Simmba Review: Even with flaws and bright colours, both staring at the audience in this shining Rohit Shetty film, it works because it is unapologetic. There is no half-measure. A masala mass-entertainer.
Simmba Cast: Ranveer Singh, Sara Ali Khan, and Ajay Devgn in a cameo
Simmba Director: Rohit Shetty
Simmba Review: Simmba is another colorful addition to director Rohit Shetty’s universe. In the Shetty-verse everything is extravagant, and exaggerated. The muscle power, the slow-motion entry and walk scenes, colours and over the top action but they all surprisingly work. It was important to begin the review with an acknowledgement to Shetty as no other contemporary filmmaker can make all this ‘masala’ work, especially in 2018 where audiences have preferred content-backed films rather than falling for lures of superstardom or big-budget films.
Simmba has everything that we have seen in Shetty’s films. The film takes us into the world of Sangram Bhalerao aka Simmba, a fan of Singham, played by Ranveer Singh. He is a charming yet corrupt cop. He wins over his colleagues and the local goon Durva Ranade played by Sonu Sood and in the process also wins the heart of Sara Ali Khan. Simmba runs into trouble with Ranade as the two cross paths over a rape incident involving Simmba’s sworn sister and Ranade’s brothers. It marks coming of age for Simmba and triggers a turnaround where he repents his (mis)deeds and goes on a path of redemption through revenge.
But what steals the thunder from Ranveer’s Simmba is Ajay Devgn’s Singham which roars a notch above. The film ends with a surprise in the form of Akshay Kumar.
The very things which might not work in any other director’s films fall perfectly in place for Rohit Shetty. Be it men (or cars which are missing in this film) flying all over in an action sequence, the colorful dance and song sequences with trillions of extras, slow-motion walks or punchy one liners, Shetty is undoubtedly the maharaj of masala movies. Ranveer Singh opened the year with a bang with Padmaavat and will bring curtains down for Bollywood’s 2018 with this mass entertainer. He is catching up with the superstars and this movie will show whether he has created a solid fan base for himself or not. A must for superstardom. Sara Ali Khan has precious little to do but is a show-stopper in the two songs. Sonu Sood is menacing as the protagonist Durva Ranade and it takes two – the Lion and the cub – to take him down. Support cast including Ashutosh Rana, Ashwini Kalsekar and Siddhartha Jadhav are top notch in their respective roles.
Shetty has smartly added the chartbuster remix songs Aankh Marey and Tere Bin in the film itself and not with or during the end credits, as is the norm these days. Anyways, what is the point in showing one of the highlights of your film when no one is watching, eh? While Aankh Marey song is peppy and fast, Tere Bin takes a slow romantic road back to, now forgotten, Switzerland. It is the masala film of the year. Rohit Shetty also drops hints for his next two films.
A film which is a wannabe champion of feminism has nothing much for women to do. They are in songs, they are at home, they are doing jobs, they are there but not there yet. Sara has some five dialogues and two songs. The film shows vigilante justice in a very ‘legal’ way. Not a great idea. The word rape is repeated infinite times, more in an attempt to justify an encounter than anything else, and Shetty, in one scene, even tries to make Devgn’s Singham meet Sunny Deol’s Govind from Damini for a courtroom speech. Ranveer is neither.
Watch Simmba Trailer:
Even with flaws and colours, both, staring at the audience in the Shining Shetty-verse, the film works because it is unapologetic in whatever they are trying to achieve. There is no half-measure. A masala mass-entertainer. There are many whistle worthy moments in this film, Ajay Devgn’s entry at the top of the heap, and this is want the audiences want after two back to back damp squibs from Bollywood biggies.
Simmba Rating: 3 stars