Movie Review: Shamitabh

Movie - Shamitabh

Cast - Amitabh Bachchan, Dhanush, Akshara Haasan Director - R. Balki
Rating - ***1/2

What the movie is about:

The movie is about an average looking man named Daanish (Dhanush) who's childhood dream is to be an actor but the only problem is that he cannot speak. The rags to riches story starts and the small town boy comes to Mumbai to become a star, believing he will make it even with his handicap. He meets Akshara (Akshara Haasan) on one of his struggling stints and she (of course) recognises his talent and wants to help him. Together they find a way to make this work and convince an old drunk man Amitabh Sinha (Amitabh Bachchan) to lend Daanish his powerful voice. To go with his heavy voice, Daanish is required to change his name and hence comes up with Shamitabh in which the 'Sh' indicates a silent Amitabh. Even with Amitabh's prickly nature the trio succeed to make Daanish's dream come true and he becomes a superstar from his debut movie itself. The story gets interesting when we see the budding romance of Akshara with the now reknowned Shamitabh and the proud egos of these two male stars clash with each other.

What we think:

Director R. Balki has done it again. The film-maker has successfully added a new feather to his cap with Shamitabh. Balki retains his signature style of bringing out exceptional acting from his already talented stars in his flawlessly understated style. Though there is no pomp of a masala movie in this, the director has a concept which very subtly mocks the formula films and the shallow depth of today's Bollywood industry. The story as usual is unique with a couple of twist and turns. There are some moments where your sensibilities would not like to believe in the obvious coincidences like the invention of new technologies at the exact time when Dhanush needs help. Also the capability of the three main actors to keep their secret and fool so many people working in such close quarters with hardly ever faltering is a little too much to believe. But all in all, we can say that Balki knocked it out of the park, with his powerful script and even more powerful main leads.

What can we say that has already not been said about the immense talent of the legendary Amitabh Bachchan. He continues to prove that he is the definition of 'great acting' in Shamitabh too. Big B plays a role with his own first name and is impeccable as a burned out Bollywood struggler who is now an alcoholic. His crisp comic timing, that is inherent when we talk about him, is one of the highlights in the movie. Along with the sarcastic hilarity, a good dollop of jealousy is also a part of his character which he depicts with just the right amount of attitude and rage. To top it all, his song Piddly is also extremely comical and not because of the video that we have been seeing. The picturisation of the song in the movie will surely make you laugh at the working of the Hindi film industry.

Dhanush gives his second Bollywood performance even more powerful than his first movie, Raanjhanaa. His fabulous talent more than compensates for his average boy looks which he himself makes fun of in the movie. Just like in the movie, Dhanush is born to be an actor and he portrays the role of a mute superstar with a deep intensity. There is a scene in the movie where he and Amitabh are arguing  in a vanity van and there is a moment when Dhanush has to give a superior and proudy attitude which the actor nailed right to the T.

Newcomer Akshara Haasan is from what we call a film family with her parents being Sarika and Kamal Haasan and her sister Shruti Haasan. The young debutante seems to have given her best in the film. But there is still a rawness around her which makes her acting in some parts of the movie look unnatural and forced. The light-eyed beauty surely has film DNA in her blood and has shown her potential in the latter half of the movie. Her goth look in the movie proves that it is not important for her to be the mainstream glamour girl and she definitely gets points for this uniqueness. Though her chemistry with Dhanush was good, their lack of lovey-dovey scenes disappoint our notions of Hindi film love stories just a little.

The music of Shamitabh is not anything less than amazing as it is composed by the great Ilaiyaraaja. The songs are perfectly placed in the movie and are completely relatable to what is going with the story. No music piece and no spec of background score is out of place.

The movie makes you a Balki fan all over again if one has liked his previous geniuses like Cheeni Kum and Paa. With Big B in tow we think that this superhit hattrick is an example of another director-actor dream team in B-town. You should absolutely not miss out on this one if you like a good and powerful movie. With the intense and extraordinary acting of Dhanush and Amitabh, Shamitabh deals with the real life emotions and ambitions of a common man and keeps it true enough to connect exactly with the audiences. Go get yourself a good Bollywood dose this weekend.

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