Film Review: Singham Returns: Roars Louder But Lacks Bite

Singham Game 05

Flying cars, corrupt politicians, a lecherous god-man and an upright policeman: put these ingredients together and the combination would be the crux of a thousand films. So ‘Singham Returns’ could very well have been renamed 80s Formula Returns and meant exactly the same thing.

Beefed up policeman Bajirao Singham (Ajay Devgn) carries his anger forward from the last episode, to new enemies. He has theoretically moved to Mumbai, though in different scenes he is also in Goa and other small towns. But he carries his frown with him wherever he goes. It’s hard to tell when he’s happy, angry, sad or feeling romantic as he scowls at the annoying god-man (Amol Gupte), at the irritating politician (Zakir Hussain), at the preachy mentor (Anupam Kher) and the maybe-love-maybe-not love of his life Avani (Kareena Kapoor).

The god-man-politician combo hurt Singham where it hurts him most, in maligning the reputation of the clean-as-a-whistle Mumbai police, and an angry Singham makes it his mission to expose the corruption and restore damaged reputations.
Accompanied by his core team of cops, Singham cracks the case and exposes this nexus mostly with brute force. Many cars are blown up; extras shot in broad daylight and in director Rohit Shetty’s trademark style, there are at least two lengthy action set pieces.

Preachy in several parts, simplistic in its deliverance of the social message, ‘Singham Returns’ does not bring anything new to the world of cinema. The story is fairly predictable, the music unimaginative and the dialogues, often forced and in poorly spoken Marathi, are sound like they were written in half an hour.

Rohit Shetty, known for his zany or action packed films, delivers neither. One can’t imagine why another flying car would be interesting to watch anymore. And there are at least three indulgent Michael Bay-style slow motion group shots of Devgn walking which gets tiresome.
Devgn, also the film’s producer, is stiff but plays the textbook version of the angry middle-aged man. His dialogue delivery remains poor and he doesn’t try to bring any new shades this character. The usually effervescent Kareena Kapoor does add comedy to an otherwise drab script but her part is too uni-dimensional for her to bite into.

Singham Returns is a noisy film that will appeal mainly to fans of Devgn and ‘Singham’.

Rating: **

Udita Jhunjhunwala

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