RACE 2 review


UTV Motion Pictures and Tips Industries Ltd.’s Race 2, the sequel of Race, is a thriller. Ranveer Singh (Saif Ali Khan), boyfriend of Sonia (Bipasha Basu), cons Vikram Thapar (Rajesh Khattar) so badly that he is divested of the five casinos that he owns in Istanbul. Ranveer’s next target is Armaan Malik (John Abraham), and he asks Robert D’costa alias RD (Anil Kapoor) to introduce him to Armaan, promising him a commission from the profits he and Armaan would make in a fail-safe scheme he has in mind.

Ranveer charms Armaan as also his step-sister, Aleena (Deepika Padukone), who is a 50% partner with Armaan in all his profits. Soon, he establishes contact with Armaan Malik’s girlfriend, Omeesha (Jacqueline Fernandes), under the belief that she is the sister of Sonia. He tells Omeesha of his plan to destroy Armaan, like he had finished Vikram Thapar, as they both had been instrumental in killing his girlfriend and her sister, Sonia. On her part, Sonia also pledges her support to Ranveer. It turns out that Armaan and Omeesha had conned Ranveer into believing that she was Sonia’s sister so that they could know what was in his mind.

Unaware of this, Ranveer agrees to steal the shroud of Turin from the museum in Italy and sell it to Armaan at a discounted price. Armaan agrees to pay the hefty price with the intention of laying his hands on the shroud and manipulating matters in such a way that he’d also get his money back. Armaan strikes a deal with Godfather … (Aditya Pancholi), an underworld don, for the money to pay Ranveer.

Is Ranveer successful in stealing the shroud from the high-security museum? Does Armaan pay him the huge sum of money? Does Ranveer give him the coveted shroud of Turin? What is RD’s role in this mission? Whose side is Aleena on? Is Omeesha loyal to Armaan?

Shiraz Ahmed’s story and screenplay are so heavily inspired by Race that they don’t have the shocking quality of the first part. The USP of Race was that everyone was a rogue and fraudster and it came as a shock each time it was revealed how one had manipulated and conned the other/others. That shock element is missing in the sequel if only because it is clear that each character is not what he appears to be. Also, the screenplay is so implausible that one loses interest quite early on. Not just that, the links used to further the drama are also very convenient. Note, for instance, how easy it is for both, Ranveer and Armaan, to eavesdrop on the other. The scene showing Ranveer chasing Sonia’s killer is well- executed but after a point of time, the chase looks forced because when the sharpshooter is escaping in a car, Ranveer is trying to catch him by jumping into a speedboat. All the sharpshooter (who is shown to be a superb athlete) needed to do was to abandon the car and run because by the time Ranveer would’ve alighted the boat and come to the land, the sharpshooter would’ve easily escaped. Again, why Armaan Malik runs to save Ranveer’s life when Ranveer and Aleena are travelling in a car fitted with a bomb is not clear. Of her own admission, the bomb was planted at the behest of Armaan as he wanted Aleena to be murdered. Since Armaan knew that Ranveer wanted to destroy him, shouldn’t he have rejoiced that he (Ranveer) would also be murdered along with Aleena, with no extra effort? The writer has sought to pass off Armaans’s move to save Ranveer by showing that he was keen to make money in partnership with Ranveer and then con him so that the entire profit would be his. But what if Ranveer would murder him before or after that? How could Armaan behave so recklessly as to risk being completely destroyed by Ranveer? What’s more, Ranveer had already destroyed Vikram Thapar whom Armaan knew.

The screenplay is of the kind which makes the drama unbelievable, long and boring. Actually, the excitement typical of a thriller is missing in the film because of the many giveaways and several unbelievable, very convenient and even ridiculous twists and turns. The most ridiculous twist is in the climax when Ranveer emerges in a car fitted with parachutes! RD’s track with his assistant, Cherry (Ameesha Patel), is hardly funny at most of the places in spite of his double-meaning dialogues.

On the plus side, the film is made on a big canvas and has been shot beautifully on the breathtaking foreign locations. Aleena, Omeesha and Cherry look sexy and wear stunningly beautiful clothes. The chase and stunt sequences are also eye-filling.

Kiran Kotrial’s dialogues are very good at places but definitely not consistently so.

Saif Ali Khan is earnest and does justice to the character of Ranveer Singh. But showing him capable of doing and knowing everything looks a bit too much. John Abraham is not as effective as one would’ve liked Armaan Malik to be. He does not give his hundred per cent to the character at places but is good otherwise. His fight in the boxing rink is very mass-appealing. Anil Kapoor is relegated to the role of a catalyst in a story mainly about Ranveer and Armaan. He acts with effortless ease. Deepika Padukone looks gorgeously sexy, and goes through her role with utmost sincerity. Jacqueline Fernandez is also sexy and stylish. Ameesha Patel, in a special appearance, looks pretty and plays the dumb bimbette ably. Aditya Pancholi, looking suave in a guest appearance, leaves his mark. Rajesh Khattar makes his presence felt. Mohammed Burmawala, Ilhan Kazalkiya and Dr. Deepak Namjoshi lend fair support. Bipasha Basu (in a special appearance), Andrew Hudson, Sanjay Roy, Sanjay Gandhi and Ketan Karande are okay.

Abbas-Mustan’s direction lacks the fire as the essential hallmarks of a thriller are, unfortunately, missing. Neither is the film fast-paced nor does it provide edge-of-the-seat excitement. No doubt, the director duo has made the film look very rich and glossy and their heroines, supremely sexy, but that’s just one part of the story. The implausibility of the drama would come as a red mark in their report card. Pritam Chakraborty’s music is a mixed bag. The ‘Party on my mind’ song is already a hit. The ‘Lat lag gayee’ song is also entertaining. However, the other songs are not as good. Lyrics (Mayur Puri and Prashant Ingole) are okay. Song picturisations (Ahmed Khan) are good, especially the ‘Party on my mind’ and ‘Lat lag gayee’ numbers. Salim-Sulaiman’s background score is very effective as it serves to heighten the drama. Ravi Yadav’s cinematography is first-rate as he has captured the beautiful foreign locales exceedingly well; not just that, even otherwise, his camerawork is fabulous. Peter Hein’s action and stunt scenes are very powerful even though many may look unbelievable. Aashish Anant Ranade’s sets are grand. Hussain A. Burmawala’s editing is sharp. Production and other technical values are grand.

On the whole, Race 2 is not as entertaining as it should’ve been. Its biggest minus point is that it does not thrill and shock and it is too lengthy. Given its high cost (approximately Rs. 90 crore plus), the film is poised to be a losing fare.

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6 Responses to RACE 2 review

  1. Zoya says:

    I’m going to watch it tomorrow, the trailer seems interesting.
    I even feel that John Abraham should not have been casted for this role though I mostly really like his perfomances.
    Pritam has done a good job with it’s soundtrack.

  2. Amar says:

    It totally lacks the shocking value of first one and twist and turns are nothing interesting most of the time audiences can easily guess that twist. The screenplay has lots of plot holes they only focused on technical parts not on enthralling elements of screenplay that keep the audiences glue to their seat. Below expectation.

  3. Manish says:

    komal, you are dubbing a film fop on the first day of release.On the first day it will be good if you keep your review just to review and not give ur verdict that the film will be a loosing proposition.

  4. soniarun1000@gmail.com says:

    Nyc review

  5. Pingback: Vidur’s Film Diary – February 2013 | Vidur's Blog

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