Millennium Post

Khiladi's back, and how!

Perhaps the biggest franchise in Bollywood, Khiladi Akshay Kumar had a come-back scheduled in signature style for a long time. Keeping aside hits like Rowdy Rathore and Namaste London, Akshay has always had his loyal set of fans, but they too have been waiting for the return.

The merging of the action star with some sharp comedy has become Akshay’s trademark of sorts and Bollywood has taken him in with perfect ease in roles that needed drama and romance. You take Akshay for a movie – it is a package deal.

Khiladi 786 takes the whole concept of the ‘ultimate gamer’, to loosely translate, and almost gives him superhero type capabilities. Bahatar Singh (Akshay Kumar) works for the Punjab police, he isn’t a cop – you can’t make a Class XII fail a cop, can you? But he fights with what looks like EMP powered moves, the earth trembles, his enemies are thrown away at blink-you’ll-miss speeds, he punches a wall and it collapses... Yes, such things do happen in Bollywood. And it is throughly enjoyable.

All is good in the province, smugglers get thrashed in entertaining sequences and bus conductors don’t ask for tickets when anyone is headed to Bahatar’s village. The real story, however, is that no one wants to marry Bahatar, his reputation of a police muscleman doesn’t get him the bride. And in Mumbai, there’s Don TTT (Mithun) who has a firebrand of a sister, Indu (Asin), who no one can dare to marry. Enters matchmaker and wedding planner Mansukh (Himesh Reshammiya). To salvage his own reputation in front of his father Mansukh, he must at least get one wedding successfully conducted. Pairing Indu and Bhatar up is a good deal, but when both families are lying, it is only a while before the land mines blow up.

Khiladi 786
is Akshay’s game. It possibly cannot belong to anyone else. With a spate of tepid hits in Bollywood lately, it is not a surprise when the audience walked in expecting a damp squib. But be prepared to be entertained – Khiladi 786 will make you laugh. So ok, you won’t be rolling on the floor with laughter, but the dialogues are pretty darn funny. It is perhaps the best thing that Bollywood has finally learned to laugh at itself and they are starting with Himesh’s nasal voice (Himesh is also the music director for the film). The music is already quite a hit, Himesh scores well with that.

Asin, Raj Babbar and Himesh hold their own but Mithun as TTT is really good. He’s probably one other example of yesteryears’ stars learning to adapt with the changing faces of the cinema. Go for it if you liked Rowdy Rathore. Khiladi 786 is funnier.
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