REVIEW

Race 3

OR (And No Flying Jatts Were Given)

Author

Kelvin Kantharaj Vincent




WORDICT

Nope.






ELITE METER
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BYTE THE BULLET

How many times would one have to say "no" to get a point across?

27th July, 2018

Kelvin Kantharaj Vincent

PLOT

Family stuff. Twists and turns. Bro-hood. And Salman Khan. That's basically all you need to know.

July 28, 2018

If you've been even vaguely familiar with the first two installments of the Race series, you'll probably wonder if director Remo D'Souza (ABCD 2, 2015)—who's taken over the reins of the franchise from the thriller-duo-in-white Abbas and Mastan—wanted to do a weird K3G-after-dark here. Maybe he did, maybe he didn't; but here we are, watching demigod-superstar-who-always-loses-his-shirts Salman Khan (Tubelight, 2017) mouthing gems like, "There's nothing more important than family, and one's loyalty towards his family is everything." Well, I guess after his repeat collaborations with the late Ravi Chopra (Baghban) and Sooraj Barjatya (Prem Ratan Dhan Paayo), it had to trickle down somewhere else too, so here we are. Not unlike many of Chopra and Barjatya's respective films, Race 3 is also (oddly) all about loving your family, even if all of them are sociopathic criminals in an action-franchise with zero moral compass. Is it slick and stylish? No. Does it come even close to touching the balance of kitsch and style in the first and—to an extent—second? Again, no.

Everyone in the "Race" Cinematic Universe has infinite backstories, to the point you're going to give up right after the what will feel like the umpteenth "big reveal" and want to borrow that Infinity gauntlet to wipe yourself out of existence.
Everyone in the "Race" Cinematic Universe has infinite backstories, to the point you're going to give up right after the what will feel like the umpteenth "big reveal" and want to borrow that Infinity gauntlet to wipe yourself out of existence.

Allow me to explain: in the first two films, Abbas and Mustan were smart enough to use their ensemble with enough equity to last the whole movie—every character served a purpose; even the dumb stereotypes, and despite the unsurprising male-gaze the film took, it wasn't too complicated to see that the men weren't just the only ones leveling the playing field. Then again, Race 3 doesn't have the luxury to focus on anybody but one person: Khan and his noble character, Sikander Singh. Like with most of Khan's recent mainstream acting projects, his latest is nothing but an unabashed ego trip, and D'Souza seems just about alright to let the star and his fleet of cars and weaponry do the talking. This isn't a movie; it's a shrine to its protagonist. And his abs. And the parachute-like contraption he keeps unfurling every half-hour.

Sure, superficially, Race 3 has everything that made the series famous—a bevy of bad-but-beautiful people, beautifully cinematographed locations, and some thrilling action set-pieces, a couple of vehicular chases, with every plot twist in the galaxy thrown in for effect. Then again, without a narrative, none of them have anything more to add to it. For the sake of argument though, let's talk about character "arcs." Everyone in the "Race" Cinematic Universe has infinite backstories, to the point you're going to give up right after the what will feel like the umpteenth "big reveal" and want to borrow that Infinity gauntlet to wipe yourself out of existence.

"Th—this is how, uh. This is how I hold a gun then? Two guns?"

Salman Khan stars in Remo D'Souza's Race 3, a Tips Films and Salman Khan Films release.

Some positives survive the Bhai-Blizzard; Anil Kapoor (Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol; 2011) is terrific in this film, although you'd prefer him as the corrupt cop Robert D'Costa in the previous chapters. And then there's Bobby Deol (Gupt, 1997), a man whose presence is quite heartening to see back after a while—even though he looks occasionally lost, and we wouldn't blame him, really. Jacqueline Fernandez (A Gentleman, 2017) also makes maybe some attempts, but the writing really doesn't elevate her to a character beyond the chick-with-moves persona. These silver linings don't matter, however, mainly when you've got accidental meme-queen Daisy Shah's (Hate Story 3; 2015) business you'd rather stay away from or Saqib Saleem's (Bombay Talkies) fratboy-bro persona that wastes his talent completely.

[Daisy Shah] can't seem to care, and is perfectly happy twirling her hair, hands, and fabric to Your Friendly Neighborhood Generic Mainstream Song.
[Daisy Shah] can't seem to care, and is perfectly happy twirling her hair, hands, and fabric to Your Friendly Neighborhood Generic Mainstream Song.

Shah, in particular, has a questionable screen-presence, and even worse chemistry with Deol, who's flummoxed to just be with her while she can't seem to care, and is perfectly happy twirling her hair, hands, and fabric to Your Friendly Neighborhood Generic Mainstream Song. Then again, all of that doesn't matter, because it's a Salman Khan show all the way, where the makers attempt to cover every inch of the frame with his presence to the best of their abilities(?). Race 3 is the kind of shrine ardent fans will queue up and leave bracelets over instead of flowers.

But the movie's biggest takeaway, ironically, comes from Daisy Shah, whose business might as well remain her own. All we need to do is mind our respective businesses and STAY AT HOME. (This is not a drill, seriously. Do anything BUT that).


VERDICT

Do I even need to elaborate here?

ABOUT
THE AUTHOR

About the Author

Kelvin Kantharaj Vincent

Facebook

Voracious reader. Passionate writer. Certified crazy. Relentless foodie.

About the Author

Kelvin Kantharaj Vincent

Facebook

Voracious reader. Passionate writer. Certified crazy. Relentless foodie.

About the Author

Kelvin Kantharaj Vincent

Facebook

Voracious reader. Passionate writer. Certified crazy. Relentless foodie.