It is no big secret that in the entertainment business, the secret to a long and successful run is the ability to constantly re-invent oneself. Salman Khan has been one of those actors who have been able to keep ahead of the changing times. But his indulgence in taking risks has given mixed results - sometimes a failure as in the Subhash Ghai directed 'Yuvraaj', or a runaway success as with the Prabhu Deva directed 'Wanted'. Ek Tha Tiger, the first film that the actor has committed to Yash Raj Films, is one such risk.
Ek Tha Tiger follows 'Bodyguard', the second biggest grosser in Bollywood after Aamir Khan's '3 Idiots'. The movie is produced by Aditya Chopra and is directed by Kabir Khan, who has already made his mark as a director through 'Kabul Express' and 'New York'. Above all, it brings together two of the hottest stars in Bollywood – Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif. But the result unfortunately is not up to the mark.
'Tiger', as the character played by Salman Khan is fondly called by his RAW colleagues, is a sort of super-spy, drawn in the lines of James Bond. While the trailer of the movie promised an action-romance extravaganza, Ek Tha Tiger has failed to get the mix right. The theme of the movie itself isn't anything new as Saif Ali Khan's 'Agent Vinod' was set on similar lines. And although Salman Khan is essentially known as an action star, his burly frame doesn't go too well with the slick fight and chase sequences that spy movies demand.
The chemistry seems missing between Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif, despite being romantically linked off screen. As 'Zoya', the Pakistani ISI agent, who falls for RAW's 'Tiger', she fails again, to hit the right expressions that the situations call for. But Katrina Kaif has proved that she is a tough 'Kat' through the fast paced action sequences and stunts that she has performed in the movie.
One of the highlights of a spy movie is the genre's own unique style of cinematography that has evolved through a continuous process over the years. Unfortunately, Aseem Mishra, who has handled the camera for Ek Tha Tiger, fails to replicate it the way it should be and hasn't been able to bring much innovation either. The numerous stunt moves made during the different action sequences would have been more impressive had it been shot and presented in a better manner.
Music is not good, in the sense that it fails to pitch in with the right kind of emotion as demanded by the movie’s situation. Neither the original songs composed by Sohail Sen nor those composed by the guest composers Sajid-Wajid have succeeded in being a plus point to Ek Tha Tiger.
The location of the movie is spread in different places around the globe, but the focus is limited to just the two big stars Salman and Katrina. Ranvir Shorey has little to do as 'Gopi', a fellow RAW agent, but the talented actor has made his presence felt through the minimal dialogues and importance his character has been given in the unimpressive screenplay penned together by Kabir Khan and Neelesh Misra.
Other than the three, the only other character of prominence is that of 'Shenoy', the boss of Tiger, played by Girish Karnad. The role of 'Shenoy', as the mentor of 'Tiger' who eventually turns out to be his biggest enemy, has been grossly downplayed in the film, as the focus always remains just on Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif.
It was the intention of Kabir Khan to make a spy movie based on the lines of western brands like James Bond and the Bourne series. However, producer Aditya Chopra seemed reluctant to completely do away with the surreal romanticism that Yash Raj Films is globally recognised for. But both parties seem to have agreed that the highlight of the movie is to be the pairing of Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif. The end product is a weird mix of all three attempts, which sees a Bollywood style love story that has been picturised Hollywood style, with a hero and heroine who share no chemistry during the entire time.
In term of collections, Ek Tha Tiger would surely bring in immense profits and would be declared a financial success. But what remains to be seen is how the fans are going to take to the new avatar of Salman Khan in this Aditya Chopra film.
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