First Movie Review: Hero

Will the Sooraj Pancholi-Athiya Shetty starrer recreate the magic of the original? Read what City 1016's Lokesh Dharmani has to say
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First Movie Review: Hero
A still from Hero

DIRECTOR: Nikhil Advani
STARRING: Sooraj Pancholi, Athiya Shetty, Tigmanshu Dhulia, Kader Khan, Aditya Pancholi, Sharad Kelkar
RATING:  1.5 stars

Watching Hero is like refreshing your Facebook timeline, hoping for a like or a comment. Except nothing happens. The movie moves from one bizarre scene to the other making you realise that those Candy Crush invites are NOT the most irritating thing in the world.

But let me start with a confession. I really wanted this film to work for both the newcomers. They look so earnest, nervous and so dreamy eyed while promoting the film. I genuinely wished the film worked for them, so I went with 5 stars for the movie in my head, most of which I kept losing with every minute of the film.

The movie starts with a jigsaw puzzle where the hero’s waxed torso, his bulging biceps, his shampooed hair, his face-washed stubble, his pointless tattoos all come together to reveal a full blown, muscular Sooraj. His entry causes a mini earthquake. The bottles on the table start shaking and falling as he enters. Wow, yeh hero hain ya Jurassic Park ka Tyrannosaurus Rex. Along with the bottles, the first star falls and leaves it to a 4 star.

This is followed by a fight, a club song and a scene where he saves Radha-on-the-dance-floor-Shetty from the zor-zabardasti of her ex-boyfriend. And soon we are transported to the good old 1980s and its gheesa-pita filmy formulae. I was so waiting for a ‘Kanoon ko apne haath mein mat lo’ or ‘Main tumhare bachche ki maa banne wali hoon.’ Alas, it never happened. Another star stripped!!      

Hero educates us how to celebrate Valentine’s Day: hold hands, look into each other’s eyes and kiss your beloved’s lips. Alas, it’s only ‘big talk no action’. Even the scars on hero’s face after a gruesome fight look like lipstick marks instead of blood, alas, without any kissing. Sometimes it’s the lead pair that deprives us of a hearty kiss, sometimes it’s their fathers. I kid you not, in an intense scene Tigmanshu Dhulia comes so close to Aditya Pancholi that you cringe they might kiss. Thankfully, it all ends up in dialoguebaazi and sweet nothings being whispered into Aditya’s ears.

Even the characterisation doesn’t work. The hero is too metrosexual to be a goon and the heroine too ditsy to be IG’s daughter. She thinks she is protected by police except the man who kidnaps her is too six-packed to be a Mumbai cop. She thinks eating non-vegetarian food is gandi baat and that her love life is in trouble because she broke her god promise by downing a few tangdi kebabs. Err wait, how old are you really? Five? No, two!! Just like the star rating of the review right now.

But it’s a Hindi film and I am ready to suspend all logic. So I buy that the lead pair falls in love because the hero is shirtless and the heroine is hormonal. I smile when the hero wants to start a shareefo wali zindagi. He can be a gym trainer. So he starts his own gym!! I don’t even complain when the hero dodges a bullet full matrix Rajinikanth style. But meet heroine’s father. He is an IG, the no-nonsense police officer. He is told Radha beti has forgotten Sooraj and is dating MBA type Ranvijay. He happily agrees without doing any check on Ranvijay, who is a criminal too. You should know better. You are a POLICE OFFICER. I wanted to strip off all his glorious stars, but I settled for another half star of this review.  

It really breaks my heart that the newcomers couldn’t really pack a punch in their first movie. Sooraj-I-took-my-acting-classes-in-Gold-Gym looks like Gautam Gulati’s body double. Look close, he even smiles like him. The character he plays is like a grown up Darsheel Safari. He doesn’t sing ma, he tattoos it. But full points to him on building a great body. He looks good, is earnest and I hope he gets better with time.

Athiya-mere-pappa-anna-hain-Shetty is beautiful and a shade more confident than Sooraj. Her dialogue delivery though reminded me of Shaina NC on Times Now: lots of words and no feelings. But it’s not her fault. The character was badly written!!

Vivan-Preeti-Sabarwal’s-dumped-boyfriend-in-Chak-De-India-Bhatenda as Ranvijay is a revelation. Despite getting a character that comes from nowhere in the second half, the man manages to play it well. He plays Ranvijay with a certain sense of ease, wickedness and confidence that comes with time and experience.  

Bad writing, poor direction and average performances make Hero forgettable. Hope Nikhil Advani redeems himself next weekend with Katti Batti!!  


5 stars: Loved it. (This could make to top ten movies you must watch before you die!) 
4 stars: Liked it. Recommend it. (This will help you sound intellectual and give you stuff to add at water cooler conversations.)
3 stars: Didn’t hurt. Watch it once. 
2 stars: It put me to sleep. Watch it if you are an insomniac or a newly wedded couple. Winks!
1 star: Do I even need to explain this?