Google fb32x32 twitter linkedin feed-icon-32x32

Film Review: Tees Maar Khan

Film Review: Tees Maar Khan

December 24, 2010
Pulkit Datta

Farah Khan’s latest film is one of the biggest duds of this year – even ‘Sheila ki Jawani’ can’t save this one!

It’s about time Bollywood filmmakers stop using the “leave your brains at home” mantra for making and marketing masala films. In most cases, it justifies the existence of incredibly pointless films that even fail to do the one thing they promise – entertain. Farah Khan’s latest film, Tees Maar Khan (written by her husband Shirish Kunder), is a prime example of this. It is an astoundingly complete ensemble of everything that can go wrong with a film - paper-thin plot, embarrassing writing, atrocious acting and uninspired directing. All in all, this is probably one of the worst films of the year, and what a shame since it’s the big Christmas offering and is the last big release of 2010 for Bollywood.

When names like Farah Khan, Akshay Kumar, Katrina Kaif, UTV and Vishal-Shekhar come together, a certain standard of at least somewhat entertaining cinema is expected. I’m not even asking for anything path breaking or intelligent. But this film takes buffoonery and hamming to a whole new level.

The basic premise is that of a wanted criminal – Tabrez Mirza Khan a.k.a Tees Maar Khan (Akshay Kumar) – who we are told is such a genius that he can escape from any prison and rob treasure big enough to bring down India’s economy, that too from a moving train. What he comes off as, instead, is a half-baked character that makes up everything as he goes along, much like the way the film seems to have been made. He has in his posse three henchmen called Burger, Dollar and Soda (need I say more?), an annoyingly dumb Bollywood starlet girlfriend Anya (Katrina Kaif) and a melodramatic mother who thinks her son is a famous film director. When the villains of the film – the conjoined twins the Johri brothers - ask Tabrez to rob the moving train, he hatches a plan to mount a fake film shoot and get a village full of gullible people and Oscar-aspirant superstar Aatish Kapoor (Akshaye Khanna) to unwittingly help him loot the train. Why a supposedly experienced actor doesn’t get suspicious when the entire robbery is filmed as a single handheld take is beyond me. But then again, it’s silly of me to expect an iota of logic here.

One of the most annoying aspects of TMK is that literally no one (and I mean, no one) knows how to talk in a normal tone of voice. It is two hours of constant yelling and exaggerated tones, with expressions and movements as jittery as a baby on caffeine. I’m all for a loud comedy if it’s done right but there is a skill to that too – the yelling and exaggerated movements must have their own timing. This felt more like the actors and filmmaker telling the viewer each time they think they told a joke. Take, for example, each time the Johri brothers talk to their informant over the phone. They get confused whenever he ends his call with “Over and out,” asking each other which cricket match is going on, who got out and how many overs are left. That was a funny cricket reference, did you get it? You should laugh now.

The only redeeming part of TMK is the sizzling dance number ‘Sheila Ki Jawani’ sung by Sunidhi Chauhan and filmed on Kaif. In this song sequence Farah Khan shows her talent with putting together thumping music, sensual choreography and jazzy production design to make what is essentially a music video forced into the film. The song comes in early on in the film and everything goes downhill afterwards. The film quickly degenerates into taking digs at everyone in the film business from Aamir Khan and Anil Kapoor to Danny Boyle and Manoj Night Shamalan. As an embarrassingly offensive joke, Tabrez pretends to be ‘Manoj Day Ramalan’ and explains that his brother has the name ‘Night’ because he was born at night and is therefore dark. Later, we are introduced in the village to three effeminate men, all wearing pink, who are casually called ‘ladies’ by Kaif. All the characters are constantly lost in their own stupidity, which creates a huge disconnect with the viewer.

Khan’s first two films – Main Hoon Na and Om Shanti Om – actually seemed like classier entertainers compared to TMK. There was also a certain level of emotional connect in the first two films. It makes me wonder how much the superstar power of the lead actor has an impact on the film as a whole. In this case, there is a marked difference in style, approach and resonance when Khan made her shift from Shah Rukh Khan to Akshay Kumar.

As is now customary with Farah Khan films, TMKtoo is littered with filmic references and cameos, but never before has she gone so nauseatingly over the top. There is also an obsessive reference to the Oscars, which spills over into the end credits where all the cast and crew are given awards in a classic case of self-flattery. While I always appreciate Khan’s generosity in giving her entire crew their five seconds of screen time in her films, the awards sequence concept here seems highly ironic for a film that tortures the viewer for its entire duration. But then again, I guess it’s just as well they award themselves because no one else will.


  • wareesha
    10.01.11 09:02 PM
    wah shila kia bat hai ap ki
  • Gurvinder
    02.01.11 02:28 PM
    Saw TMK last week.....absolutely rubbish.Farah Khan has really dissapointed us with this movie...just like Chandni Chow to she really that great a Director ??
  • Divs
    29.12.10 02:13 PM
    Agree. A pathetic movie with loose story line and exaggerated acting. Here's my review:
  • Charla
    28.12.10 01:27 PM
    It's not Farah who is at fault. It is Shirish with his bad writing skills. We already saw what kind of bad writer he is with Jaaneman (nobody liked it and it was HEAVILY inspired by Kal Ho Naa Ho) and now he shamelessly copies After the Fox and hopes that the most unintelligent and worst actor of today, akshay kumar, can save his film by screaming, yelling, jumping and doing useless stuff because he had two or three succesfull comedies?? (out of 20 in the last 5 yrs??)

    And he hoped with Farah directing it, it might have a chance of becoming a hit. Well, apparently Farah Khan cannot direct a script which isnt written by her. Tough luck!

    And Farah was telling in her interviews how the script has to be good. Well, I would like to ask her how she felt that this script was good and in what way? She wrote good films herself, so her judgement isnt bad. Maybe she just did it for her husband. Who knows?

    conclusion: TMK sucks!!!
  • samena
    27.12.10 07:47 PM
    I found this movie very offensive. Showing muslims are thiefs and showing that muslims can make hindus stupid by using sentimental issues such as love for their country.

    Also, lying and then covering up by saying Allah ke kasam main nahin hun tmk. Showing muslims as liars that would even use God to cover themselves.

    All in all, a worthless piece of Sh*t that offends all
  • Pulkit
    27.12.10 02:55 AM
    Thanks all!

    @Umesh: I think more than UP and Bihar, films like these are almost always guaranteed good opening weekends because of powerful marketing. Their goal is to get the first three days house full and then they're good.

    @Baljit: I agree but I don't think Farah Khan is a bad filmmaker - I didn't think her last two films were that bad. They were silly too but they had some more intelligent humor. Something went horribly wrong with TMK.

    @Tony: It really is sad that comedies that insult viewer intelligence keep getting made. Unfortunately, this will continue, especially since TMK has had the third biggest opening day collections EVER. This is encouragement enough for such filmmakers to keep churning out such films.

    @S.R.Ayyangar: Marketing is their greatest strength. The world's worst movie can be made to look appealing and warrant at least one viewing based solely on marketing. That's what happened with TMK too. Make everyone want to go see it at least once and you've made your money back. I'm sure the same will happen with TMK too, which is rather unfortunate. There are so many great films being made that don't get the attention they deserve.
  • Shrinidhi Hande
    Shrinidhi Hande
    26.12.10 04:39 PM
    Thanks for the review! Saves lot of money for others
  • S.R.Ayyangar
    26.12.10 12:47 PM
    But every one including Farah Khan are putting a brave face on TV show promos.
  • Rajiv
    26.12.10 06:21 AM
    hey nicely written. same opinion here. i have used your opinion in my post. chk here
  • Tony
    25.12.10 07:51 PM
    What a sad way to see Bollywood directors keep on giving the audience cheap scale stupid comedy.

    I thought after "No Problem" a director cant hit it more low, but TMK is as bad as No Problem.

    Akki is Bollwywoods most overrated "superstar"...he doesnt deserve this title, and his acting is same same. Katrina should never have been in a Hindi movie, but again our Public doesnt look at talent anymore, they just wanna see a half naked body.

    Stay Away from TMK, and save ur Christmas and New-Year :)
  • Baljit Nagpal
    Baljit Nagpal
    25.12.10 08:06 AM
    I also agree with your review whole heardtedly. Does Farah Khan think people/viewers are stupid. Does she also compare herself with the directors such as Aamir Khan, Yash Chopra, Aditya Chopra, Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Vidhu Vinod Chopra ando ther good Directors. She is no where close to thier Intelligence.

    I have never seen such a stupit movie and that too to end the year,. I would rate it for an award for the best worst film of 2010.
  • Charla Manohar
    Charla Manohar
    24.12.10 06:42 PM
    Every Akshay Kumar film is about screaming as loud as you can. I think people are finally getting sick of his idiotic behaviour.

    SRK made the right choice to say NO to this film!!
  • vishal gaba
    vishal gaba
    24.12.10 05:56 PM
    Coudnt agree with you more...its a king sized dissapointment...adds to the duds of 2010 and Akshay's list of flops!

    here is my review -
  • Umesh
    24.12.10 04:08 PM
    Movie maker using cheap gimmicks of Item number think that this will make their investment good since people from UP and Bihar will throng the C.Halls, but now a days majority of people even from these states have changed likes and cheap studd doenot sell any more, unless it is legends like ABs ( Bunty & Babbly) etc.

    I feel the same about all the movies of Akki and they are a piece of shit. H eshould better go back to Bangkok and do what he is good at....

Leave a comment