Directed by: Tigmanshu Dhalia
Starring: Saif Ali Khan, Jimmy Shergill, Sonakshi Sinha, Gulshan Grover and Chunky Pandey
All images courtesy of: http://www.glamsham.com
Honestly speaking, if it were not for Paan Singh Tomar being my favourite film of 2012, Bullett Raja would have probably got far more of a pasting than I am about to give it. To be fair, Bullett Raja is like a bruised apple where one side is punctured but the rest of the apple is pretty perfect. There are some wonderful sequences here which are very engaging, there is fun dialogue and a very dark sense of humour that is applied with perfect timing when least expected. There is also a healthy dose of seemingly unintentional homo-eroticism which gives BR a nineties buddy movie feel.
Sadly, BR seems determined to revive less desirable features from the 90’s too – songs that aren’t catchy are shoe horned into the action and totally disrupt the rhythm and feel of the film, as well as a very crazy second half where it feels like three different films are taking place simultaneously. There are also lots of logistical errors which would be forgiven if the film had not gone to pains to establish how much creative liberty it wants to employ. As usual, my shorter and tighter screenplay mantra applies tenfold here.
Performance wise, despite blond highlights and a bronzer palooza, metrosexual Khan does hit some sincere notes as Raja, though this is more accidental than by design. Interestingly, it is when Khan does little that he finds some truth in his character. More successful is Shergill who makes light work of his part and steals the show. Sinha clocks in and does her regular 100 crore shift with two songs and four scenes whilst Jamwal is suitably cocky and model esque to work some Ray Bans and tight jeans with panache.
Bullett Raja is yet another film to file under the squandered potential heading – if only Dhulia had not tried to woo the devils of commercialism and stuck to his guns (no pun intended), this would have been a very good film and achieved the wider audience it desperately seems to want. Whilst there is no denying Dhulia’s earthy style is not for everyone, there is no reason for him to lose it to score in a commercial sphere as his previous work demonstrates. Bullett Raja is not one to go out of your way for but could have been much worse. You may wish to revisit Paan Singh Tomar instead…