In 2016 we have the soul sucking sex comedies, Kya Kool Hai Ham 3, Mastizade and Great Grand Masti. We also saw Love Games which was going for deliciously perverse but was just unintentionally comic. Nothing can match these movies for sheer awfulness. But you do not need me to tell you that.. Instead, let us talk about the year’s biggest disappointments of BOX OFFICE. Films that came with expectations and then failed to deliver. These for me were the epic downers of the year.
5) Rock On 2
Eight years ago we fell in love with a rag-tag rock band named magic with Adi, Joe and KD or killer drummer. I was excited to see these characters back on screen but Rock On 2 was a damp squib. The sequel was not actively bad but it was just so bland that it became impossible to care. Debutante director Shujaat Saudagar was hobbled by the convoluted script by Abhishek Kapoor and Pawali Chaudhari. The action moved between Mumbai and Meghalaya. The landscapes were stunning but the logic was limp. And even though composers Shankar, Ehsaan and Loy created few high notes, the sound track was not the patch on the original, There just was not enough magic here.
4) Flying Jatt
The film presented what is probably the world’s first sikh superhero in film. A man whose costume is stitched by his mom, and in between feats of courage he needs to stop at sabzi mandi to pickup lauki for mamma. This could have been a lot of fun but director and writer Remo D’Souza made an insufferable film. The biggest offender was WWE wrestler Nathan Jones, with his patent dialogue “I have a black soul”, rooh meri kali hai. It was utterly exhausting.
Mirzaya was a miracle of craft and technique. The cinematography by Pawel Dyllus was breathtaking. The visual effects production design and costumes were striking and the music by Shankar, Ehsaan and Loy was memorable. Every frame was painstakingly constructed. But the story and characters were so inert that the film never came to life. Despite the obvious hard work that was poured into the project, Mirzaya remained a beautiful lifeless manniquin of BOX OFFICE.
2) Baar-Baar Dekho
This movie was a mistifying experience. It started with a lovely montage of a grand romance with a chartbursting song Kaala Chashma. The problem was everything in between. The film was essentially the cinematic equivalent of a hallmark Card with all these characters imparting life lessons. So wise pandit says ‘badi badi baato par nahi choti baato par dhyaan do’. And a sagely professor of mathematics declared ‘ balance ke begair koi equation perfect nahi hoti.‘ Can you take any film seriously in which Sidharth Malhotra is a professor of Vedic mathematics? Despite the gloss and beauty, this film remained desperately flawed. It was a slog to sit through it even once.
1) Mohen Jodaro
I am sure that the director Ashutosh Gwariker started Mohen Jodaro with a grand vision. A sort of Amar Chitrakatha meets Three hundred meets Bahubali. The film had talent and sweat and skill. And it was heart-breaking to see this labour of love turned into an unintentional comedy. The head dresses that the characters were wearing made it impossible to focus on the narratives. The evil pradhan of Mohen Jidaro wore this gigantic one with horns. ‘Chaani’ the leading lady was partial to this ridiculous feathered contraption. And even the regular citizens seemed weighed down by all that weights on their heads. The film was destroyed between been bewildering and just bad. Even the industrial sincerity of Hritikh Roshan could not save it from an unmitigated disaster of BOX OFFICE.