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JATT JAMES BOND (Punjabi) - Thankfully not a silly comedy but could have adapted the inspired plot in a better way avoiding the routine elements. (Review By Bobby Sing)

27 Apr, 2014 | Movie Reviews / 2014 Releases / Inspired Movies (Alphabetical) / J

Beginning on a positive note, thankfully this time it is just not a silly forceful comedy, woven around a thin plot as per the usual pattern followed by the current Punjabi film-makers. So JATT JAMES BOND first of all deserves to be given some extra marks because of this important display of courage and taking the risk in a project made on a big scale. Admittedly, though the film is not a great thriller or a thorough entertainer right till the end, due to many visible loopholes in the execution and many avoidable routine features. Yet the effort cannot be ignored having some bright merits too and therefore can easily be rated as one of the better Punjabi films of the recent times for sure.
Taking on the praise-worthy features first, the film has three well defined lead characters having an emotional angle associated with their individual story too and not just some known names playing it pretty loud as usual. The script revolves around a decent plot (though inspired) which has got the elements of thrill, suspense and action all together giving it the much required weight as desired. Few of the songs in its soundtrack are worthy enough to be enjoyed as individual tracks. And it has one of best background scores I have ever noticed in a Punjabi film in the recent years. But above all here we have few seasoned actors performing their given roles effectively (including Gippy Grewal & Gurpreet Ghuggi) with the surprise act coming from the well-known Yashpal Sharma playing the poor labourer, brilliantly.
JJB begins well with a shoot-out sequence (reminding you of the simple serial killer in the hit Hindi film KAHAANI) and then continues delivering all the seen before stuff in a routine manner for quite a long time for more than half an hour. There are just introductions, gags and songs in these initial reels and the film actually begins once the trio decides to do the one time robbery after almost 40 minutes. But due to this interesting twist the next 30 minutes become pretty engrossing and the viewer enjoys feeling that excitement along with the three friends committing the crime, before the screen says interval.
Post intermission it all seems well for about 10-15 minutes, but then the script starts running out of ideas and moves back to the repetitive pattern of showcasing love drama, revengeful action and sad songs as the fixed norm of a Punjabi film. Due to which the second half starts stretching to an alarming extent leading to restlessness among the viewers and one wishes to jump on to its last reels as soon as possible. Luckily the lost excitement is regained in the final 15 minutes and the director successfully manages to end it all on a satisfactory note. As a result, no one walks out of the hall, with any big complaints and that certainly deserves to be treated as an achievement looking at the current scenario of Punjabi Cinema.
In short, one might not be able to call JATT JAMES BOND a great movie whole heartedly due to many visible limitations, but you cannot rate it as something mediocre or below average either because of its many noticeable merits.
Now coming on to its weak points I would also like to mention few humble suggestions as the next step required in Punjabi Cinema, post this appreciable move made in JATT JAMES BOND (and these points include spoilers).

1. An opening slide says that the film is based on ‘Real life events, Well almost”. Whereas actually the basic plot of robbing a small bank and finding huge amount of money lying in the locker instead of the expected small amount is all inspired from Don Siegal’s great thriller CHARLEY VARRICK made in 1973. Interestingly this English flick too was based on John Reese’s novel titled “The Looters”.
Now where the western adaptation beautifully plays with this idea of undisclosed money lying in the bank belonging to a local don, there JATT JAMES BOND doesn’t explain the exciting plot very clearly and keeps stressing on the other ingredients in the story post intermission. And as I felt, the writers could have materialized on this one point in particular in a more entertaining manner, wherein a bank is being used as a private safe by the local M.L.A. through his terrifying influence and hence they cannot even declare the actual money looted above the small official amount, hilariously.
2. Zarine Khan was brought in from Mumbai to play the usual heroine in the film. But I simply couldn’t understand, what was the need of roping her in spending the extra amount? The lady makes no contribution whatsoever in the film at all and its just seems to be the producer’s or director’s fascination with Bollywood’s glamour that might have been the reason of Zarine being there in the film, doing nothing.
3. At the execution level, the major sequence of bank robbery is shown quite childishly in the film and its only the trio’s performance which doesn’t let you think over it in a logical manner.
4. Further in order to take the Punjabi Cinema to the next level, now its time that the lead actors, who happen to be professional singing stars too, start coming out of their ‘singer image’ and begin taking the art of cinema more seriously. Because, one cannot make a good project, if he has the film as well as an audio album too at the back of his mind while performing.
In clear words, what’s actually happening is that these lead actors/singers are acting in the project as actors, but along with that also wish to record six new songs to be featured in the film, fulfilling the desire/demand of releasing their audio album too mixing the two streams.
As a result what we get to see is, many deliberate, unrelated songs coming at regular intervals of the film, hampering its overall pace and impact drastically. Now it might be the producers or the singing actor who pressurizes the director to do so. But the point is that its time that Punjabi Cinema instantly realizes the silly mistake and gets out of this ‘two purpose serving strategy’ in order to make some quality cinema for the starving audience. Especially with actors such as Gippy Grewal and Diljit who have evidently shown an exceptional growth in their last few films.
5. Moreover regarding the music, buying few readymade tracks available with some known names is another norm which the makers need to get rid of soon. Since it’s a movie requiring some specially written and recorded songs as per the script’s demand and not a video coverage where anything can be added anywhere as per the director/producer’s own will. And the point gets proved when you get to hear a Rahat Fateh Ali Khan in JJB using both Hindi lines along with Punjabi quite weirdly.
6. Pointing towards the fixed format followed in Punjabi Cinema, its time that they stop spending time on long introductions in the beginning, satisfying the ego of every single artist featuring in it leading to boredom. The narration should come to the point as soon as possible and valuable 30-40 minutes should not be wasted on such irrelevant content as seen in the initial reels of JJB.
Plus it’s quite horrible to see the same old 70s sequence in almost every film wherein few goons starts teasing the heroine all of a sudden only to get beaten by the hero making an obvious entry. So for God’s sake please find any other way to display your star’s heroism now saving us from this repeated torture!
7. Lastly, let’s get over with the ages old ‘mixed fruit juice recipe’ adding a love angle, few drunkards, a family rivalry, many comical gags and few songs into each and every film, irrespective of what its main plot is all about. Punjabi audience have proved their intelligence by rejecting all the poor films made in the last year and now they urgently should be served with something path breaking and worth watching soon.
In other words, I wish to see a Punjabi film which asks for a remake in Hindi and other languages, instead of we making mediocre remakes of all other films.
Now no doubt, JATT JAMES BOND does break some preset ground as per the chosen subject and treatment by its talented team. However since it keeps adding the same old clichéd elements too into the interesting proceedings (carelessly), the end-result sadly falls short of being outstanding in honest terms. Still the film fortunately remains an above average entertainer in totality and thus needs to be encouraged by the viewers too reciprocating the thoughtful move. Plus I am sure Rohit Jugraj would soon be coming with his next Punjabi venture as a more solid, focused product taking care of all the weaker points of JATT JAMES BOND, wisely.
Rating : 2.5 + 0.5 / 5 (With the additional 0.5 for its fine background score and the courageous effort of making a thriller moving ahead of a typical comedy.)

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27 Apr 2014 / Comment ( 0 )
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