3.5 Very Good

Wanted

Wanted is Salman Khan’s most definitive statement to the film world. If ShahRukh Khan can give an Om Shanti Om and Aamir Khan can give a Ghajini to the masses, he can give something even more explosive and entertaining. Yes, Salman Khan tops other Khans in this South Indian film inspired - action packed explosion that is directed by Prabhudeva, the accomplished choreographer. Salman doesn’t have his over-the-top accent or his fake tears to accompany him in this venture that takes him from a tapori to a ruthless terminator of the underworld. Wanted is exaggerated, preposterous and laughable but that is exactly what it was meant to be. Prabhudeva has strong roots in South Indian cinema where action is fast paced with jerky camera motions that send everyone flying high but to incorporate all this into an entertaining movie deserves some pat on his back. He may not be a renowned film maker but he knows exactly what it takes to deliver an explosive action movie and boy does he do it in style!
Radhe (Salman Khan) is a tapori who can commit himself to any task for the money involved to the extent that he wouldn’t even listen to himself – “Ek baar jo maine commitment kar diya, toh phir main apne aap ki bhi nahi suntan” is the repeated dialogue that we hear and he means it. Ayesha Takia is his love interest that never gets in his way of killing goons and fighting his way through the day. Where the heroine of a film can easily distract the plot and hero, Prabhudeva manages to keep her role restricted to songs and light hearted relief after a heavy doze of action. Just like his character, Salman Khan is a one man army in the movie. His performance, action and even Prabhudeva - choreographed dancing is the heart and soul of the film. Wanted is easily one of his best performances that has encompassed all that he is capable of doing (excluding comedy).
While the romantic breaks and songs are nothing more than a restroom or samosa break for the viewer, the action is relentless and even though it is over-the-top in typical South Indian film style, it is nevertheless, kick-ass and ruthless! If Hollywood can be proud of Tarantino’s Kill Bill style of action, then we must be proud of Prabhudeva’s version of stylized action. We are not talking about realistic fight sequences or martial arts but of what we remember Sunny Deol’s movies for - ruthless, high octane, one man show of just knocking the man down with fists, kicks, guns or whatever comes in our hero’s hands. There is no mercy in showcasing blood and gore because when we see Salman Khan all charged up to deliver the other guy straight to hell, we can see him as the Terminator without an automatic weapon. He is an unstoppable force who is not deterred by Police, gangs, underworld, knives, guns or sharp objects. He just flings them right back in Rajnikant style and that is what makes this movie even more enjoyable. Just go watch it with this notion in mind that it is a Rajnikant style action film but made in Bollywood with Salman Khan taking on whatever comes in his way and you shall then be entertained.
Prabhudeva leaves no chapter out from the book of ‘how to make a masala movie’ with a non-stop delivery of excitement with occasional humour, romance, songs, drama, reality, action and unbelievable heroics. He makes Salman perform every ritual that we can expect and not expect. Who knew that the ‘sturdy’ Salman could dance with such flexibility and style in love me?? He acts fearless against the biggest Don, challenges and embarrasses Policemen, reaches Andheri station even before the train gets there, is available wherever his need arises, shows no mercy to anyone who inflicts harm upon his family or his loved one and yes, ofcourse, he takes his shirt off while doing so as well!
The film may be a bit too long and the random songs on international hotspots maybe unwarranted but when we see Salman as an unstoppable force, we know it’s clobbering time! Salman hasn’t lost his position in Bollywood and with Wanted, he asserts himself in the most convincing manner. The masses will love it because the film was made for them but overall, it’s entertainment that comes with its warnings. Prabhudeva, from down South, delivers what many Hindi film directors have failed on countless attempts. An entertaining action flick with all the masala to add to your popcorn.
-7.44 on a scale of 1-10.