Bholaa: Ajay Devgn Takes Out Bad Guys, Leopard and Logic

Deepanjana Pal

The Setup

Towards the end of Bholaa, a key character gets up, goes into a room and shoots himself in the head. The suicide doesn’t make sense from a storytelling point of view, but it feels like an entirely reasonable response to what Ajay Devgn and his crew have done to Lokesh Kanagaraj’s Kaithi

The Amp Up

The Tamil action thriller was a taut, smartly-made film that allowed for great action scenes to be framed by a simple but effective plot. Its Hindi avatar amps up the testosterone, adds unnecessary frills and loses all semblance of logic.

A Desi He-Man

Bholaa himself appears to be a desi He-Man. Instead of the Sword of Grayskull, he has a trident. When he steps off the truck, the ground shakes and dry leaves shudder. He breaks bones with the same ease with which he demolishes a mountain of tandoori chicken legs.

The Action

As the film progresses, the action scenes in Bholaa start veering towards being farcical. At one point, Bholaa is faced with a line-up of shirtless dudes in shorts who look like they’ve come to the scene after putting up the Insta reel that they hope will make them fitness influencers.

A Tiresome Pileup of Action Scenes

As it stands, Bholaa is a tiresome pileup of action scenes and details that feel derivative. The film leaves the bad guys with broken bones and audiences, with questions — not the least of which is, Bholaa’s own identity.

A Plot that doesn’t get Overpowered by the Spectacle?

For industry insiders and practitioners of cinema, the differences between Bholaa and Kaithi are worth examining because the Tamil film is a good example of a plot that doesn’t get overpowered by the spectacle. In Bholaa, the plot is an excuse for elaborately-staged action scenes that hope to feel cathartic to the viewer.

Thank you for reading

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