Director: Sabbir Khan
Cast: Tiger Shroff, Niddhi Agerwal, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Pankaj Tripathi
In Munna Michael, Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Pankaj Tripathi play gangster brothers from Haryana. Nawaz is Mahinder, a don who describes himself as a forward thinking cool dude. He desperately wants to learn dancing because is he obsessed with a dancer. Pankaj plays his younger, dumber brother. He gets hit a lot and mostly looks confused. Nawaz and Pankaj are two of the best actors working in Hindi cinema right now and I would happily watch a film in which they get to dress up and be badass. Sadly, Munna Michael is not that film.
Instead, we are forced to focus on Munna, played by Tiger Shroff. Munna is an orphan who has been raised by a background dancer – Michael played by Ronit Roy. Michael’s dreams of being a great dancer are dashed when he is brutally told that directors want younger dancers. The exact line is – har cheez ki expiry date hoti hai. Insaan ho ya doodh ka dabba. Teri bhi aa gayi. When I heard that line, I knew I was in trouble.
Munna loves music even as an infant. He grows up to be an avid fan of Michael Jackson. Munna makes money by getting drunk men in nightclubs to place bets on who is the better dancer – him or them. In an early sequence, he wins 1.5 lakh in one night. Which made me reconsider my career choices. These club shenanigans lead him to Mahinder who asks him to teach him how to dance. Mahinder wants to impress Deepika, played by the spectacularly vapid newcomer Nidhhi Agerwal. Deepika wants to win a dance competition. She falls in love with Munna. Now the couple has to dance and dodge bullets.
This scenario is exactly as harebrained as it sounds. The highlight is the climactic sequence in which Deepika and Munna do an elaborately choreographed dance which requires her to step on his thigh which has a bullet in it. Earlier when Michael suggests to Munna that they go to a hospital, he refuses saying – dancer ki body hai, solid hai.
We of course have no doubt ki body solid hai. In his introduction scene, we are shown Tiger’s abs before his face. His uniform is unbuttoned shirts and a lot of bronzer. Tiger’s dancing skills are impeccable. As is his flair for action – he beats men with a poetic flourish. But director Sabbir Khan and writer Vimmi Datta pin his talents on a brain dead narrative. Despite ample support from Nawaz, Tiger’s granite biceps can’t lift the load.
What kept me going was the humour – unintentional of course! Watch out for Ronit Roy – Michael is Christian so he has long hair. He drinks a lot and mumbles, god is great, god is great. There’s also Farah Khan doing a cameo as one of the judges in the dance competition. Her bemused expression reflects our feelings. She knew, as she sat there, that this is the stuff of pure comedy.