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STRIKER - Movie Review : Only the game is new here and rest is all the same. (Review By Bobby Sing)
05 Feb, 2010 | Movie Reviews / 2010 Releases

Multiplex culture has opened new avenues for many talented film makers, who have great ideas in their minds, waiting to be executed on the screen within a smartly planned budget. It’s a welcome trend for sure, but sadly very seldom we get to see a thoroughly enjoyable flick in this particular genre, wherein a director successfully is able to transform an interesting idea on paper into an equally interesting movie on the celluloid.

Chandan Arora’s ‘Striker’ also falls in the same category in which the subject of an exceptional carom player seems to be far more exciting than the actual final product in the theaters. The story of a young unemployed boy, who is great at playing carom and wants to go to Dubai to earn a lot more, had surely got some box office potential in it. But the end product completely fails to win over the viewers mainly due to its repetitive scenes and too lengthy narration. To be straight, the game is new and the treatment is right but a lousy script with many unwanted angles and subplots simply turns a potential good movie into a below average one.
Unexpectedly, ‘Striker’ keeps hanging between different story plots, taking the viewers attention away from its novel concept of a carom gambling racket. Deliberate insertion of 1992 communal riots of Mumbai, further ruin the movie, which otherwise could have been much better if the director had kept his focus on the game and its gamble alone. The movie starts off well with the story moving around characters living in the slums and its small illegal clubs. But soon with the introduction of more undeveloped characters on the screen, it loses its way completely. For instance the love angle in the first half finishes off just like that and never returns back, the 1992 riots come into the narration from no-where without any specific purpose to fulfill and the lady owner of a small hotel is added in the script only to provide a little eroticism on the screen. Moreover the time span of the movie which keeps shifting between flashbacks of few years, also becomes confusing for a while.
The casting too, forcibly involves few well known faces of Bollywood, who are there only to add some more commercial value to the project. Like, Anupam Kher has nothing great to do in the movie as a Police Officer and his part could have easily given to a lesser known actor. Vidya Maldave does not look like a poor young girl living in the slums. Seema Biswas is completely wasted in a tiny role. Anoop Soni as the elder brother performs a similar act close to his ongoing T.V serials and Aditya Pancholi plays the bad man exactly like he did a few years back.
However there still exists a shining silver line in the black clouds which is represented by the brilliant performances by both Sidhharth as Surya and Ankur Vikal as Zaid. Siddharth delivers a fine natural act, but also gets caught doing it over the top in a few scenes. As Surya he surely gives a competent performance on the lines of his “Rang De Basanti”. But the real act comes from Ankur Vikal, who is simply superb in the role of Zaid, Sidhaarth’s childhood friend. After few initial scenes he quietly goes on impressing the viewers with his brief dialogues and comes out as a clear winner of them all.
The songs are just fine as they don’t become an obstacle in the movie but background score catches your attention more. Cinematography is great capturing the slum ambience in the right way. Actually editing is the main culprit here, resulting in a 2 hour (still) lengthy movie with many repetitive and seen before sequences in the story. In reality the game of Carom lacks the nail biting essence of an electrifying sport. Therefore it becomes a little boring after the few initial scenes and as a result hampers the beauty of an otherwise new sport on the screen.
To sum up, Chandan Arora, thought of a good subject which did have a novelty value associated with the game of carom and its gambling clubs. He certainly excels in the few sequences depicting the conflict in the life of young unemployed boy. But with a spineless script in hand, he could not turn the novel subject into a great movie for his viewers. Personally I enjoyed his earlier projects a lot more than his latest one.

Rating : 2 / 5


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05 Feb 2010 / Comment ( 0 )
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