Bholaa review: The return of Ajay Devgn-Tabu in a larger-than-life action spectacle

It ends with a surprise package that will translate into a second instalment


Another Ajay Devgn-Tabu starrer has hit the big screen. For Bholaa, Tabu slips back into the cop-mode with Ajay Devgn playing the lead, this time helping her navigate the thugs and saving her life. 

Devgn plays a goon who is out of jail after a decade, and on a mission to meet his daughter who lives in an orphanage. On his way, he encounters a cop-in-need Tabu, who seeks his help to reach the police station before the drug cartel finds their seized drugs. How they do it and how Devgn does his bit more than the cops in fighting the drug lords becomes the story of Bholaa. The film is a remake of the Tamil film Kaithi and had Karthi in the lead. 

Directed by Devgn himself, Bholaa is a superhero in disguise – not much so as a character but with his strengths. He is nearly immortal – he never dies despite being stabbed twice, even though the goons he fights die with Devgn's single power punches. Now and then, Makarand Deshpande appears on screen, narrating the tales of Bholaa's greatness – how he is infallible, the all-powerful uber-human. 

While Tabu and Ajay Devgn's stunning pairing yet again in a typical action film holds the attention till the end, Deepak Dobriyal's portrayal of an eccentric goon with kohl-rimmed eyes is praiseworthy. Sanjay Mishra, as a cop in his fifties, who manages to command the police station as a one-man army even as hundreds of goons try to break into it, and how he eventually kills the antagonist, makes for a good watch too. Amala Paul's short cameo playing Devgn's love interest is just as fresh as Deepak Dobriyal playing a dangerous antagonist. 

However, the film does falter with its stereotypes. The good cop fighting the bad goons, unbelievable action and Tabu once again play a cop with Ajay Devgn in the lead. Bholaa, however, sticks to the sexist stereotype by including Raai Lakshmi's 'item number' with suggestive dance steps in which Lakshmi dances around, enticing hundreds of men who match suggestive steps with her. 

The film ends with a surprise package that will translate into a second instalment of Bholaa – Abhishek Bachchan in a Terminator-like cameo, giving new enemies for Devgn to fight in the next film. Though he almost hits a century with his killings of goons and there are none left to fight in the end. 

The film is a watchable entertainer for the action-craving audiences giving them larger-than-life two-and-a-half hours of their lives, which is understandably the current cinematic pull for the filmmakers to get audiences into theatres. 


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