Tubelight

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Tubelight
Tubelight

TUBELIGHT has good intent, but virtually no content!

For a film with a runtime of nearly 2.5 hours, all you see in the film is Salman’s endless wait for his brother, his extended sermon on ‘YAKEEN’ (Self-Belief), and him moving things by just raising his hands in an awkward position, without actually touching them. While it hits the right moral notes and is visually appealing, it is just too hollow and unengaging for a Salman-Khan-Eid-Blockbuster. Avoidable!

In a small picturesque town of North India, lives Laxman (Salman Khan), with his younger brother Bharat (Sohail Khan). The two have no other family and are inseparable. Laxman is a simpleton and is unique in the way he sees the world around him. His brother, Bharat, is fiercely protective of him and the two share a deep bond. Laxman's world comes crashing down, when war breaks out with China and Bharat gets drafted into the Army. A helpless Bharat leaves a devastated Laxman behind. News from the border only worsens, as the tension continues to escalate. Seeing the carnage around him and worried for his brother, the simple - minded Laxman decides he must stop this conflict and get his brother back. Set in 1962 TUBELIGHT tells the story of Laxman's unshakeable belief in himself and the love for his family.

Barring the last year’s thickly-layered SULTAN, all we’ve seen and have come to expect of a Salman Khan bumper release, is an out-and-out “crowd pleaser”. The content may be weak, but the entertainment quotient coupled with chartbuster songs make for a fun outing for the whole family during the festive season. Even the last film of this director -actor duo (Bajrangi Bhaijaan) was a heart-warming simple tale, very unlike the over-the-top blockbusters Salman is known for. But with TUBELIGHT, director Kabir Khan goes a bit too far with his “simple” storytelling – so much so, that there is virtually no plot here, just a few moral lectures combined in a soulless tale. Historically we have seen very simple tales leaving an indelible mark in our hearts, but this one is just too bland and totally devoid of any interestingness whatsoever.

The songs are hummable and catchy, and the picturesque locales depicted are just too attractive. Even the basic concepts of “Self-Belief” and “Rejecting Wars” advocated by the film are relevant and hold promise for so much more in context and content. But it’s a classic case of “opportunity lost”, where writer/director Khan and his team just don’t let the ideas take full shape. There are moments of genuine humour, but it all is forgettable. The conflicts are predictable, hence don’t work, and the track showcasing his bond with the Chinese descendent mother-son duo is uninspiring to say the least. The emotional scenes are literally forced down your throat, yet they fail miserably.

The performances too are caricaturist. Salman Khan is well below par playing the dim-witted simpleton. This performance is even more disappointing as it follows his extremely impressive act in “Sultan”. He fails to touch a chord and just like the film as a whole, his emotions seem forced. Sohail Khan is as usual average, so are the Chinese actor Zhu Zhu and the child actor Martin Rey Tangu. Om Puri shines in a brief role. SRK appears in a cameo that’s strikingly unthoughtful. Even a great actor like Mohd. Zeeshan Ayyub is reduced to a caricature. All others are just passable.

In all, TUBELIGHT lacks all the qualities that make an event film. It’s neither entertaining, nor soulful. This one works for neither masses, nor the classes. A strictly average film which should be seen only if you’re absolutely free. Not recommended!

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