Tiger Zinda Hai review: Director makes this tiger roar
A homage to Salman Khan's indomitable powers of hero-giri
Friday 22 December 2017
Tiger Zinda Hai
Ali Abbas Zafar
Salman Khan, Katrina Kaif, Sajjad Delafrooz, Girish Karnad, Kumud Mishra, Paresh Rawal
When did this Tiger ever stop roaring? Well...okay, Tubelight didn't quite work . Salmaniacs didn't want to watch him as a whimpy whiny crybaby hero. The message is hammered loud and clear in Tiger Zinda Hai(TZH), a homage to Salman Khan's indomitable powers of hero-giri. From the first frame to the last blast, this is a fanboy director making sure that every moment of the narrative is paisa vasool for the Salman fans.
Tiger Zinda Hai is a 2 ½ hour homage to Salman Khan's superstardom. In the cinema of the Southern superstars like Rajinikanth or even Mammoothy (see his latest release Masterpiece where in almost every frame the star is eulogized) it is a common practice to extol the virtues of the Man Of the moment, to the extent that the other members of the cast appear to be afterthoughts.
Almost every supporting actor in TZH- and that includes the diligent Katrina Kaif -is an extension of Salman Khan's superstardom, his or existence defined by how much he or she hero-wosrhips our intelligence officer Avinash Singh Rathod a.k.a Tiger. The lengthy eulogy gets tedious only when the actors pause to tell us what a daunting one-man army our hero is.
And since that happens quite often, we are frequently asked to hold our horses, while the compliments flow and the speed breakers are served up. Once those are out of the way TZH is a lot of fun to watch. The sheer silliness of a one-man army mowing a mayhem across terrorism, at a time when heroes in cinema across the world are exposing their vulnerability more than their virility(see the haunting Call Me By Your Name to know what I mean) is laughable.
So is the attempt to infuse a political urgency to an endeavour that is clearly on a one-point mission: no, not save the tiger, but celebrate the hero's macho-giri until it hurts. And I don't mean the muscles.
To his credit director packs in quite a punch. The narrative takes us through a collage of quirky, appealing locations where some really well-choreographed action scenes are shot with breathless zeal. Full marks to cinematographer Marcin Laskawiec and action director Tom Struthers, not to mention the pulse-pounding yet discreet background score by Julian Packiam , for uplifting the viewers' gaze to a level comparable with the Hollywood franchise.
A thought, though. Are we so short of international-calibre talent that we need to import important technicians to make our onscreen action look competitive and competent? And does Salman's stardom really need a boost? A no to the first question and a yes to the second. Salman's superstardom is like a pitcher of brackish brew whose bitter hue is best tasted when recycled with gusto.
TZH looks like many other anti-terror films including Baby and Naam Shabana. And if you really want to see a taut intensely-felt take on the same plot about the kidnapping of nurses in Iraq, try the Malayam film Take Off.
Admittedly the action sequences in TZH are better staged than in the first Tiger film. Except for the Iranian actor Sajjad Delfarooz who stands out as the terror mastermind, the splendid supporting cast is criminally wasted. It's sad to see actors like Girish Karnad, Paresh Rawal, Kumud Mishra and Angad Bedi hanging around only to make sure the leading man looks his Sunday best. Still these actors ferret out their moments from a script that allows no breathingspace for anything but comicbook vigour.
As for Katrina Kaif she remains as deadpan as ever. Thank God some things never change. But she's surprisingly effective in the action scenes , more so than she was in a similar role in Kabir Khan's Phantom, or for that matter in Ek Tha Tiger.
As for her chemistry with Salman, his eyes melt like a icrecream cone left out in the sun, each time she's around. Will someone make an intense love story with the two?
Tiger Zinda Hai review: 3 stars
Reactions from Social Media:
Ananya Bhattacharya @ananya116
#TigerZindaHai: Bhai on screen. Whistles and applause. So many films. So many years. The @BeingSalmanKhan craze is yet to fade!
RAJ BANSAL @rajbansal9
As expected ...the crowds ... the craze ... the madness begins early in the morning with huge crowds witnessed across india at multiplexes/ single screens showing @TigerZindaHai #TigerZindaHai @BeingSalmanKhan @yrf .. packed morning shows everywhere.
#TigerZindaHai Must watch movie Aisa movie hai tum baith ka dekh nhi shakta Khada ho kaar Seeti marna hi padega There is some Scenes in #TZH will blow you away
Navneet Mundhra @navneet_mundhra
This 'TIGER' is not only more blazing, belligerent and blistering but also has oodles of gravitas and grey matter.. trifle over-the-top and simplistic but amazingly absorbing till interval !!!! Picture abhi baaki hai.. #TigerZindaHai @BeingSalmanKhan
Rummana Ahmed @reachrummana
#TigerZindaHai is super! This one makes for a repeat watch
~ Omkar ~ @Omi_Tweeets
Interval #TigerZindaHai BEST ACTION MOVIE EVER MADE IN BOLLYWOOD. Salman’s every dialogue and move is fetching whistles. Katrina is so beautiful both with face and action.
Bolly Roast @Bollyroast
#TigerZindaHai has Opened to Packed Houses even on Non holiday Superb!!!
#TigerZindaHai @DMmovies - mind blowing action sequences..both Salman & Katrina are seen doing daredevil stunts..Katrina doesn’t have much screen time but can be seen during crucial moments of the film kicking some asses.
Jb Bhagoda Met Sejal @Being_Devil53
#TigerZindaHai only one word MINDBLOWING film.. Never seen before in bollywood.. Extraordinary background score... Full on action n entertainment.. goosbumps in whole muvi.. strongly recommended.. go watch n enjoy..
Sumit kadel @SumitkadeI
#TigerZindaHai First half- Disappointing, Salman Entry scene very weak, action average, story line - Funny , too much of English Dialogues. I hope Second half is good enough.
#TigerZindaHai blockbuster loads of action by one and only our sallu Bhai ..
Manveer Gurjar @imanveergurjar
Tiger is back! Lets watch n celebrate @BeingSalmanKhan performance n zinda dilli on this TIGER ZINDA HAI DAY ! Love n luck BhaiJaan....shine on #TigerZindaHai