Freaky Ali: Not a great tee off

This Friday, Bollywood spans the class divide: from the uber rich of Baar Baar Dekho to the underprivileged of Freaky Ali. But there’s very little to choose between the two when it comes to compelling viewing.

Freaky Ali is predictable to the core replete with every cliché of a typical sports film that you can possibly think of and, is marked by old fashioned story-telling and over the top, slapstick humour. The added layer is also a done and dusted one, that of a poor man taking to a rich man’s game — golf — and succeeding at it at that.

Director: Sohail Khan
Cast: Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Arbaaz Khan, Amy Jackson, Seema Biswas, Jas Arora
Run time: 120 mins

Nawazuddin Siddiqui plays Ali, an undergarment seller and an extortionist who purely by chance becomes “Golf ka Sachin”. As he grows in the game, his attire — the trousers and T-shirts — progress from the cheap and loud to the chic. Other than the rich golfing rival (Jas Arora), all the people that surround Ali are essentially good at heart. That is, even the bumbling, harmless goons, who seem to be leftovers from the sets of Munnabhai. Add to it a sweater-knitting maa (Seema Biswas) and a friend-cum-sidekick (Arbaaz Khan) and the picture is complete.

It is Siddiqui, the underdog hero, who holds the film together, with his sharp tongue and ready retorts. The simmering anger and a hunger to succeed that are so embedded in his edgy personality work well for his character.

There is some Kader Khan like dialoguebaazi written by Raaj Shaandilyaa – “Gareeb log jeette hain ya seekhte hain, haarte nahin” (The poor people live or learn, but never lose). However, most times it lapses into crude jokes and some cringe-worthy inanities like “Garments aur undergarments mein bahut farak hota hai” (There’s a lot of difference between garments and undergarments). Who doesn’t know that? To top it all, women (aurat) are spoken of as a trophy/achievement in life for the man, in the same vein as izzat, shohrat aur daulat (respect, fame and wealth). Not cool at all.

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Printable version | Apr 14, 2021 2:09:22 AM |

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