After having seen Wanted and Dabangg, I had certain expectations from Salman Khan’s latest movie Ready that did not exactly get fulfilled. However, to say that Ready was not thoroughly entertaining would be unfair.
Directed by Anees Bazmee, who has in the past made blockbuster comedies like No Entry, Ready stars Salman Khan and Asin Thottumkal (from Ghajini) along with a long list of the best comedic actors Bollywood can boast of at the moment, led by the amazing Paresh Rawal.
Without giving away too much, Ready is about Prem (Khan) and Sanjana (Asin), whose paths cross each other when the latter, while running away from her uncle, pretends to be someone she is not. Somehow, as it usually happens in the typical Bollywood movie, the boy and the girl fall in love with each other. However, Sanjana, who turns out to be the niece of two warring gangsters, ends up needing Prem to rescue her from them. The movie then revolves around Prem’s attempts to persuade every other character on screen to help him teach the uncles a lesson.
As mentioned earlier, the cast in Ready may not be star-studded, but it sure is brimming with talent.
Sanjana’s uncles are played by Sharat Saxena, who has been playing villainous and comic roles since I was barely out of diapers and Akhilendra Mishra, an excellent actor who has never failed to entertain. Meanwhile, Mahesh Manjrekar, Manoj Pahjwa and Manoj Joshi have been cast as Prem’s father and two uncles, respectively. You may not know them by their names, but their on-screen presence is certainly something to look forward to.
A separate mention must be made for Paresh Rawal, who is not unknown to anyone who knows anything about Bollywood.
However, what did disappoint slightly was the choice of the lead female. Asin, though she certainly is good to look at, especially on the big screen, does a mediocre job. She doesn’t dazzle you, and doesn’t have that wit or charm, or dare I say — that X factor that is expected from a protagonist. No other female character in the movie has much of a role, so Asin didn’t even have any competition and could really have used this movie as her launching pad. Sadly, she does her career a huge disservice by mincing her way through the movie ineffectively.
The film has some very catchy and memorable songs out of which “Dhinka Chika” has become the most danced at song at mehndis in Pakistan.
Ready is full of slapstick humour and violence without bloodshed, which makes it sort of a family movie (apart from the subtle perversion in some jokes). While I wouldn’t place it at the same level as Dabangg, you’re in for a reasonably good time if you watch Ready. Just don’t get your hopes up too high.
Published in The Express Tribune, Sunday Magazine, July 24th, 2011.