There’s an unwritten rule in film reviewing: thou shall not be prejudiced against a movie before watching it. Ironically, that rule must be sidestepped if one attempts to review an Akshay Kumar film with fairness. Think about it. Unless you’re able to accept and move on from the fact that a majority of his movies are brainless, tasteless affairs, how do you survive a film like Boss while still trying to be fair to it?

The problem here is that despite making those concessions – the movie requires that you apply neither common sense nor taste – Boss is still a pretty forgettable film.

Akshay Kumar bashes, slams, clobbers and punches his way through the 2 hours 24 minutes running time of this movie, even as the sound of every crunched bone and displaced jaw echoes through your ears. Akshay’s playing Boss, a good-humored goonda who accepts a contract to bump off Shiv (Shaitaan’s Shiv Pandit), an innocent fellow in love with a sadistic police officer’s sister. The cop (Ronit Roy) has promised to marry his sister (Aditi Rao Hydari, memorable only for a ‘bikini moment’) to the idiot son of a corrupt minister he’s in cahoots with. But Boss learns that Shiv is in fact the brother he was estranged from when their father (Mithun Chakraborty) disowned him as a child.

Directed by Anthony D’Souza, who helmed that awful underwater adventure Blue, this remake of the Malayalam hit Pokkiri Raja is packed with lengthy flashbacks, cringe-inducing melodrama, and the kind of pedestrian dialogues that evoke memories of bad 80s potboilers. The action scenes are surprisingly gruesome, their effect amplified by the sound design. The film’s gags, meanwhile, are uniformly juvenile. Roughly half a dozen times, bad guys are kicked or whacked in the crotch; another time Akshay asks a fellow to be careful where he’s sitting or a nail might hurt his “ande”. He plants a bomb in a bad guy’s backside naming it “Bum chiki bum” even as Shakti Kapoor shows up with a pair of pliers to disengage it from the man’s anatomy. And in one scene, talking about a girl he rescued, Akshay says he regards her as his sister, after whom he named his truck “Behen ki lorry”. Get it?

Only occasionally you catch glimpses of Akshay’s famed comic timing, especially in a scene in which he mock fights with Shiv to throw off the bad guys. Talented actors like Mithun Chakraborty, and even Danny Denzongpa, playing Akshay’s adoptive father Big Boss, are completely wasted, while Ronit Roy as the permanently scowling cop appears to be the only actor taking this drivel seriously.

I’m going with one-and-a-half out of five. Neither original, nor entertaining, this Boss deserves to be fired!

 

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