One of the most anticipated films of the year, Don 2 has finally hit cinemas across the globe and is well on its way to blockbuster status. The high octane action thriller stars Shahrukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Om Puri, Kunal Kapoor, Lara Dutta and Boman Irani. The film picks up right after the ending of the first film in Malaysia and moves to Europe where Don, now the indisputable king of the Asian underworld, aims to take over the European drug cartel.
Don 2 was made to be watched on the big screen and watching it in 3D just enhances the experience. Priyanka Chopra pulls of her role with aplomb and seems to be the perfect choice for an action heroine, unlike Aishwariya Rai in The Last Legion. As you watch her effortlessly beat up some thugs in the movie, you come to the realisation that she may be the first proper female action hero in Bollywood. I wouldn’t be surprised if her next venture is as the next Lara Croft or the fourth Charlie’s Angel.
The film is not without its faults — Shahrukh Khan’s critics might find his acting similar to what he did in Josh but he actually manages to infuse a raw viciousness into to the character that was sorely missing in the previous movie. While his action choreography wasn’t as good as Chopra’s, his phenomenal one-liners really remind the viewer that the Don is not someone you want to mess with.
While the film is held back by its confusing plot and its unsatisfying ending, Lara Dutta’s classy dance number alone makes it a must watch. The beautifully edited chase sequences, outstanding cinematography and fight scenes more than make up for the shortcomings of the movie.
While some might attribute the popularity of the movie to the SRK factor and the Don brand name, the reality is that Don 2 is a visual masterpiece and sets a very high benchmark for future Indian action films. It proves that Bollywood has what it takes to go beyond half hearted action flicks like Dhoom and Prince to name a few. I am sure that after the success of the movie, the character of Don will be elevated to cult status in Indian pop culture, a benchmark that superhero films like Krish failed to achieve.
Published in The Express Tribune, Sunday Magazine, January 8th, 2012.