Blood Money review

'I wish you were this large'
Cast: Kunal Kemu, Amrita Puri

Directed by Vishal Mahadkar

Rating: 0.25 *

Two images spring to mind looking at the above photograph: SRK and the movie ‘Titanic’. And while anyone who stretches his arms isn’t SRK, this film has a lot in common with a sinking ship. The title and the promos may suggest a crummy mix of ‘Wall Street’ and ‘Blood Diamond’ but it’s largely a snore fest often interrupted by a jolting background score. So let’s make this review a little less painful and attempt a graphic novel approach.

Soul sisters?
This annoyingly chirpy couple lands up in Cape Town, SA where the husband has nailed a top job with the prestigious Trinity Diamonds. For those can’t tell the husband from the wife in the above picture, Kunal (Kunal Khemu) is the one on the right along with his wife Arzoo (Amrita Puri). The two are densely in love and spend quality time narrating fairy tales to each other (Arzoo actually takes us through the unedited version of Hansel and Gretel!).

If we can charter a flight, can’t we afford suits that fit us?
Now for the ignorant, selling diamonds brings in money and bartering arms for diamonds brings in blood money. That said, Kunal spends little time in getting red-handed and rakes home tuckloads of the second word in the title. Next, a song that markets Cape Town tourism, diamond retailing and the idea that money (bloody or not) can buy happiness, designer clothes and extras to dance along with you and make you look comparatively better at it.

You can’t walk out of your own film!
A lot of bloody money means very little time for the wife. So in the next 36 scenes, Arzoo feeds Kunal’s dinner to the bin and then naps on the dinner table waiting for him to return. And when he does, he has obviously put his tainted money to ill use and their relationship drifts away.

See, I told you someone will show up to watch ‘Blood Money’
Are you still reading this? Look up, even Kunal Khemu is pointing at the neighbouring screen where you could catch ‘Kahaani’ again instead.

Where was ‘Waka Waka’ shot again?
Well, if you’re not going to give up, here’s the rest: Kunal is finally exposed to the dark secrets of the diamond trade and how his bosses fuel terrorism, bomb blasts and anything that is wicked enough to imagine red horns jutting out of their heads. It’s hardly surprising that Kunal’s ethical side which had been snoozing through this film, suddenly surfaces and he tries to make amends. A few bottles of ketchup squirted on the supporting cast ensures a suitable climax.

No mercy for bad acting
Kunal Khemu and Amrita Puri are ideal in character roles, heroine’s sister or hero’s insipid sidekick. But in the lead, two strugglers can’t make a crippled film walk. While the story and screenplay do little to keep you seated throughout, the dialogues surely deserve a Ghanta nomination. Following a bitter argument, Arzoo’s friend consoles her, saying, “Jhagde toh hote hi hain hone ke liye.” Then there are pearls of wisdom like, “Har deal mein do party hoti hain, ek buyer aur ek seller.” Quite like the two parties in the hall playing ‘Blood Money’: the projectionist and the usher.

Daag Achche Hain
While the gore quotient was restricted to one scene where a drill pokes into flesh, it was disturbing enough to justify including the word ‘blood’ in the title. The Bhatts have always taken pride in making decidedly B-grade movies but the music in their films have had a longer shelf life than the films itself. Here, it just sounds like re-hashed versions of their previous soundtracks and doesn’t translate into any humming on the way back from the movie.

The distributors of this film want my blood and their money
While Kunal Khemu's previous movies have cured constipation, this one can possibly remedy piles. Now you know what the title refers to.

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