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Review: Action Jackson

Ajay's latest is just as full of stupidity as action

Review: Action Jackson

Action Jackson*

Dir: Prabhudeva

Starring: Ajay Devgn, Sonakshi Sinha, Yami Gautam, Manasvi Mamgai, Anantharaj, Kunal Roy Kapur

I have a general rule of thumb regarding Ajay Devgn’s movies. If his hair is some shade of blonde (in his case it is usually more like an orangish hue) then the movie’s probably going to be insufferable. And Devgn’s hair in Action Jackson lets us know almost immediately what we are in for the next interminable two-and-a-half hours.

If Prabhudeva’s latest venture had either been just a slick, ultra-violent action film or just a deliberately dumb comedy then perhaps there was some hope of salvaging something from it. But as it stands, the movie is a weird Frankenstein monster: full of bits and pieces which just don’t fit together. It’s difficult to take a bloody action scene – no matter how well it may have been shot, lit, and choreographed – seriously if it’s been preceded by a fart joke. Similarly, it’s difficult to laugh at slapstick humour if it follows a scene – shot in slo-mo and in extreme close-up – of a pregnant woman being bashed repeatedly in the face by a giant of a man.

Even dumb humour requires a certain amount of intelligence to pull off well but here it seems that all concerned had checked their brains at the door and the default setting is crudity. For instance, Sonakshi Sinha’s character thinks that catching an eyeful of Ajay Devgn in his briefs brings her good luck (yes, really!) and so she spends an inordinate amount of time trying to get the leading man to take his pants off. Note to Prabhudeva: crudity is not the same thing as comedy.

The so-called revolves around two lookalikes and the thwarted love of a Thailand-based gangster’s sister for one of them – her brother’s main hit-man. Rejection drives li’l sis bat-shit crazy and sets violent events in motion. Actually, I found the character of Marina (played by former Miss India and current supermodel Manasvi Mamgai) semi-interesting and it might have been fun to watch a Tarantino-ish thriller about a crazy, sexy sociopath setting ablaze the Thai underworld. But no such like – we have to make do with Ajay Devgn doffing his shirt every chance he gets to show off his (admittedly impressive) pecs, some awful comedy, and equally uninteresting songs and dances (considering that it’s a Prabhudeva the latter weakness is even more of a disappointment).

Cut to chase: Extremely violent and extremely stupid. Utter waste of time.

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