Why wannabe thrillers don’t work anymore

With ‘Agent Vinod’ managing to impress very few, we wonder if the genre has been jinxed. Find out

There was a time when anything futuristic tickled the curious mind and offered a form and flesh to the unknown. And while the values of VFX have progressed by epic proportions, we still end up with duds like Agent Vinod, Players and Game. This brings us to question whether the concept of a thriller is to just look like one or is there a deeper reasoning to it? Lately, wearing fancy suits and skipping across the world trying to find clues to a global propaganda seems to be the ultimate recipe. Don’t believe us? Check out our reviews of the big-budget turkeys that have subscribed to this ultimate formula for failure in recent times.


It's a Game!
Each time Bollywood tries to ape the west, it twists its ankle and trips over a puddle of poop, face-first. And Game is such a poop-drenched, wannabe-whodunit thriller that on watching, you might want to find out who's done this movie, why and couldn't he just light a bonfire with the disposable money used to produce it?
The movie begins as billionaire Kabir Malhotra (Anupam Kher) invites an odd mix of people from across the globe to visit his personal Greek island of Samos for a chance to enrich their sorry lives. As the recipients scan their letters, the name Samos pops up often and can spark a sudden craving for the savoury snack (Samosa!). A tip: keep munchies accessible. Read more


Desi versions of Hollywood thrillers are like ‘first copy’ bootlegs from Thailand. They initially look approximately the same but later the threads begin to wriggle out. So when director duo, Abbas-Mustan took on ‘The Italian Job’, Benny Hill became Neil Nitin Mukesh, everyone double-crossed and obvious lines were exchanged with a grim face. Now, tough guys don’t snigger until they’ve outwitted someone or unless they’re delirious like Mogambo! But our bad boys are, firstly, not all boys and their badness is mostly restricted to the leather jackets rented from MJ’s ‘Bad’ music video. So looking grim is a ritual observed throughout the audience. Read more

Don 2

Don 2
The Don franchise is back in all its stammering, self-praising and lopsided grinning glory. Living up to its prequel, this one is high on slick quotient and has many meticulously choreographed stunts. The only grouse: Don has become cockier than ever and loves rambling lines that narrate his characteristic traits in third person- 'Don ke dushmano ko…' Yawn. Read more

Science fiction is an oxymoron. And when this genre is sprinkled with moronic humour and logic takes a beating from hell, you know you've punched your tickets for 'R.A.One'. With metallic blue and red costumes right out of Falguni Pathak's wardrobe, this out-of-console experience offers laughs, dances and androids touching humans in more ways than considered socially acceptable.  Insert coin to read more. Read more

Agent Vinod
LIC Agent Vinod
The best way to diffuse a bum is through butt crunches. Unless one is referring to the Hinglisized word for a bomb. And the much-awaited dhamaka that this thriller hoped to detonate at the box office might just be diffused once you read this review.  Despite miraculous leaps in production values, spy thrillers in Bollywood end up looking like Chinese equivalents of western products. And here, the characters are even stereotyped to the extent of detectives wearing trench coats and moles being obvious, shifty-eyed and literally uncomfortable in their own skin. So let’s just say foreign locales, weapons to annihilate the world, designer suits and not-so-excruciating interrogations don’t cumulatively justify ‘Agent Vinod’ as a thrilling movie-watching experience.  Read more

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