- 1 / 2
DIRECTOR: Remo D’souza
STARRING: Varun Dhawan, Shradha Kapoor and Prabhu Deva
RATING: 2.5 stars
ABCD 2 is Chak De India on the dance floor. The ‘anti-national’ coach is replaced by the guilt-ridden, ‘cheating’ dance group, the girls of the hockey team are replaced by hip hop dancers and the grand international championship in a foreign land.
Alas! Kabir Khan faced serious allegations of being a national traitor. In ABCD 2, the group is ridiculed for copying an international group at a local reality TV show, allegations so serious that I wanted to hand over a lollypop to everyone involved. Plagiarism is a serious issue, agreed. Deal it seriously then. Instead the film shows a man refusing to pay for pizzas because it is delivered by one of the 9 (cheating) group’s dancers, who moonlights as a pizza delivery boy!! Ahem!!
The group dancers, unlike unique girls of Kabir’s raakshaso ki sena, are a replica of each other. Important issues of Chak De like team work, women’s struggle in the sports world, are sadly replaced by a dancer’s injured leg in ABCD 2. It’s this superficiality, this simplicity that never lets the film take off.
There is even a full sattar minute inspiring speech that comes from Suresh (Varun Dhawan) at a moment of crisis. In an attempt to do a Kabir Khan, he ends up being a Raghu giving faltu-ka-tu-Roadie-hain-Roadies-don’t-give-up-gyan to I-will-give-100-%-to-all-tasks- contestants!! The dancers are all pepped up and all is hunky dory in the la la land!!
And then enters Vishnu (Prabhu Deva). All sorrows vanish. The world is a happier place. And you stop complaining. He holds you by your collar, asks you to leave everything aside and watch him as he effortlessly moves to Happy Hour. The man is such a brilliant dancer that suddenly the plummeting stars of this review rose from -10 to 10.
Dharmesh sir, Punit Pathak and their introduction dance sequences are spec-OMG-tacular!!!! It was heartwarming to see the director give importance to dancing. Hence the supporting cast gets equal screen presence as the main lead. Varun and Shraddha at no point take centrestage especially when it comes to dance sequences.
Remo D’souza gets the dancing so right in the movie that I would have given this movie full five stars, if the actors just danced and didn’t utter a word.
But dogs don’t fly and Vinnie just doesn’t shut up. Shraddha Kapoor plays Vinnie whose enthusiasm put me to sleep. But it’s not all that bad. I applauded. At least once. When Vishnu tells her in sheer desperation- “Control Vinnie.” I felt his pain. She makes up for her dancing though. Despite being a non-dancer, she has worked hard and it shows. Atta girl!
Varun Dhawan is as earnest as it gets. The actor somehow lends credibility to poorly written characters like Suresh in ABCD 2. The lines are far from convincing. Varun’s acting is. And he has the biggest strength an actor must have these days --- 8 pack abs. And boy he can dance. Full marks to the casting director.
The film suffers majorly from poor writing and poorer editing. The dance group has three months to prepare for the international championship; alas, they spend three days that felt like three years to convince Prabhu Deva to be their choreographer. The film in the second half is as sluggish. You lose patience. You want them to snap it short and cut to the championship but the filmmaker has other plans. Before they take you to the climax, they have a free hop-on hop-off tour of Las Vegas, a dinner at Vegas’s best Indian restaurant, a Pooja Batra and her infectious smile. There is also the American contemporary dancer Lauren Gottlieb whose dance moves push the rating of this review a couple of notches higher!
In short, if you are a DID/Jhalak Dikhhlaa Jaa/Just Dance fan. If you have broken your fingers, sending a thousand messages to save your favorite contestants on reality shows!! If Dharmesh, Punit, Cockroach, Raghav are familiar names who bring a big smile on your face, then you must watch ABCD 2.
WHAT THE RATINGS MEAN
1 star: Do I even need to explain this?