Ghayal Once Again: A wannabe blockbuster

Sunny Deol’s high-octane comeback film is patchy yet engaging

Updated - February 06, 2016 09:14 pm IST

Published - February 06, 2016 12:00 am IST

A silly, ludicrous plot, tacky filmmaking and yet a movie that turned out to be great fun at times. Ghayal Once Again is a B/C grade paisa vasool entertainer with Sunny Deol trying to be a mix of Rambo, North ka Rajnikanth and his own vigilante self. Successfully at that.

The film starts off rather weirdly, like a bunch of random scenes strung together just as haphazardly. There’s Ajay (Sunny), a social activist, with a traumatic past, a device which takes us back to flashes of Ghayal and establishing a link with the prequel. The film channels the collective angst and anger of the masses about all that is wrong with this country. So Ajay is the messiah who will redeem us. He is the force behind the Satyakam (a nod to his dad’s best film) movement which has corruption and sundry crimes as its target. Then there’s the rich industrialist Raj Bansal who has his own sea link-facing Antilla-like home, a conscience-keeper mom and every VIP of Mumbai eating out of his hands: from the CM to the police chief. We needn’t tell you where the inspiration comes from.

It’s a world of corporate espionage, with cyber cells and an army of hackers and foreign henchmen in toe, one of whom goes by the delectable name Troy. Things come to a head when Ajay’s ex-cop friend Om Puri gets killed in an accident. A group of four youngsters unintentionally capture his moment of death on camera, and it actually turns out to be a murder.

Then on, it’s a fight to nab the incriminating evidence: the recording on a hard disk. Suffice to say that there is action galore, innumerable hand-to-hand, even head-to-head combats and interminably long but thrilling chases. One chase runs from the crowded roads all the way to a mall. In another, Sunny does all kinds of stunts in the thick of traffic, jumps his car right past a fast train then jumps from one moving train to the other. The impossible is possible here. In the climax he takes on the villains with a chopper and finally with his dhai kilo ka haath .

Ghayal Once Again is very old fashioned, rough hewn and klunky. Everything, right from acting to action, is high strung. But it remains curiously engaging till the end. Some moments, like those between the industrialist and his wayward son, when he tells him that he is running a family business, not a crime syndicate, hold promise. But my most priceless takeaway is an unintentionally comic scene. Ajay’s head is surrounded (literally) by SFX recreated scenes and sequences from Ghayal . The past is torturing him when all of a sudden a weepy Soha Ali Khan, ostensibly a neurologist, tells him sternly, “Memory se khelna band karo” . Enough for the whole theatre to laugh out aloud together at the abruptness of her advice. For this scene alone I can watch Ghayal Once Again once again.

Everything, right from acting to action, is high strung. But it remains curiously engaging till the end

Ghayal Once Again

Director: Sunny Deol

Starring: Sunny Deol, Soha Ali Khan, Om Puri, Tisca Chopra, Manoj Joshi, Narendra Jha

Run time: 126 mins

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