Monday, April 25, 2011

#108: Dum Maaro Dum

Set in Goa, Dum Maaro Dum is a thriller that centers around Goa underworld and the business of drugs. Until a couple of years ago, the traffickers were not only rampant but also had many takers on the establishment side backing them. So while this is a work of fiction, Rohan Sippy directs his favorite actor Abhishek Bacchan in a movie that has a very real context in the history of Goa's existence as a state.

Abhishek plays ACP Kamat, a cop who is brought back into the police force to check the rising crime rate in Goa, the root of which lies in drug trafficking. His target is a man named Michael Barbossa- the boss of the underworld network in Goa. In two other storylines which also revolve around people whose lives have turned upside down because of the dreaded powder, Prateik Babbar plays the 17-year-old Lori and Rana Daggubati plays Joki, a musician. The three storylines are parallel but only for a short time and merge soon. The brilliant screenplay in the first half doesn't have one dull moment as these characters confront you with their problems. The editing is street-smart and the performances eye-caching. The screenplay that's going back and forth sets the movie up for an appetising second half in spite of a few dialogues that defy logic like the needless, " Aajkal criminals bhi Facebook aur Twitter pe hain...'

Little would you know however that the best the movie has to offer is behind you by the time the second half starts taking shape. Instead, it becomes a bits and pieces movie. For Abhishek Bachchan hams a bit and acts a bit. Rana tries his bit to act and Prateik is good in whatever bits he is in. The story starts getting long-winded and the ending is downright boring. Aditya Pancholi and Bipasha as part of the supporting cast are relevant but not entirely impressive. Deepika Padukone brings herself a lot of discredit but gyrating in a song that didn't seem to have a costume designer or a choreographer at work. Maybe it's Rohan Sippy who is to blame but if Deepika's intention was to have a song hotter than Munni... or Sheela..., it's time she starts gorging on that massive bowl of humble pie.

To sum it up, Dum Maaro Dum is at best watchable. It's one of those movies that seem like two different movies in the two halves. If you plot the watchability of the movie on a graph, it will resemble one of those bell curves you studied in school. It ascends beautifully till the first half and then nosedives. Rohan Sippy surely knows how to make his movies stylish and contemporary and while he was at it, one will have to say, he did come close to making a good second movie.

Rating: 5.8/10

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