A Flying Jatt borrows heavily from Hollywood. (YouTube)
A Flying Jatt borrows heavily from Hollywood. (YouTube)

A Flying Jatt review: This Indian superhero borrows heavily from Hollywood

His father was the first Sikh to train at the Shaolin school of martial arts and his mother is a fireball personified. His city is under threat and millions of lives are at stake. But, he won’t do his superhero act unless a small child screams: A Flying Jatt.
By Rohit Vats | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON AUG 26, 2016 05:32 PM IST

A Flying Jatt
Cast: Tiger Shroff, Jacqueline Fernandez, Nathan Jones
Director: Remo D’Souza
Rating: 2.5/5

His father was the first Sikh to train at the Shaolin school of martial arts and his mother is a fireball personified. His city is under threat and millions of lives are at stake. But, he won’t do his superhero act unless a small child screams: A Flying Jatt.

Somehow the pattern of superhero films seeps into the structure, but what matters is the treatment and how the ‘local’ touch has been added. A Flying Jatt borrows heavily from Hollywood superhero clichés and mixes them with popular Bollywood formula.

After Shaktiman and Krrish, Aman is the third Indian superhero. (YouTube)
After Shaktiman and Krrish, Aman is the third Indian superhero. (YouTube)

In a Kung Fu Hustle-inspired set-up, Mrs Dhillon (Amrita Singh) runs a colony where nobody pays her the rent. She loves her drink and has no filter on her mouth. Her happy-go-unlucky son Aman (Tiger Shroff) is a martial arts teacher and is in love with Kirti (Jacqueline Fernandez).

Their colony is a thorn in the eyes of Malhotra (Kay Kay Menon), an unethical businessman, for he wants to build a bridge through it.

Our hero is yet to discover his powers because this is what superheroes do. They find their actual self much later in life. Just like most Hollywood superheroes.

Raka (Nathan Jones), a terrible growler, is hired to wipe off Mrs Dhillon’s colony but he transforms into an even worse growler after realising that he feeds on pollution. There’s an indigenous angle. Chacha Choudhary’s Raka, not pollution.

Traits added to this Indian superhero by Remo D’Souza work sometimes. Acrophobia restricts Aman from flying high, and dogs don’t let him land. He obeys traffic signals even during his flight and keeps trying funny costumes on his mother’s insistence.

The film features some trendy numbers. (YouTube)
The film features some trendy numbers. (YouTube)

But, he goes back to Spiderman for a cue on his love life: The hidden identity and the first kiss. A bit of Wolverine doesn’t harm him either. An action sequence shows him change into Quicksilver (X-Men: Days Of Future Past) where everything is slow compared to his speed.

Sin City also comes into play when Jones and Shroff face-off in mud, dark and rain. There are other ‘inspirations’ as well. And, mind you, these are the popular ones and easy to recognise.

Being in-your-face preachy about pollution, however, doesn’t help. It keeps dragging as if the director isn’t sure about the viewer’s grasping power.

It’s not that Remo doesn’t know his characters. From a friendzoned teacher to a flashy tycoon to a giggling beauty, his typical people are there, but he needed much more to hold the audience’s attention in this film with a long second half.

Shroff is agile and earnest too. His love for acrobatics serves the purpose but a religious overdose dampens the spirit. Superheroes need to rise on their own after a while. His comic skills are at work and this may go down well with kids who’re in search of someone to replace Krrish as their favourite Indian superhero. Or, is it still Shaktiman?

Watch: Our FB Live discussion on A Flying Jatt

Amrita Singh is loud yet funny. Gaurav Pandey as her second son adds substantially to the family drama.

What’s a Remo film without groovy numbers and trendy dancing! There, ‘Beat pe booty’ and the title track may interest you.

Watch: Trailer of Tiger Shroff’s A Flying Jatt

A Flying Jatt begins on a good note, picks up the pace, throws some light-hearted moments, and then faces the curse of the second half. It drags its feet from becoming the smart film just when it’s needed and goes for the all-explaining commentary.

Without the spoon-feeding, it would have become a much more entertaining film.

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