Monday, April 06, 2009

8X10 Tasveer

Rating : 4/10
Release Date : 3rd April ‘09
Time : 125 minutes
Director & Writer : Nagesh Kukunoor ; Music : Bohemia, Neeraj Shridhar, Salim-Sulaiman
Starring : Akshay Kumar, Sharmila Tagore, Girish Karnad, Ayesha Takia, Anant Mahadevan, Rushad Rana, Benjamin Gilani

A very interesting premise, that of a man who can transport himself into a photograph and see things from the point of view of any of the characters in the photo, and a pretty good, tense build up amidst lovely landscape in Canada is almost scandalously spoilt by a terrible, illogical ending which leaves you wishing you could transport yourself back in time till before you entered the cinema hall.

Akshay is a rich kid who loves the environment so much that he works for the environmental protection agency (EPS) and is also estranged from his father, who is in the oil business, over the same issue. His father, unknown to Akshay, is about to hand over all his wealth to the EPS but dies just before he could do so. Was it an accidental death or was it murder ?And were any of the other persons on the yatch involved ? A very shifty looking uncle, Anant Mahadevan ? Or the mother, Sharmila ? Or the trusted friend and lawyer, Girish Karnad ? Or Akshay’s friend, Rushad, who looks too good to be true ? And just to add to the merriment there is an oddball detective, Javed Jaafri (who else ?) and Akshay’s girlfriend, Ayesha.

The first half is pretty good, keeps you engaged and builds up nicely, if you’re able to overlook such implausibilities as Akshay jumping off a 100ft cliff into a lake, which is so shallow that he can stand when he surfaces or a romantic song which ‘breaks’ the tension and kind of became a pre-intermission toilet break for most of the audience. Canada, as everyone knows, is beautiful and the camera showcases precisely that. I wish though, that I could reveal the end, as approx 30 minutes before the film ends, it starts to irrevocably go wrong. The twist was too predictable and also too implausible in the way it is developed. None of the characters is built up at all, including Akshay, who comes across too cold and too flat, kind of like Harbhajan bowling when he hasn’t yet taken a wicket (you guessed it…am fresh from watching the India- NZ Test match).

Its sad because this could’ve been great. It’s a very original and novel premise (am happy to be corrected, if anyone knows otherwise ?) and surely it deserved better. As it turns out, no one shines in this mess, except to a small degree, Canada.