In this fast changing scenario, when more and more innovative themes are being attempted by film-makers in Bollywood, you still come across films that are stuck up in the 1980s' jaded formulae.
The Indian cinegoer has witnessed parents/families opposing the young lovers in an umpteen number of films before - from Q.S.Q.T. to MAINE PYAR KIYA to D.D.L.J.
So, what's new in RUN? Nothing! It's old wine packaged in a new bottle. Not only is the film low on content, it's even low on entertainment!
Siddharth aka Siddhu [Abhishek Bachchan] comes to Delhi for further studies. He spots the beautiful Jhanavi [Bhoomika Chawla] and is attracted to her instantaneously. Little does he know that she carries with her an excess baggage that threatens to take his life away.
This excess baggage is Jhanavi's demonic brother Ganpat [Mahesh Manjrekar], who's overtly possessive of his sister. For him, the hand that dares to touch Jhanavi's heart just has to be cut.
Ganpat leaves no stone unturned to make life hell for Siddharth. Finally, Siddharth devises a foolproof way to combat the devious Ganpat.
Remake of the Tamil hit RUN [Madhavan, Meera Jasmine], the Hindi adaptation is only as 'fresh' in its concept as last month's newspaper headlines.
The problem with RUN is that the viewer can actually predict what's going to happen next. To look for anything novel in the film is akin to finding a needle in a haystack. From the word 'go', director Jeeva relies on the same old recipe to convey what he intends to.
The story hardly moves in the first half. There's an overdose of songs [most of these are 'dream songs'!], which pop up every 10 minutes without valid situations. Besides, there's a comedy track - Vijay Raaz - which has no relevance to the story of the film. Of course, there's Mahesh Manjrekar, who is supposed to be a goonda, but does nothing more than bash up guys who keep making passes at his sister.
If the first half is bland [Abhishek confronting Manjrekar's henchmen is the sole watchable sequence in the first half], the post-interval portions take the graph of the film completely down. Mainly because, till almost halfway through the second half, the story hardly moves ahead.
The lovers continue to meet, away from the prying eyes of the overtly possessive brother. And even the brother doesn't confront the guy head-on.
You expect things to pep up towards the pre-climax, when the guy [Abhishek Bachchan] is sacked from the college, a speeding truck knocks down his sister [Ayesha Julka] and the brother-in-law [Mukesh Rishi] is falsely planted in a corruption case. That's when the narrative gets slightly exciting.
But the climax is again archaic. Abhishek is beaten black and blue by Manjrekar's cronies, but he suddenly gets up and bashes up Manjrekar in true filmi style. Thus, the hand-to-hand fight between Abhishek and Manjrekar fails to evoke any reactions from the viewer.
Ditto for the romance between Abhishek and Bhumika. All through the first half, the girl does not respond to his overtures, but when she confesses her love in the second half, it's done in such a fashion that your heart doesn't beat for the lovers when they find themselves in a crisis.
Director Jeeva is just not able to get the viewer hooked on to the proceedings because he is saddled with an outdated story [N. Linguswamy]. Having an obsolete or mundane story is still pardonable, but RUN doesn't even have any twist in the tale or a stimulating screenplay. The film also does not connect with the viewer because it tends to get monotonous after a point, more so towards the post-interval portions.
From the script point of view, the film offers no reason why Manjrekar opposes Abhishek throughout. In fact, not once does Manjrekar confront his sister even though he knows that she has been meeting him secretly. Strange, isn't it?
Himesh Reshammiya's music is tuneful and thanks to some good promotion, you tend to hum the songs when it plays on the big screen. But, as mentioned earlier, the songs are not an integral part of the story but are used as a commercial ingredient since a love story is incomplete without songs. It won't be wrong to state that a few songs have been wasted in the film.
Cinematography [Jeeva] is better than his direction. Action sequences [Peter Hain] are well executed, but the sequences are so raw that it might tend to put off the ladies and family audiences. Dialogues [Kamal Pandey] are alright.
Abhishek Bachchan provides some engaging moments thanks to his performance. He seems to be taking a step forward with every film. Bhoomika Chawla doesn't get much scope to display histrionics. She run through her part mechanically. Mahesh Manjrekar has a half-baked role, but he enacts it like a seasoned performer. But if you expect him to steal the show, like in KAANTE, you'll be sorely disappointed.
Cast in different roles, Ayesha Julka and Mukesh Rishi are passable. Goga Kapoor is adequate. Vijay Raaz tends to go overboard. In fact, the digs against his parents [calling his father Anjan Shrivastava a crow and what not!] is in bad taste.
On the whole, RUN is too weak a fare to leave any impact whatsoever.