Production: Ram Gopal Varma
Music: Bappi Lahiri
Many yesteryear classics have been remade. But this is the biggie. Ram Gopal Varma Ki Aag, the remake of the biggest movie to have hit the Indian Silver screen, SHOLAY! Is the Ram Gopal Varma’s version of Sholay as entertaining as the original classic? How does Big B carry off the role of Gabbar Singh? Expectations were high, but what we get is pure trash.
Narsimha (Mohanlal) a police officer, in hot pursuit of a cruel gangster Babban Singh (Amitabh Bachchan) accidentally ends up killing the younger brother of Babban. Babban escapes from jail and takes revenge by killing almost everyone from Narsimha’s family except his Sister-in-law Durga Devi (Sushmita Sen). Babban peels off Narsimha’s fingers and sets him free. Now its Narsimha’s turn to take revenge and he hires two small time thugs Heero – Hirendra Chavan (Ajay Devgan) and Raj (Prasanth Raj) to kill Babban.
The story of the original Sholay remains the same; a few scenes have been changed to give a modern feel to the movie. But the characters in the remake fail to make any kind of impact, something that was the key to Sholay’s success. Also the warm male bonding that Jay and Veeru shared in the original is lacking. The all important Heero – Raj characters are flawed. The flaws in the movie are unfortunately endless.
RGV movies are known for sleek editing, but here it’s completely messed up. Dialogues are cut short, a few scenes are suddenly broken and a song pops up. The music too is way below average. The whole movie comes across as a half hearted effort.
Amitabh Bachchan’s Babban character could have been better written. He looks menacing, scary et al but slightly over the top. Whatever the character, no matter how poor the script is Amitabh rises well above it and delivers a knock out performance. Every expression is worth applause. Mohanlal is brilliant too especially his scenes with Amitabh Bachchan and Sushmitha Sen. The performance of the rest of the cast are a major disappointment. Sushmitha Sen is good. Ajay Devgan just doesn’t look the character; such roles are just not meant for him. Prashanth Raj is below average in his debut. Nisha Kotari bears it all, but when it comes to acting talent she has none of it. Abhishek and Urmila Matondkar dance to the tunes of Mehbooba and they do it well.
Overall, Ram Gopal Varma Ki Aag disappoints in every department. Entertainment-wise too it has nothing much to offer. At the box office, this one is heading towards yet another major disaster of the year.