Farhan Akhtar made some changes to the legendary Don when he made his version of film in 2006, but with Don 2, he finally got out of the shadow of the colossal original. Here he and Ameet Mehta had the luxury of scripting a contemporary and fresh story and make a film which was their own. Farhan is one of the most creative and original film makers of this country so when he chose to remake a film, I was surprised as I felt that remaking a film like Don was unnecessary as he could easily outsmart a script which was at best a masala potboiler. He did make a suave and highly entertaining remake which will only add to the shine of Big B’s cult classic but with Don 2, Akhtar finally comes into his own.
The story unfolds 5 years after the events of the first film. Don (SRK) who is already the king of Asian underworld makes his move towards Europe which doesn’t go too well with the bosses there. They try to axe him but our man survives only to give himself off into the hands of Roma (Priyanka Chopra) and Malik (Om Puri) in Malaysia. He soon ends up in a jail which is already populated by Vardhan (Boman Irani) his arch enemy. He soon reveals his plans to Vardhan for surrendering in Malaysia and the two escape to Zurich where Don starts planning an elaborate plan which would make him the richest man in the world. What happens next?
With Don 2, Farhan seemed to be having a lot of fun which is easily understood from the smooth flow of the film. The story moves at a brisk speed and contrary to what many critics had to say, I strongly feel that the film has an evenly balanced first and second half. The songs are once again a “pain in the ass” and the film would have done well to ignore them. The action however is a different story. The film is shot so wonderfully well and the actions are choreographed with such finesse that at many junctures, you would have a feel of watching a top notch Hollywood actioner.
The plot is loaded with twists and turns which like the first film makes the character of Don swing between good and evil and on the note in which the film ends, it still remains difficult to judge whether he is a saint or a sinner. Roma is once again played like a harp by Don and left bullet ridden this time. Vardhan poses a bigger challenge to him this time around even though they end up on the same team for a while. Kunal Kapoor plays a hacker with a lot of guts and has an interesting role which also holds the key to the finale of the film. Lara Dutta is unfortunately wasted in a role which is very similar to Isha Koppikar’s Anita for the first film.
The film plays its cards very close to its chest and you have to sit through it till the end to understand how it all ends. The plot twists are not obvious as is the case with most Hindi thrillers. There are however a few huge mishaps and the biggest of them being Hritik Roshan appearing as a disguised Don. I am totally perplexed at how a man of Farhan’s sensibilities could even imagine a scene of this level of absurdity. It is like the grandfather of all anomalies in the history of anomalies in Bollywood films. You just need to ignore this part and forget that it ever existed. Rest of the film is pretty solid entertainment.
I personally liked Don 2 twice as much as I liked Don. The high octane actions, the wonderful cinematography, the razor sharp editing and an interesting screenplay attribute to my decision. Anyone who is looking for some entertainment will lap up this film in its entirety as I did. For many it will also merit a few repeat views. Don 2 has entertainment, entertainment, entertainment! written all over it.