Movie review – A Flying Jatt – An action entertainer that amalgamates messaging along with religious sentiments
By Joginder Tuteja
Rating: 3/5 stars
Ok, so this must indeed be a first not just for Bollywood, but for any film industry across the world. There have been superhero movies. There have been movies with religion as the central element. And then there have been movies (many documentaries actually) that have detailed the perils of environmental pollution. However, and as far as I can recollect, there has not been a single film anywhere that has brought these three elements together in a commercial entertainer. Guess what, as a matter of fact in the middle of this all, there is a ‘Beat Pe Booty’ thrown in as well!
Expect any other film industry to even imagine doing that, leave aside attempting it! In that perspective, Remo D’Souza and Ekta Kapoor get full marks for letting their imagination go wild and manage to pull it off reasonably well. From the originality perspective, A Flying Jatt scores.
That said, along with originality and imagination, what is also needed in cinematic world is good entertainment. When it is a big screen commercial affair, the need of those two hours is non-stop popcorn show to unfold. In that perspective, it takes a little while before you start warming up to the film. The beginning portions are straight out of the template. A nice-n-shy guy (Tiger Shroff) is content with his simple life that has a loving mother (Amrita Singh), a ‘jigri dost’ (Gaurav Pandey) and a crush (Jacqueline Fernandez). Then there is a businessman villain (Kay Kay Menon) who along with a hulky villain (Nathan Jones) wants to occupy a piece of land owned by the family so that he can bring on more factories in the region. Since the pollution created by these factories is already threatening the residents, the family takes it upon itself to defeat the villain.
While the story seems simple enough, it is the execution which is interesting, engaging and exciting (especially in the second half). In the beginning portions though, the light hearted portions are nice, though not hilarious. The romantic pieces are near to negligible. The villain angle is totally caricaturish. The special effects are okay. However, the graph starts getting better once Tiger gets his superhero powers and Nathan too gets the same, courtesy pollution. It is the game of equals now and the battle lines are drawn.
This is what makes the second half all the more interesting and suddenly the other subplots starts shaping up better too. The romantic angle turns out to be cute and Jacqueline gets a little more visible on screen (which lights it up actually). The villain starts getting more powerful too. Gaurav too gets good meat in his character and almost gets elevated to being the second lead instead of just being a ‘hero ka dost’. Action sequences become more exciting too and by the time the film reaches its pre-climax, the child in you wants to know what would happen next, even though you are well aware how it would all end.
This is also the part of the film where the amalgamation of religion factor as well as environmental preservation is merged wonderfully well. Yes, it may sound a tad preachy at places but Remo still weaves it for a cause (although his quote coming right in the middle of a scene seems ill placed, even though reasonable). Moreover, the entire logic behind the action unfolding in an outer space – albeit unbelievable – seems apt on the basis of the core plot of the film.
What works is the fact that all of it is done with a straight face. Tiger relies not just on his action and dance but also gives a good account of himself in several talkie scenes, be it dramatic, emotional or light hearted. Gaurav, who has done quite well in Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhaniya and web-series A Man’s World gives a very good account of himself. Nathan Jones has a good screen presence though dubbing of his dialogues has been mastered in such a way that at times they don’t seem clearly audible. Jacqueline Fernandez is cute though one has started expecting more screen time from her considering her current stature in the industry. Amrita Singh is decent, though seemingly forced at times. Kay Kay Menon acts realising fully well that at times he is needed to ham it up. He is effective.
Overall, A Flying Jatt is a nice entertainer that actually amalgamates messaging along with religious sentiments well while bringing on some good action for screen. Good fit as a popcorn affair.