Movie Reviews

Y! Meta Review: Agent Vinod

Agent Vinod in action'Agent Vinod' is not all bad, in fact it starts with a lot of promise but Sriram Raghavan's previous works had raised our expectations. For once, we prayed that this thriller will not just be style over substance but Raghavan disappoints. Raja Sen in his review says that the film is just not 'clever enough':

If only Agent Vinod were a video game. It has all the hallmarks of a classic: from explosive wall-to-wall action to various levels of globetrotting mayhem, from challenging moments of hand-to-hand combat and clue-hunting to an eclectic slew of fascinating side characters, from a helluva background score to, quite vitally, the fact that it doesn't end where it should and instead keeps giving the protagonist more to do.

Alas, 'Agent Vinod' is not a video game and a film demands a coherent narrative. Like Kaveree Bamzai points out, there are a lot of elements that work:

Keeping a light tone is the toughest thing to do for a filmmaker. One wrong step and the laughs turn into sniggers. For most part Agent Vinod manages to be cool. After a rocky drive following a slam bang shoot out, Saif (who is Vinod, Agent Vinod) turns to his beautiful companion and says: Aasha hai aapki yatra sukhad rahi. When he's about to be shot, he asks his tormentor for a thanda beer. And in between getting shot at and shooting, he tells his rival agent (Kareena Kapoor, folks), while shoveling spaghetti down his gullet: Kuch paane ke liye kuch khaana padta hai. Super stuff, right? Especially if it's shot across some of the world's most intriguing countries: Russia, Morocco, Pakistan, Somalia. And especially when Kareena and Saif look like they are dressed from the season's coolest fashion catalogue, complete with Hermes handbags and Burberry scarves.

Unfortunately the one wrong step (make that multiple) costs the film dearly. Rajeev Masand applauds the brilliance of the "3-minute shootout scene set in a seedy East European motel" but is quick to mention:

It's moments like these — sadly too few and far between — that bring a smile to your face during the two hours and forty-odd minutes of this disappointing film. Director Sriram Raghavan ,who gave us such taut thrillers as Ek Hasina Thi and Johnny Gadaar previously, injects Agent Vinod with so many varied influences that it never finds its own distinct identity.

Anupama Chopra says that while "there is enough to admire in Agent Vinod", it's still not enough:

But when I walk into a film called Agent Vinod, what I want, more than anything else, is an adrenalin rush. The breathlessness that kicks in when you're watching Ethan Hunt hang off the Burj Khalifa building in Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol or the staggering hyper-realistic chase sequences in any of the Bourne movies or gritty action of the new Bond films. Agent Vinod doesn't deliver on that. This is a frantically busy movie. There are so many locations, characters and twists that you are guaranteed to get confused and yet, you also get restless because the movement doesn't build a sense of urgency. The plot plods along, especially in the first half.

You can read Yahoo! Reviews here: Rummana's review and Kunal's review.

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