Review - 8x10 Tasveer: leaves no strong memories
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Nope. There's no hope of anything to do with Akshay Kumar ever being unglamorous or non-stylized. If Nagesh Kukunoor can't do it, no one can. Given that 8 x 10 Tasveer is a thriller, maybe the whole super-heroic personality accorded to the main lead is very intentional. But, it borders disbelief so closely that the film feels more like comedy and doesn't strike awe at all. And I'm not yet talking of the superpowers he has.
That Jai (Akshay Kumar) can look into the past has to be accepted as an assumption. The weird mumbo-jumbo provided as explanation is only to be ignored. Once you do that, it's an interesting concept and opens a world of opportunities. Nagesh's use of his protagonist's ability gives the regular "who dunnit" a very nice flavor.
Jai realizes things bit by bit and with him the audience becomes aware of what had happened. This slow unfolding adds to the curiosity. And yet somehow there's no connection between Jai and me as an audience. There's a distance which stays through the movie and doesn't let me get too involved. I blame the over-dramatization for that. Either the hero or the villain resurrecting like he is The Terminator is just too 80-90ish for me and thus exasperating. "Die already" you feel like yelling from the audience. This reminds me of the "fall already" that a viewer actually yelled in the theater at the never-ending, pointless jump that Jai makes in one of the early sequences. Had the whole theater laughing!
The script does a good job of pointing a finger at all involved. Just like a person looking for an answer would suspect every one around him. But my problem with such mysteries is that the foreshadowing is more an attempt to confuse than to give a tiny bit away. Deleting elements from a scene and then later showing that element is no way of saying, "caught you!" It's cheating.
Twists are awesome and I love it when they catch me unaware. But some of the twists here either come a tad too late and you can pre-empt them. Or they are almost out of the blue and a little too difficult to digest. Another thing that annoys me is the villain spelling everything out to the hero and thus to the audience. There surely must be a better way to go about this.
Even if you discount for the fact that action films don't necessarily need a whole deal of acting, most of the performances are wooden. Especially Girish Karnad - there was a sizable amount of guffawing at his dialogue delivery. While Akshay Kumar does his usual bit, Ayesha Takia is just about tolerable. What's happening to this woman who was so impressive just two years ago. Javed Jafferi on the other hand brought a smile if not laughter with every movement - this time very intentional. By the way, I shudder to think what Nagesh will do if he ever has a full blown bedroom scene in his script. Just a hug comes out as heavily awkward. Or was Sharmila Tagore strutting around with the censor scissors on set?
Drop the baggage associated with a Nagesh Kukunoor film. He seems to be struggling to strike a balance between his sensibilities and those of mainstream cinema. Don't worry, the stylish titles will help you along - they are really slick but so not what you associate with the Kukunoor name. Maybe he's trying to say, "I can make such films too!" Also, keep the Akshay Kumar 'star' style tag on sans the loudness - thankfully! And then you might give yourself a good chance to enjoy this.
- meeta, a part of the audience
- Violence: Gunshots. And afterall the basic plot revolves around murder.
- Language: No profanity, no sexual references.
- Nudity & Sexual content: None.
- Concept: A 'who-dunnit' with a hero who has supernatural powers. It is a dark movie in the sense that almost all people are suspected of having ulterior motives.
- General Look and Feel: There isn't too much room for song, dance or that kind of tomfoolery.
8x10 Tasveer - Movie Details
- Official Sites: Website Facebook Wikipedia IMDB
- Banner: Percept Picture Company
- Producer: Percept Picture Company
- Director: Nagesh Kukunoor
- Lead Cast: Akshay Kumar, Ayesha Takia
- Supporting Cast: Sharmila Tagore, Anant Mahadevan, Jaaved Jaaferi, Girish Karnad, Benjamin Gilani, Rushad Rana, Utara Pawkar
- Story: Nagesh Kukunoor
- Screenplay: Nagesh Kukunoor
- Dialogues: Nagesh Kukunoor
- Cinematography: Vikas Shivraman
- Editor: Sanjib Datta
- Background Score: Salim Merchant, Sulaiman Merchant
- Action Choreography: John SAmpsons
- Music Director: Salim Merchant, Sulaiman Merchant, Neeraj Shridhar, Bohemia
- Lyrics: Irfan Siddique, Sameer, Bohemia
- Costume Designer: Shabina Khan, Aparna Sud
- Art Direction: Sunil Nigvekar, Abid T.P.
- Facebook Page: Link
- Running time: 120 minutes
- Reviewer: meeta
- Language: Hindi
- Country: India
- Genres: Murder Mystery, Thriller