Salman returns to action with `Wanted` (IANS Preview)
Known for his macho image, Salman Khan is back with a full-on actioner with Wanted - Dead or Alive releasing Friday. The actor promises mind-blowing fight sequences in the thriller directed by ace choreographer Prabhudheva.
There is a lot of action in the film and it is going to
be mind-blowing. Mind you, it has all been done by me and not by a body
double, Salman had said about Wanted.
We haven`t even used the usual cable work that much; so it`s been very difficult and I even pulled a hamstring during one of the running sequences that took three months to heal. But it has all been worth the effort, the 43-year-old actor said.
The film about gang wars and crime in the city is Salman`s return to an all-out action flick five years after his Garv - Pride And Honor.
Distributed by Sahara One Motion Pictures and Surinder Kapoor, Wanted has been produced by Boney Kapoor. It is the Bollywood debut-directorial venture of choreographer Prabhudheva, who had made the film in Tamil earlier.
`Wanted` has a good mix of romance, comedy, music, songs and, obviously, action. The film caters to all kinds of audiences but I won`t call it a commercial potboiler. It is much more than that, Kapoor said.
The producer has called the movie his most ambitious film till date. Prabhudheva too is anxious about his Bollywood entry as a filmmaker.
I`m nervous, I`m opening my account in Mumbai with this one and I`m quite anxious about the film`s fate. I`ll only breathe easy after it has been declared a success, he has said.
Also starring Ayesha Takia Azmi in the lead, Wanted is a remake of the 2006 Telugu film Pokiri, directed by Puri Jagannadh. It was later remade in Tamil with the same name by Prabhudheva.
The film also stars Mahesh Manjrekar, Asseem Merchant, Mahek Chhal and Prakash Raj along with Anil Kapoor in a special appearance.
Wanted is the story about Radhe (Salman), an arrogant hitman who works for Gani Bhai, the dreaded mafioso, on his own terms. Fearless in nature, Radhe single-handedly eliminates Gani Bhai`s enemies, making more enemies in the process.
A story about gang wars, where everybody wants the biggest piece of Mumbai by eliminating whoever gets in the way, it takes a turn when police commissioner Ashraf Khan vows to make the city crime-free and starts his campaign by arresting 200 criminals in a single day.
In a surprising twist, Radhe becomes the most wanted man in the list. The gangster wants him dead because he knows too much and he is wanted alive by the police because they want to know what he knows.
Apart from action, the film also marks Salman`s return as a singer after a decade. He has sung the Most Wanted Track for the thriller. He last crooned a `tapori` hit Chandi ki daal par in Hello Brother in 1999.
Industry insiders are pinning their hopes on Wanted to break the dry spell at the box office due to average footfalls courtesy gap-fillers and Ramzan.
`Wanted` only for Salman Khan fans (IANS Film Review )
Though National Award-winner Prakash Raj`s flamboyant villainy and Ayesha Takia`s endearing cuteness miraculously find a place in the plot, this is the hero`s vehicle like very few masala movies in recent times.
Salman Khan adapts his goon`s name Radhe from his eralier Tere Naam where he mixed violence with vulnerability in a heady brew. The mix in Wanted is far more brackish and tangy.
Wanted is an old-fashioned bone-cruncher with guns and goons creating a kind of orchestrated anarchy that was done with far more elan in Ghajini.
In Wanted, the violence is far cruder and guttural. The hero is on a sort of society-cleansing spree where the mode of conduct adopted by the villains and heroes become the same.
Director Prabhudeva retains the crude edges from the Telugu original Pokhiri. The villains are vicious and foul-mouthed and very often represent the kind of unfettered anti-socialism that can only be contained by the vigilanteism that Salman practices in the last-quarter of this blood-thirsty tale.
The plot is essentially about a one-man army who takes on a city filled with scums.
The villains are everywhere in Mumbai. It was Hyderabad in the Telugu original. But what difference does it make? Cities change, morality doesn`t. The predators are everywhere - in boats, trains, pubs and warehouses.
One khaki-clad foul-mouthed villain (played with despicable authenticity by Mahesh Manjrekar) even infiltrates a decent woman`s house and threatens to sleep with both mother and daughter.
Mercifully the daughter, Ayesha, has Salman for a boyfriend. But the poor police commissioner (Govind Namdeo, in a positive role for a change) is unlucky with his daughter. She gets kidnapped and raped by the arch-villain. It`s a mean world out there...And thank god for the screen hero.
While Vinod Khanna is wasted, Manoj Pawa`s role as the overgrown boy-next-door doesn`t quite fit into the scheme of things. Prakash Raj as the villain gives celluloid diabolism an interesting new twist. He definitely looks menacing.
His confrontation with the police commissioner is written with that polished panache that brings a twist to pulp fictions.
But make no mistake. This is a made-to-order film for Salman. As a one-man army, he springs into every frame with that trademark mix of a bored swagger and agile comicality. His romantic moments with Ayesha have a lived-in credibility except when the songs take over.
Strictly for fans of action flicks, and Salman...in that order.