wogma rating: Watch when on TV/online (?)
The crime-related questions that Kidnap asks are worth pondering over. But the glaring loopholes don't allow you to get absorbed completely.Read more
NOT A REVIEW - Just wondering what I should look forward to more - A thriller, Sanjay Dutt or Imran Khan?
"Does committing a crime make you a criminal?" is a question director, Sanjay Gadhvi, wants to ask his viewers in Kidnap. He says he has attempted to do it without taking sides.
There is no attempt to preach any philosophy of any kind and the film is packaged to serve its primary purpose...and that is to entertain the viewer... and yet to make him think just a little bit as he walks out.
Make me think? This coming from the maker of the inanity called Dhoom? A little more googling and I reach an interview by him on NDTV.
But Gadhvi revealed that he never wanted to make Dhoom in the first place "I never wanted to become a director who makes the Dhoom kind of films ... Yash Raj was like the parents' home. I was the child that left home. And I got the script and title of Kidnap as a going-away gift."
The Yash Raj formula in terms of having the masala essentials of the movie seems to have carried forward though. The "bikini song" craze used for Tashan and Thoda Pyaar Thoda Magic seems to have been carried forward to Kidnap too. I'm sure the script requires it.
Now this is what he says about Imran's role in the script -
Although Imran has a sizeable part in the film, the director says Kidnap is Sanjay Dutt's film.
Now that would come as a disappointment to all those getting excited by the Imran-heavy promos. I'm sure neither the director nor the script have any say in that. And who can be blamed on cashing in on the Jaane tu... mania? Though Sanjay Gadhvi does say that -
From Jaane Tu... to Kidnap is like Kashmir to Kanyakumari for Imran. His character carries the weight of the world on his shoulders like Mr. (Amitabh) Bachchan in Zanjeer.
Wow...now that's some expectation to carry around...
- meeta, a part of the audience
Kidnap does raise interesting questions. What is a small or a big unintentional mistake? Who decides the proportionate punishment? What if the punishment is disproportionate? To what extent should the injustice be set right? What can set it right? Maybe there are straight answers theoretically. Now what if you are the wronged person? What if the stakes are made higher with your child/ person closest to your heart is involved? But, in the tug-of-war between asking these questions and adding commercial masala, the latter pulled harder. And we have a decent story with not-so-decent execution.
Despite the superficial presentation, it's very intriguing to see the movie balancing in the gray zone. There's no hero and no villain. At the most there are two anti-heroes. You can't hate or love either of them, but somehow you aren't indifferent either. You want to know what they've learnt, and how they've changed at the end of the events.
Sanjay Dutt perfectly balances between the street-smart, conniving businessman, Vikrant Raina and the vulnerable father. True Kabir (Imran Khan) is written in good detail, he is supposed to be cynical and all. But in the eagerness to stylize the character Imran Khan's dialogue delivery comes across as very forced. The mid-sentence pauses meant to add attitude, manage to add to the unnaturalness. The narrative, and not Imran's performance, show how a wrong or harsh decision by one person can affect another person's life. So much so that the latter is obsessed with completely bringing down the other person emotionally.
Unfortunately though, other parts of the writing department leave gaps in the narrative. There are a few courtesy smart lines thrown in with a full dose of inanities. What was the point of the clues? It wasn't as if one was leading to another. How the clues are solved is not clarified. And later there are clues that are not even cryptic - they are direct messages. Then why even call it a clue?
Also, there are women in the ring too, and they have reasonable-sized screen presence; but their characters aren't really serving any deeper purpose. Minissha Lamba absolutely behaves like a 18 year old spoilt brat, but she certainly doesn't look like one. How many ever wet-scenes-in-white she has or however unclad she is, she doesn't ooze oomph. Skin show is very in-the-face generally but there is something very ungraceful about it here. Her inelegant dance moves don't help either. And she certainly cannot take on Kareena Kapoor, Amisha Patel or even Aishwarya Rai in this department.
I'm still in shock after seeing Vidya Malavade play Minissha's mom! Though it's a very courageous move, again the deep-necked business suits have been capitalized rather than her acting skills. So, the sum total of cleavage is tasteless and rather functional.
The movie doesn't carry the rugged look that the promos have. It has a very color-saturated feel. That the kidnapped has a full wardrobe - matching shoes included - to her disposal adds to that feel. Did the kidnapper go shopping for her? Or did he take a pit-stop at her home on his way to where he was going to hide her? And who changed her clothes the first time? These things wouldn't usually make it into a review, but they are so blatant that they add significantly to the already unrealistic feel. Oh yeah, there are enough engagements and wedding anniversaries thrown in to have songs with lousy music.
Unrealistic has its advantages though. A couple of actions scenes are really well choreographed and thought out. Bikes and cars are made to do a few imaginative stunts. And human beings aren't left out. The chase scene set in an under-construction building actually has Imran doing Spiderman moves.
If only, they could have resisted over-stylizing it. Or maybe this is just a hangover from the director's last endeavor Dhoom 2 and this is a first step towards having an actual story in an action-thriller.
- meeta, a part of the audience
Thumbs up, by Nikhat Kazmi, Times of India : ...Sanjay Gadhvi's thriller may be low on Dhoom this time, but young Imran Khan more than makes up for the sluggish pace and the mediocre script.... full review
So-So, by Sanskriti Media, AOL INDIA : ...All in all, Kidnap solely survives on the high risks manoeuvres of the kidnapper. The film's commercial value is kept intact. Music score is seemingly mediocre, nothing special there.... full review
So-So, by Sonia Chopra, Sify Movies : ...Director Sanjay Gadhvi must concede that his two super-successes Dhoom and Dhoom:2 bring with it a cauldron of expectations. The main flaw with Kidnap is its failure to convince us of the said situation... full review
Thumbs down, by Baradwaj Rangan, Blogical Conclusion, The New Sunday Express : ...Will Minissha Lamba’s cleavage distract audiences from a script so preposterous, a David Dhawan enterprise would appear, in comparison, a model of clear, calm logic?... full review
Thumbs down, by Abhishek Mande, Buzz18 : ...If there is one thing that Sanjay Gadhvi gets right in Kidnap, it is the casting. By making Vidya Malavade play Minissha Lamba's mother, Gadhvi (inadvertently perhaps) manages to appease the small but growing tribe of men who drool over older women.... full review
Thumbs down, Movie Talkies : ...Kidnap begins promisingly the premise is strong and even the treatment of the opening credits sets you up to expect a great film , but unfortunately you are left disappointed with the treatment of a screenplay which otherwise could have made for a very enjoyable film.... full review
Thumbs down, by Anupama Chopra, NDTV : ...Shibani Bhatija's script, about a young man who seeks revenge on a rich businessman by kidnapping his daughter, probably sounded good on paper. On screen, it is undiluted comedy.... full review
Thumbs down, by Subhash K Jha, Now Running.com : ..."Kidnap" is a thriller gone so wrong, you wonder if criminals in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh would believe the clumsy way Imran Khan handles the whole abduction.... full review
Thumbs down, Planet Bollywood : ...KIDNAP is a film that aspires to be a Hollywood style thriller but with the conventional Bollywood revenge plot thrown into it. Ultimately, it’s a movie that works as neither.... full review
Thumbs down, by Elvis D'Silva, Rediff : ...Bollywood has a long history of promising way more than it delivers so nobody will be really surprised to see so much effort being tossed into promoting a product that clearly suffers from a case of 'too many plumbers attempting to cook'.... full review
Twitter reviews for this movie are not available.
This page has additional observations, other than the ones noted in the main review.
Warning: this section has some details that could distort your experience while watching the movie. I strongly recommend reading this only after you have seen the movie or if you have decided not to see it.
Kabir (Imran Khan) kidnaps Sonia (Minissha Lamba) to settle some scores with her father Raina (Sanjay Dutt).