Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Bollywood's Heist Films

Thieves take over Bollywood

This Friday sees the release of Anubhav Sinha's Cash, a film the director describes as a caper film. Bollywood's seen quite a few of these in recent years, and here -- in alphabetical order -- is a set of 10 caper films of different kinds.

Of course, you could just call the list Why DVD Players Should be Banned In Mumbai.Read on.


Vipul Shah's film had disgruntled bank manager (Amitabh Bachchan) leading a gang of blind crooks (Akshay Kumar, Paresh Rawal and Arjun Rampal) towards his former place of employment. Sushmita Sen, meanwhile, plays Catherine Entrapment Zeta Jones.

Apna Sapna Money Money

Sangeeth Sivan's contrived 'comedy' is a Mumbai-based melee of skimpily clad women and con-men. Watch out for Riteish Deshmukh, though, as a comely master (mistress?) of disguise.


Rohan Sippy went retro with this ode to father Ramesh's films, the late-70s era of Big B coolth -- and Ridley Scott's Matchstick Men. Abhishek Bachchan commendably played it with a straight face. Nana Patekar, Riteish and the soundtrack made the film even better.

Bunty Aur Babli

Shaad Ali's film had a bunch of fine songs and a massive amount of overkill, but while Abhishek managed to carry a couple of scenes, this was Rani Mukerji's show all the way. Daddy Bachchan should only have been around for the item song.


Vivek Agnihotri took The Usual Suspects to London, painted it in monotones, and added bad songs. Suniel Shetty plays Keyser Soze. 'nuff said?

Dhoom: 2

This Sanjay Gadhvi music video didn't make any sense, but Hrithik Roshan oiled up his abs, juggled a few different wigs, and smiled at his job as the world's best thief. What else does a film need?

Ek Khiladi Ek Haseena

Suparn Verma took on Confidence, but aided by a cast featuring Koena Mitra and Fardeen Khan, this was always going to be a stretch. One hopes the animated version works better.

Fool N Final

Choreographer Ahmed Khan got together a bizarre cast for this multistarrer, but hiring a scriptwriter must have been too monumental an effort. So here we go with a pained rehashing of Guy Ritchie's Snatch, with Sunny Deol in the Brad Pitt role. Nope, even Ayesha Takia as Wonder Woman isn't enough of a reason to watch this one.

Phir Hera Pheri

Priyadarshan's original Hera Pheri remains one of the best comedies of the 1990s, but he gave up on the trio and writer Neeraj Vora directed it instead. Ironically, he chose not to write either, save to copy Guy Ritchie's breakthrough debut, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. Ack.


The big daddy of DVD-filmmakers, Sanjay Gupta went all out with this one, a killer soundtrack hardly masking blatant lifts -- plots and scenes -- from Reservoir Dogs and Swordfish. And when Sanjay Dutt literally translates Dogs lines to Amitabh, you realise just how ghastly this mess can be.


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