A.R. Murugadoss and Prabhu Dheva revived the trend of masala movies with GHAJINI [remake of the Tamil hit GHAJINI; 2005] and WANTED [remake of the Telugu hit POKIRI; 2006], respectively. The victory of these two films triggered off a plethora of masala entertainers, reminiscent of Bollywood of 1970s and 1980s. Almost every actor in Mumbai decided to hitch the bandwagon. The dream merchants and storytellers too felt that they had finally found the formula for a hit. All of a sudden, the Hindi film audience got a taste of logic-less laughs, unrestrained masala, groovy tunes and popular Southern-styled stunts. In short, old-fashioned entertainers were back in vogue.
Post the humungous success of ROWDY RATHORE [remake of the Telugu hit VIKRAMARKUDU; 2006], Akshay Kumar waltzes back to no-holds-barred formula, unleashing yet another runaway entertainer — BOSS, the remake of the Malayalam hit POKKIRI RAJA .
BOSS is a clear departure from previous Akshay starrers [OMG – OH MY GOD!, SPECIAL 26, ONCE UPON A TIME IN MUMBAI DOBAARA!], yet it has everything that spectators look for in masala fares — a daring hero with loads of heroism, the emotional chord between two brothers and their father, a corrupt cop, the fight between good and evil, a tadka of comedy, hummable soundtrack, clap-trap dialoguebaazi, lots of gravity-defying stunts… in fact, BOSS is a fast-moving roller-coaster ride that gives you no time to think. The film transports you to the cinema of yore, when the sole motive of a movie was to please, appease, amuse and entertain the spectators and reap a harvest at the BO. This one does that too: It offers entertainment by the bucketful and celebrates the formula with panache.
Final word? BOSS is *not* for those who find it fashionable to run down masala films. This one’s for those who feast on unadulterated, pure desi entertainers with glee.
The plot of BOSS is equally simplistic: Satyakant [Mithun Chakraborty] unknowingly kills a teenager and his eldest son, Boss [Akshay Kumar], takes the blame on himself. He’s sentenced to jail. When he serves his term and is released, Boss moves to another city. Meanwhile, Satyakant’s younger son, Shiv [Shiv Pandit], bashes up the Home Minister’s son Vishal [Aakash Dabhade], who’s harassing Ankita [Aditi Rao Hydari], the sister of a top cop [Ronit Roy]. All hell breaks loose at this point…
Director Anthony D’Souza tweaks the plot of POKKIRI RAJA to meet the needs of the time and make it more identifiable to the Northern audience. However, what remains intact is the intent of providing unabashed entertainment. Sure, the plotline is no great shakes — perhaps foreseeable too — but the screenplay is watertight, with no scope for bland and unexciting moments to seep in. Besides, Anthony maintains stability in both the halves, with ingredients that constitute a well-made masala fare peppered generously from commencement to conclusion. Besides, the film bears a slick look all through, with a couple of sequences leaving an indelible impact.
I’d like to make a note a few sequences here; Anthony has definitely evolved with BOSS, for sure. The emotional chord between Akshay and Mithun, the tense moments between Akshay and Ronit Roy and and the light ones involving Akshay and Aakash Dabhade are worthy of note. Ditto for the action between Akshay and Ronit in the finale. It’s simply wow!
Blemishes? Minor hiccups actually. The Shakti Kapoor track could’ve been avoided. The pacing in a few sequences could’ve been tighter.
BOSS is embellished with a harmonious soundtrack, balancing between zestful and soft tunes. The reprising of ‘Har Kisiko Nahin Milta’ from Feroz Khan’s JANBAAZ is a clever move. ‘Hum Na Tode’ is another catchy composition and the presence of Prabhu Dheva is a bonus, while ‘Party All Night’ is already a rage. Action/stunts [ANL Arasu] have atypical visuals of the hero proving to be a one-man army for whom bashing a dozen goons is a cakewalk. However, three sequences stand out. One — Akshay’s intro, two — when Mithun visits a dargah with his sons and the fight that ensues and three — the penultimate fight. Dialogue [Sajid-Farhad] are punch-packed. The witty and sober lines are written with equivalent flamboyance. Cinematography [Laxman R. Utekar] is eye-catching, with several wonderful visuals.
Much of the film’s charm and appeal lies in watching Akshay Kumar playing to the gallery. Sure, Akshay is synonymous with entertainers, but his approach to the character in BOSS is way different from what he enacted in his earlier masalathons. Clearly, he’s the mainstay of the enterprise. Also, he looks much more fresh than his previous fares. Mithun Chakraborty is remarkable, enacting the part with utmost sincerity. Danny Denzongpa is wonderful, as always. Ronit Roy is the worthy nemesis to Akshay, who does the menacing act with flourish. He’s absolutely loathsome.
Shiv Pandit has undeniable screen presence and he makes sure he stands out in a film that belongs to Akshay predominantly. Aditi Rao Hydari is pure eye candy. Johny Lever provides some funny moments. Parikshit Sahni is alright. Govind Namdev is apt, while Aakash Dabhade [as his son] is super. Sanjay Mishra is decent. Sudesh Berry, Mukesh Tiwari and Shakti Kapoor appear in cameos.
On the whole, BOSS is a full-on masala entertainer that’s very clear of its intent. It is designed to magnetize lovers of desi commercial cinema and woo the BO. If you savor and relish old-school masaledaar entertainers, BOSS is sure to win you over. Watch this one — it’s a paisa vasool entertainer!