‘Malang’ is a concoction of every Mohit Suri film that deals with bottled up male rage. Generous servings of ‘Murder 2’, ‘Aashiqui 2’ and ‘Ek Villain’ blend with blatant use of psychedelic drugs against a much sanitized backdrop of Mauritius masquerading as Goa and you get a film that boasts of a trippy soundtrack but a plot that’s as sizeable as a hair-strand.
Advait (Aditya Roy Kapur) is a serial killer who murders top cops from the Goa Police Dept. Turns out there seems to be a backstory where his brief romance with Sara (Disha Patani) was cut short by the said policemen. But it doesn’t end there. There’s a fourth cop who’s the next catch in Advait’s quest of cold revenge. The thorns that stand in his path though are the always high Anjaney Agashe (Anil Kapoor) and the straight-laced, upright Michael Rodriguez (Kunal Kemmu).
Written by Aseem Arrora, the story has nothing novel to offer as revenge sagas are as trite as the remains of a forgotten civilisation. It takes a while for the plot to settle and the presence of certain characters aren’t even justified. I really need to know what obligation was the director fulfilling to include Shaad Randhawa for an absolutely needless cameo. The character arcs aren’t entirely convincing because their narratives are not fleshed out enough. While Advait and Sara are hurting and are seeking some calm for their wandering souls, viewers aren’t entirely emphatic because their back-stories are a mere fleeting reference. As observed as a recurrence, the men in Suri’s films are entitled and misled by their rage and egos. But the sudden choice to redeem the woman from falling into the damsel-in-distress trap is vapid and laughable. Not to forget, a late choice too. Equally unconvincing are the backstories that prove why Anil’s Agashe resorts to substance abuse and why is Michael doubtful of himself. The screenplay by Aniruddha Guha however, is competent with parallel storylines blending in seamlessly without rudely interjecting one another. DOP Vikas Sivaraman’s captivating frames evokes wanderlust but the merits of great technicality end with that.
Not that the performances offer any redemption though. Aditya and Disha, both looking their smoking hottest, make a fine couple suitable for a swimsuit calendar. While Aditya still gets the meatier part, somehow there is an overdose of ‘Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani’s’ Avi in his act. Irrespective of which scene she is in, Disha is clearly one-note, though a notch higher than ‘Baaghi 2’. It’s high time that someone mentions why Kapoor Sr is endangering his career by making ill choices. It’s almost five years since the actor upped his game further with ‘Dil Dhadakne Do’ and found a new following amongst the relatively younger fans. But leaving aside, ‘Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga’, the actor’s filmography has been of a huge disservice to his credentials. It’s as if his presence in these films is an act of generosity on his part to help filmmakers save themselves from sinking in mediocrity. Agashe is an experimental character for the actor but the script reduces it to a hammy, hysterical cliché. Alike ‘Kalank’, its only Kunal who gets an interesting part and the actor yet again proves why cynics should overlook his largely Rohit Shetty dominated filmography to make sense of his acting prowess. It’s fitting that Suri has cast the actor who made his debut in the former’s ‘Kalyug’, nearly fifteen years back and won all the best newcomer awards for the same.
Except for a refreshing soundtrack which can prove to be a great addition to your playlist, ‘Malang’ is a largely forgettable affair.