Race 2 is essentially a big-budget cartoon in which coolness is all. The director duo Abbas-Mustan (this is how they credit themselves in the titles) have no pretensions about what they are making – full-on masala with a dash of revenge, a slice of heist and characters who are either strutting their chiselled bodies in slow motion or betraying each other.
The frame is crowded with good-looking people, mouth-watering cars, casinos, gargantuan hotels, planes and yachts. The money being tossed around is, and I hope you’re sitting down for this, 15 billion Euros. It’s the good life, and because this is a comic book, there are no consequences. So in the first few minutes, Deepika Padukone as the luscious Elena (described as ‘half-sister, full shaani’), murders a man and coolly walks out of the frame with hair artfully blowing back.
I went into Race 2 totally prepared to have a blast, but here’s the shocker: The first half is just plain boring. Once you’re done admiring Istanbul’s stunning locations, Deepika’s sheer gorgeousness and John Abraham’s carbohydrate-defying abs, there isn’t much to do.
The fun only starts post-interval, when Race 2 becomes a heist movie. The loot is – and I hope you are still sitting down – the Shroud of Turin. Then the plot twists and turns and climaxes with a laugh-out-loud action sequence on a plane.
The first Race was also pure popcorn, but the twists were delicious and the characters were interesting. Here, writer Shiraz Ahmed and Abbas-Mustan were relying so much on style that they forgot about screenplay – this is a film in which even character artiste Rajesh Khattar gets a high-speed-walk moment.
The action sequences are hobbled by lame special effects. And there aren’t any killer lines – though I probably will remember Anil Kapoor as ex-cop Robert D’Costa telling his new assistant Cherry, played by a cheerfully ditzy Ameesha Patel: ‘Cherry I don’t have time to pop your cherry’.
Yes, Race 2 is that kind of film.