Title: Chandini Chowk to China
Cast: Akshay Kumar, Ranvir Shorey, Deepika Padukone, Mithun Chakraborty, Roger Yuan, Chia Hui Liu.
Akshay helps out at a restaurant in Chandni Chowk, New Delhi. He is extremely superstitious, an orphan and always looking for that one chance that will have him hitting the big time.
The restaurant where Akshay works at is owned by Mithun, who has taken care of Akshay since a wee babe. I have to say, I totally LURVED Mithun here- he is so adorable, so uncle-y- big hug. Mithun looks out for Akshay at every step, and stops him from getting into trouble.
Akshay spends his nights watching late-night TV, where Deepika hosts a HSN-type program, "TSM." The spoofs of HSN ads are really hilarious- I'd see the movie again for that bit :D The girl definitely has comic skills.
Meanwhile, things are happening: a guy called Hojo is lording it up as the local crime boss somewhere in China. The fed-up-to-here villagers decide that the ancient warrior Liu Sheung has been reborn in India, and figure out it is Akshay (how??? we don't know). Incidentally, Hojo is doubly-villainous for our purposes since he has brought up Dipika's twin as an evil-murderous-assassin-type.
So they trek to India (howww do poor Chinese peasants get the money to make the trip???) and find Akshay among the thronging millions in Delhi in about half a minute. Akshay has been quite busy in the meantime, having found a lucky potato (heeh) that looks like Ganesha (another really fun bit).
So Akshay gets conned into going to China, and meets Dipika and her twin and much related comedy ensues, along w/ gangsta-style songs....
But there is work to be done- the 2 Dipikas must be reunited with their dad, who has suffered via Hojo,
and Akshay must avenge Mithun's subsequent death from Hojo's hands and bring justice to the ever-suffering villagers.
Do you doubt he can accomplish this? No? Good then, because how could Akshay lose any fight, anywhere in the world?
1- Akshay, Mithun, Roger Yuan.
2- The movie is the best of its kind- we have had HORRIBLE Bolly Kung-Fu movies, but here we are treated to the good stuff.
1- Most of the significant Chinese shots are done around the Great Wall, with a brief visit to the Forbidden City- which is a waste, since they could have really taken advantage of the beautiful Chinese countryside. At one point, it felt as if the only structure in China was the Wall- we are shown that much of it, that often :)
2- I'd have liked to see more of Chandni Chowk as well. How can you conciously put it in the title of the movie and not show us more of it?
3- Killing off Mithun mid-movie breaks my heart- seriously- who in their right minds would show Mithun dyingggg????
4- Akshay turns so strong with his quickie Kung-Fu training that he breaks parts of the Great Wall as he runs through it- ridiculous. It wasn't meant to be funny, so just ended up being really silly.
5- I am NOT fond of Akshay's emo scenes (actually, I am not fond of emo scenes hardly ever), and here they were just excessive.
So why did it not work?
None of the Cons of the movie are particularly serious- I went in with zero expectations, and found that there were lots of self-referential Bolly humor and decent action to enjoy. I tend to love nonsensical Jackie Chan movies, and found no reason to not love this as well. It can be argued of course that the movie is essentially a cohesion of very basic Kung-Fu formula with very basic Masala- there is nothing innovative being offered here, it is highly unrealistic, and yes, it isn't a "great" movie- but we don't watch Akshay's movies for realism or Satyajit-Ray-esque high-art. I honestly believe that CC2C lays down the benchmark for Bolly-action, and is therefore memorable for that reason alone.