Lets get it straight. Despite all the hype and publicity around it coupled with the humongous expectations and the striking opening of the movie this weekend, Tees Maar Khan fails to work and leaves you with only a few moments to laugh. Providing complete entertainment in 2-3 hours is a difficult task to do and very few movies in the recent past have been able to do so, having set aside the fact that entertainment is again a very relative term and its more like to each his own. Having said that, films like 3 Idiots have successfully managed to keep you hooked for even 3 hours and provide a wholesome entertainment. There is a thin line between making a hardcore masala movie containing a formula-with-tadka and a buffoon ride of a movie. Tees Maar Khan does not care where it crosses over the line in the disguise of entertainment. I have never been against brainless comic capers where you can go, leave your brains, reason and rationale at home and be a part of a laughathon for a couple of hours. But unfortunately, Tees Maar Khan fails to live upto that too.
Tees Maar Khan, surprisingly, doesn’t match up to the standards set by Farah Khan with her previously directed films. Both Main Hoon Na and Om Shanti Om were smarter, funnier films that benefitted from the writer-director’s irreverent humour. But for this film she hands over the writing responsibilities to Shirish and Ashmit Kunder who appear to have drained the film of any smartness. Buffoonery reaches its greatest form and absurdity completely eludes the magic of masala movies Farah is known for. Even if you suspend your disbelief, TMK is hard to relish and Farah definitely doesnt get it right this time around. In the year gone by, there have been many comic capers which have failed and some like Housefull which have had highest quotients of illogicality but still made you laugh for the time you were in the theater. TMK, on the contrary, manages to do that only on certain occasions and comes out as a half-baked attempt with poor writing.
Adapted from the 1966 movie After the Fox, TMK completely eliminates the magic that was a part of the Peter Sellers' original version. Firstly, Shirish and Ashmith Kunder should seriously consider not writing scripts if they have to copy good old movies and rape them. Kunder will be directing Joker next with Akshay Kumar, I wonder where he has ripped that script from. No wonder why Shahrukh Khan denied to do Joker and it ultimately resulted in Farah separating ways with him and making a film with Akshay, and also launching her own company with this film just to prove her point. Sorry Farah, but you failed miserably! You would have rather been loyal to SRK rather than taking digs on him all through TMK. Not only that, she takes digs on every other possible disability (which maybe funny at times if done in good taste) or any kind of race. The name of the dark skinned guy and him being caught because of his white teeth, a leucoderma patient taken to be a white guy, 3 gay guys being repeatedly made fun of as being girls and dressed in pink, conjoined twins speaking in unison and flying in a conjoined aircraft, a bad dig on Manoj Night Shyamalan as a failed filmmaker and stuff like that is not in good taste and evokes only cheap laughs. Farah makes a movie which she is most comfortable with and her style and treatment is totally effortless, specially during the enjoyable first half but writing falls apart in the second half and the movie falls flat, drags slowly to its conclusion and feel you a serious loss of content. To make up for that, she ends up falling prey to making use of buffoonery and repetitive jokes which dont work either.
Any plusses? Yes, there are a few. Akshaye Khanna's character (Aatish Kapoor) although based out of taking digs on SRK and Manoj Kumar is actually the best written character in the movie. The character of the oscar-hungry filmstar stands out and makes you laugh. The fast pacing of the first half along with Farah's treatment sets the tricks of a heist straight and get to the point fast. She manages to build a entertaining first half turning simple situations to larger than life, a flair typical with masala movies. The song numbers are brilliantly done and get you into the TMK world instantly. But the bizarre of the proceedings gets to you and you feel like leaving the movie halfway, for instance Akshay's sidekick trying to bribe the sun to move in a different direction. These are small instances where Main Hoon Naa and OSO scored way over TMK. They had numerous magical moments which made these films author-backed, entertaining and lovable. TMK, nevertheless has few slapstick positives, but on the whole, doesnt deliver what it promises.
Akshay Kumar tries hard to breathe some life into the character but the illogicality is too much in the face kind of, and it does not allow you to see it as a masala movie. TMK's character is under-written, his tricks unexplained, his dialogues repetitive and his nature is confused. It seems he is just a conman at one instance, and that he has soft heart at other instance without any proper transition. Katrina Kaif is totally wasted in a short role and doesnt perform anywhere except in the Sheila ki Jawani song. The only enjoyable character is played by Akshaye Khanna. He has a short role but performs it naturally making everything funny. Special mention of the scene in which TMK offers him the role in his movie at his house and the sequence towards the end where he sings 'Mere Desh Ki Dharti' after performing the robbery. All other side characters are totally over the top and unbearably non-hilarious. Cinematography is nothing unusual, dialogues are witty for one time, not for repetition. Editing is crisp in first half but bad in second half. Every other technical aspect is strictly average. Music is already a success with the world-wide popularity of Sheila ki jawani. Even the Wallah Wallah track is good. Both the songs are done extremely well and are sure to pull the audiences. Katrina scorches the screen in the numbers and looks exceptionally stunning, backed by Farah and her innate style of showcasing her heroines.
On the whole, TMK has a lot of shortcomings. Its supposed to provide complete entertainment which does not happen and its not even a tribute to the old-school cinema. The buffoonery is not what Farah is known for. Due to the Christmas weekend, the movie has opened big and the collections are huge but its sure to fall apart with the word of mouth and the resentment against it. Dabangg managed to pull crowds for weeks on end because it had a certain flair clapworthy moments in it but TMK lacks that. Its not as bad as Golmaal 3 but its not recommended either. Go to the theater if you are totally bored!
Rating - 1.5/5