This year was a virtual feast of bad movies. Here are some truly special ones.
5: Sarkar 3 by Ram Gopal Varma
At one point in this film, the grand old patriarch Sarkar is grimly discussing with his ailing wife the prospect of killing his grandson. She begs him not to. She says, log kya kahenge, kaisi family hai. This is after the Nagre family has already spent two films killing each other. Sarkar 3 was filled with these unintentionally comical moments, bizarre camera angles and close-ups of curious artefacts like a bulldog figurine and a laughing Buddha. Even the mighty Amitabh Bachchan couldn’t make sense of this one.
4: Munna Michael by Sabbir Khan
This film was essentially paycheck time for Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Pankaj Tripathi – both fabulous actors who probably figured it is time to make some money. So they play gangster brothers from Haryana. If this film was about them, I would have been happy but sadly it’s about Munna, played by Tiger Shroff, a Michael Jackson fan to must teach the gangsters to dance. Tiger is poetry in motion when it comes to dance and action but even great dancers need a script!
3: Machine by Abbas-Mustan
Machine was a special sort of incoherent. The film was designed as the launch pad for Mustafa Burmawala, who plays the rich, race-car driving hero, Ransh. But his acting skills are so severely limited and the narrative is so nonsensical, that Machine became an instant so bad-that-it’s-good-classic. This is a film to be watched with friends and drinks.
2: Raabta by Dinesh Vijan
This film goes from flat-out silly to unintentionally funny to tear-your-hair-out tedious. There’s a present-day love story in Europe. There’s also an 800-year-old love story in some tribal Game-Of-Thrones inspired land with folks called Muraki. And half way through Rajkummar Rao turns up as an old man with a miniature fox sitting on his head. Even Martin Scorsese couldn’t infuse coherence or sparkle into this tripe.
1: Haseena Parkar by Apoorva Lakhia
Haseena Parkar was a fascinating exercise in foolishness. To begin with Shraddha Kapoor was imitating Marlon Brando from The Godfather – never a wise idea for any actor. Props to her for bravely choosing a different role but this was an impossible battle. Her character was as inconsistent as the bronzer on her face. My favourite scene – on her wedding night, Haseena is trembling like a leaf. She keeps shifting positions so her husband is literally chasing her across the room. And in the next scene, she is throttling a woman and growling: do you know who I am? And as Haseena got more powerful, she started to speak more slowly. As I said in my review – file this under mafia comedies.