Special Chabbis - Review

wogma rating: Watch when on TV (?)
quick review:

Special Chabbis is an unfair joke on the audience. If it were not for some witty dialogue delivered with great timing, Special Chabbis would've been a very frustrating experience.

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Wogma Review

When Special Chabbis ends, you go through the entire film in your mind (you are helped by some repeated scenes in the end) and you realize that some of the scenes were in the film, only to put you off track from cracking the mystery. Why else would people who know each other talk like strangers when they are by themselves in the story?

Till then, you are holding on through Akshay Kumar, Anupam Kher and some of the others moving in slo-mo just because this is made by the guy who made A Wednesday - this HAS to lead to something good. In fact, the entire film feels like it is moving in slow motion, even when the camera is doing its job at regular speed. And yet you are giving it leeway. Good thing that smart one-liners delivered with some really good timing keep you interested in the film.

That doesn't mean that the performances are top-notch. Except for Anupam Kher and Manoj Bajpayee, the rest are just plain. I cannot deny that it's a relief to see Akshay Kumar in a role where he isn't at his "comic" antics.

Kajal Aggarwal is here only so that the fairer gender have some representation. Divya Dutt is given just the one line to repeat whenever it is predictably appropriate and the third woman is around just so she can be told by her husband to wear a dupatta! The way the camera moves along the women's curves makes this film as respectful of women as any other film with an item number for X-factor.

These are the things you don't expect after watching A Wednesday. Yes, with that one Neeraj Pandey had set up competition for himself with himself.

I enjoyed the set-up. The film gives its audience the time to figure things out for themselves. Especially the 'who's who and doing what' bit isn't aided by people talking to each other as if they are meeting for the first time, or a voice-over trying to help us out.

However, that becomes a bit of a drab later, as you feel you are continuously in an exposition mode. In fact, given the end, the entire film feels just like an introduction to a sequel, if not a series of films.

It is sad then, to see out-of-place stylization and the lackluster conclusion. Also, when lead players in the film are not going to be nice people, you need a good amount of background about them, to be able to root for them. None of the lead characters, except Mr. Sharma (Anupam Kher) to a certain extent, get you invested in them. Nothing to keep you hooked through out.

Sure, there is the sentiment of hurting the corrupt of our nation, of giving them what they deserve. But, it seemed half-baked and felt like it was a comment in the passing. Another side note is that no one in our country's administration and law enforcement believes in something as basic as checking credentials. Are we such a trusting nation?

Yet, if you can forgive the writer in Neeraj Pandey for going out of his way to fool you into believing something, there are a couple of twists that do make you smile because of the way the characters seem to be outsmarting each other. But, along with that you have a lame love story, a few quirks that exist just for the sake of being quirky, and con-jobbers who are written more to con you than each other.

- meeta, a part of the audience

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: A fist fight.
  • Language: None expressly expressed.
  • Nudity & Sexual content: A few scenes with some cleavage.
  • Concept: Con artists doing their job.
  • General Look and Feel: Gives you a feeling of being in the 80s.

Detailed Ratings (out of 5):

  • Direction: 1.5
  • Story: 2.5
  • Lead Actors: 3
  • Character Artists: 2
  • Dialogues: 3.5
  • Screenplay: 1
  • Music Director: 2
  • Lyrics: 2

Special Chabbis - Movie Details

Special Chabbis - Trailer

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Comments (29)

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Anuj:

If this one's even 1/10th as gripping and thrilling as "A Wednesday",we definitely have one of the best films of 2013 on our hands....and Akshay's best by leaps and bounds too :P

Anuj:

If this one's even 1/10th as gripping and thrilling as "A Wednesday",we have the best film of 2013 on our hands and definitely Akshay Kumar's best by a long distance!

meetu:

@Anuj I hope it is more than 1/10th *fingers crossed*

Anuj:

@meetu : Why are all my comments getting removed? I can't view any of them! :/

meetu:

@Anuj I am extremely sorry. We are facing some huge technical problems with comments. We are in the process of fixing it. I am very sorry.

Anuj:

@Meetu : Btw,S-26 is a lot more than 1/10th of A Wednesday ;) Neeraj Pandey's back and how....And finally at long last can we really be proud of an Akshay Kumar film(omg was not his at all)

meetu:

@Anuj Really? I didn't quite enjoy Special Chabbis, but for a few sequences. The end spoilt it for me completely.

Anuj:

Your review gives me a feeling that u went in with massive expectations(for obvious reasons).Forget about the fact that this one's from a guy who made A Wednesday and just watch it again with zero expectations and a blank mind.I'm sure you'd enjoy it a lot more.
PS:Something similar happened with me when i watched MKBKM!

Anuj:

The only unnecessary aspect was the Akshay-Kajal track.But again,much unlike A Wednesday,this one's an out & out commercial venture starring a guy whose carved a niche for himself through ott action/comedy films.Certain commercial aspects were always expected.

meetu:

@Anuj Naah...beyond the expectations, the whole twist in the end was a major put off. The entire introduction, which I really liked, was only to make sure the audience didn't even consider the climax as a possible turn of events. chhhah!

Anuj:

I wonder how much u would have rated it had it been directed by Rohit Shetty or the Khan siblings :P

meetu:

@Anuj oh, I am almost sure that the rating would have been more or less the same. The caveats are only because I am human. I try my best to keep my biases for individuals away from my reviews and judge the movie for what it is. For example, for every recent Amitabh film that I like, I literally close my eyes and try my best to confirm if I have liked the film more because of him. Similarly, for every Salman film I do the same exercise to see if I hated it more because of him. Though, I think that is a disservice to the film, because his films are for him, you know what I mean?

Guddu:

OOuch ! .. And i expected it to be another A Wednesday , this one raised every one's expectations after the trailers were out with reference to it's twisted and mysterious plot , I will not be surprised if it fails to make impression particularly to the Critic's . As for me i ll go to a cheap theatre as i am warned with this review of urs Meetu .

Anuj:

It means that u hate Salman Khan and cannot stand the sight of him :D Btw,which "recent" Amitabh film did u actually like? :O Its been 3.5 years since Paa released(a little overrated imo)

Anuj:

Most of the critics have given it a thumbs up..Not for the first time ur an exception Meeta :P

http://www.bollymoviereviewz.com/2013/02/special-26-chabbis-hindi-movie-review-taran-adarsh-rajeev-masand-anupama.html

I'm sure this one's gonna succeed at the bo!

Pradeep Menon:

I agree more with this review than with the others. I must say that despite the engaging pace and eventual cult status of 'A Wednesday', Neeraj Pandey has done something similar in that film as well - intentionally misusing the medium to fool the audience before giving a final twist. With this film, he has gone the whole hog on that. Special 26 is entertaining, no doubt, and far better than most recent 'entertainers' at that. But there are such huge flaws in the screenplay that the near-universal glowing words of praise showered on it by most critics confounds me.

B.H.Harsh:

Meetu: The end spoilt it for you? Now this is a first.

meetu:

@Anuj hopefully, all your comments are restored now.

Yes, unfortunately, it's been a long while since I have liked an Amitabh Bachchan film. I have almost always liked his performance though. :)

@Guddu It has been received well, generally. I just don't like thrillers who create thrill by making something true, that was expressly stated as untrue earlier in the film. :(

@Pradeep I know! The overwhelming response has been underwhelming

@Harsh Are you being sarcastic? "This is a first" refers to a film's climax spoiling it for me?

Vikramjeet Singh Mann:

Meetu you comment
"Special Chabbis is an unfair joke on the audience. If it were not for some witty dialogue delivered with great timing, Special Chabbis would've been a very frustrating experience."

Now I have to stop reading wogma reviews,
I can understand that lame love story and point that crime can pay shown in film were a let down , otherwise its a superb film.

I was forced to write this I saw u writing amazing about No Smoking and calling this movie an unfair joke.
People who say great about No Smoking are majority who in their own illusions think that they have the best intellect to understand such movies n such things do happen in great cinema and on other hand , for this movie you are talking how close or far from reality this movie is.
I think you do believe what shown in No Smoking do happen in actuality.

Dont take things personally Meetu, I am just commenting as reader of Wogma.

I also felt u biased unfairly towards houseful 2 and I mention that time also.
You may not be liking Akshay , but your reader might

PS - I am not Akshay fan , just a coincidence regarding Houseful 2.

B.H.Harsh:

Meetu: I meant to say you are the first (and only) person I know who didn't like the climax, so much so that it actually 'spoilt' the overall experience for you.
No sarcasm there at all :) infact, Would be glad if you throw some light on that.. how exactly did the climax make it worse?

meetu:

@Vikramjeet and @Harsh I think the same answer will answer both your questions. Now, this is going to be a task without giving the movie away, still I shall try. Sorry, if the comments sound too cryptic.

Others, who might be reading this, please be warned, how much ever careful I try to be, there is a high chance you will be able to figure it out. So please don't read what follows unless you've seen the film or don't intend to.

Here goes -
Given the 'twist' in the climax, certain scenes in the beginning don't make sense. The Safdarjung meeting or even the first time the 'asli power' dialogue is used (and was mocked at later) wouldn't have happened, if the twist were to be believed.

In fact, the these scenes existed only to throw the audience off, far away from the twist. I, for instance, had thought about and ruled out the climax because of scenes like this. Note, here that I am not talking about the 'asli kaam toh' dialogue. :)

Secondly, chalo, let's assume, the makers were okay with fooling the audience so and I am being too picky, why would two people talk like strangers when they are alone, when they know each other? Authenticity in production design (for this one, the 80s feel) - telephones, currency notes, posters in background, rustic feel etc is great. But what good is it (for me), if characters don't behave with authenticity?

@Vikramjeet 'No Smoking' - That one stumped me and I was surprised with myself. I was inexplicably in awe. I am pretty close to sure that even if Anurag Kashyap were to explain the film scene by scene, I'd take repeated viewings to understand the film. And that is the beauty of that one specifically, and in general all films that have that effect - they make me like something I don't understand, and I love that they can do that.

Also, of course, some of wogma readers might like Akshay Kumar, but I cannot write how a movie makes them feel. I can only write my experience of watching a film. The day I claim to speak as per someone else's tastes, I'll be fake. Which is why, my attempt has always been to explain why I liked what I liked and why I didn't like what I didn't like, so readers as per their tastes can decide whether or not what worked/didn't work for me works/doesn't work for them. I've tried to explain this concept hear - http://wogma.com/article/why-read-a-review/

Anuj:

"The day I claim to speak as per of someone else's tastes, I'll be fake. Which is why, my attempt has always been to explain why I liked what I liked and why I didn't like what I didn't like, so readers as per their tastes can decide whether or not what worked/didn't work for me works/doesn't work for them."

Still not good enough for me to forgive you for your Jodhaa Akbar review :P

Bollywood Bindass:

Nice Review.I Watch This Movie.Akshay Work Very Good.Kajal Play Also So Good Here

Suman:

Direction: 1.5
Story: 2
Lead Actors: 2
Character Artists: 2

Dialogues: 2
Screenplay: 1
Music Director: 0.5
Lyrics: 0.5

meetu:

@Anuj :) alright.

@Suman Oh finally, who didn't like the film more than me! It'd be great if you could elaborate.

Suman:

Sad script, first half has couple of irritating super boring songs,before beginning of second half u will know the ending.
repetition of some scenes which were totally unnecessary.
I was expecting some unusual and interesting presentation of this interesting subject but got disappointed.
Flaws Flaws Flaws..if i started writing about flaws..it will take ages...:P
Waste of a good cast...Kajal is really beautiful..i was just watching her...though his role was not more than 15 mins and soooo unnecessary :(

meetu:

@Suman :) Oh well...

Lalit:

Bakwaas movie. Unnecessery introduction of kajal, 1st rubbry was justified, but 2nd rubbry was nt necessery, anupam kher's daughter's marriage was undesirable 15 minut, the thiefs were taken money and how gone train, bus, flight were just nonsence bakwaas.

Parikshit Lale:

brilliant recreation of era, some really good acting, and a decent plot.. just bear kajal and a song

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