasool experience. And, yes, do leave your thinking cap at home. The first half of the film may not have many whistle-podu scenes, the second half is full of them, making the film a dhaansu entertainer.

There is a definition of ‘commercial’ in Bollywood, literally and figuratively, and Remo D’Souza’s Eid dhamaka, Race 3, holds true on both those accounts. The film boasts a star cast that only few directors dream of and even fewer manage to bring together. From a name like Salman Khan in it to the energy of Anil Kapoor and the appeal of Jacqueline Fernandez, the film has it all. And just like what is expected of a masala entertainer from our Hindi film industry, this film too focuses more on style than substance. But who cares, when there’s Salman Khan!!!

The film is a story about Shamsher Singh (Anil Kapoor), a powerful arms dealer in Al Shifa, whose business is run by his twin son and daughter, Sooraj (Saqib Saleem) and Sanjana (Daisy Shah), and his favoured stepson Sikander (Salman Khan). Sikander’s close friend and bodyguard Yash (Bobby Deol) is also a part of this family. But their friendship runs into trouble when they fall in love with the same girl Jessica (Jacqueline Fernandez).

When an opportunity to blackmail some politicians comes their way, the family decides to take advantage of it and work together. But during this deal, several revelations are made, old secrets are unearthed, loyalties are tested, and twists and turns are witnessed. How this family fares in this complicated race is what forms the crux of the story.

The franchise of Race has had a cult following for a decade, and people know what to expect from it. The glamour has to be there, sure, but there should also be those moments of shock which make the audience’s jaw drop. While D’Souza has tried several times to throw a curveball to the audience at various instances, the delivery falls a little a short at times, taking the punch out of the big reveal. But again, who cares, the film has Salman Khan!!

But there are quite a few advantages in the film that we have not seen before. This third instalment has wider appeal, and elements of comedy and drama included too. The romance angle is a little confusing at times but it is elaborate, going a tad over-the-top with the YRF signature style of saris on a snow-clad mountain, which kind of looks out of place in a thriller franchise like Race. Well… do you think the audience really cares, when the film has Salman Khan!!

The dialogue of the film is already famous thanks to the trailer but the film has even more dramatics. The best part is the one-line punches of Salman Khan that manage to crack you up thanks to his straight-face dialogue delivery.

Another big advantage is the amazingly choreographed action sequences. The car chase and fight scenes are up to international standards, and Salman Khan fans are surely in for a chiseled, muscled treat as his shirt goes off, in 3D mind you, in the climax fight along with Bobby Deol’s, which is an added bonus. Also, the action scene between two leading ladies is another highlight of the film.

The songs of the film follow the line of the rest of the film in being appealing but a few of them like Selfish have been unnecessarily forced into the narrative, making the film longer than it should be. The editing could have been crisper as some fight scenes could have had more impact if they had not been stretched. There were also a few story sub-plots that seem to be overkill, overshadowing the core story of the film. Well, Salman Khan’s presence is more than enough to NOT to think of all this.

The critics might criticise some elements in the film but the makers must be commended for still going ahead and making an unabashed entertainer for the masses. The film is a commercial potboiler that Indians love, from time to time. The director has managed to get an amazing cast on board and give the audience what they had been craving for a long time, a glamourised, larger-than-life film.

Performance-wise, Salman Khan is back – and in style! He gives a good performance with his signature style of delivering punch lines and phenomenal screen presence. Anil Kapoor is quite decent in his role and his camaraderie with Khan is worth a watch, especially when the two start talking in Bhojpuri.

Jacqueline Fernandez mesmerises you with her pole dancing skills, once again, but as a performer she is just about okay. Bobby Deol looks dashing and gives a strong performance. Saqib Saleem is perfect. Daisy Shah is good. Freddy Daruwala is decent in the screen time he gets. Sharat Saxena is fantastic. Milind Gunaji is just all right. The others lend adequate support.

Verdict: Hit! 

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