The first sign that perhaps all was not well with Shah Rukh Khan’s ZERO was that instead of a Thursday release in the Middle East, it got released today along with the release in India. A flattering comment that I received from one of my friends was that if I wrote negatively about the movie, then it would affect the first day collections in India! And the makers didn’t want to risk this! Notwithstanding this, a few of my friends volunteered to watch this today morning at 8 50 am along with us, more to give us company on the last movie that we would be watching in Muscat before our departure. There were two screens screening the First Day First Show and we were rather surprised that one of the screens had zero attendance; the other screen which had just eight of our friends watching had a total attendance of eight! And that too after King Khan had flown in here last week for a few hours to do a promo for ZERO!
Anand Rai, the director of good movies like RAANJHANA and the TANU WEDS MANU series is the director for ZERO; Himanshu Sharma the writer has also been an award winning writer associated with this director. And apart from the well advertised fact that King Khan, Anushka Sharma and Katrina Kaif are the lead characters of ZERO, a string of Bollywood luminaries including the Late Sridevi, and all of SRK’s leading ladies in his successful movies including Juhi Chawla, Kajol and Alia Bhatt have cameo roles. And Salman Khan, Abhay Deol and Madhavan also chip in slightly longer cameo roles. And so does Eli, the chimpanzee, which has starred in several US TV series. So you can understand why it was difficult for me to go with ZERO expectations about ZERO.
You would have got an inkling by now as to what I felt about ZERO!
The first half of ZERO certainly has energy in virtually every scene and that credit must go to SRK and the crispy dialogues. And his get up as a four foot something nearing forty has been done quite well; and so does the story which for the better part of the first half stays in Meerut. Even Katrina who is known for wooden expressions infuses emotions. The song Jab Tak Jahaan mein has a lilting melody, although it sounds like one of SARAAT’s hit songs ( both have music composed by Ajay Atul).
Unfortunately, the second half drives the movie into an orbit (even the story reaches out to Mars, the red planet) of disaster, from which it finds it difficult to escape. If the movie had concluded by half time, I might have given it 3 on 5, but the second half scores an absolute ZERO and thus this heavyweight production collapses.
RATING: 1.5 out of 5
21 December 2018