A Dabangg Review

Everyone has had their Dabangg say; now is my turn. For those of you still clueless about what Dabangg means, here’s the meaning – ‘one who cannot be suppressed’.

The dubangg man, Chulbul Pandey (Salman Khan) who loves to call himself Robin Hood, is an incorrigibly corrupt police officer in a place called Lalganj in UP. This ‘Robin Hood’ is always warring with a local small-time goon politician over territory and money. Mostly money.

So, he and his team of all moustachioed policemen chase the goons for their own means. Typically, as is the case in the movies aimed at UP-Bihar masses (or for that matter, movies of South), rest all policemen are sidekicks and it is the one-man-army-hero Salman who bashes them all.

At home, even though Chulbul Pandey is a typical doting ma-ka-ladla, he has an on-and-off inimical relationship with his stepbrother and stepfather. So, Salman gets to spars some more at home.

As if that is not enough, he goes on to woo Jabraat Rota Rajo (Sonakshi Sinha) in a cringing, chauvinistic style. (For those who are not scared of possible spoilers, look for the reasons in the notes at the bottom.)

That’s pretty much the plot –whenever scriptwriter woke up he added few subplots and some connecting threads, almost as an afterthought. You wonder why they bothered.  And sometimes, they explained too much as if we are too dumb.

But then Dabangg is not at all about a good story, it’s meant to be entertainment. It is ‘Wanted’ with UP ka tadka. UP dialect sometimes tapers to Bihari and at times, you hear Haryanvi. As my friend commented, consistency of dialect is too much to ask for. 🙂

Hmm, the cast –where should I begin? Except Salman and Arbaaz, rest of the entire star-studded cast is underused. Contrary to most opinions, I felt Arbaaz was alright as idiot, hammy brother. Dimple, Vinod Khanna, Mahesh Manjrekar, Anupam Kher and Om Puri – all of them were there with little to do. It took me sometime to even realise that was Mahesh Manjrekar. Oh, and there was Mahi Gill (from DevD) in a teeny role opposite Arbaaz. [Tell me, is it just me that whenever I see her on screen, I remember her riding a bicycle in fields with a mattress tied to the carrier. ;)]

As for, Sonakshi, except for one song where she looked divine at places, I didn’t like her much. Mostly because she wasn’t required to do more than be a village doll with vacant stares. Some might add she doesn’t look like a doll –it’s hard to tell that she is so much younger than Salman.

Music: I like hud hud Dabangg even though Munni badnaam hui is current hit. Two other songs, according to me, were wasted, not needed in the movie.

What is in it for you – Well, there is Salman Khan, his antics –the chutzpah, his thumkas – which are no less than munni Malaika’s, the rip-off action scenes (they’ll look familiar), and some money shots –shirtless Salman. Then, there is some educational info about various holes in your body and their purpose. Bit of hygiene and use of left hand.  If that kind of humour works for you.

Rating: 2.5/5 (Add 0.5 for your company in the theatre)

P.S: I can say your company does contribute to your experience of watching such movies. Watching it in a packed theatre with cat calls booming all over and friends with whom you can joke around is best way to get to it. It’s going to be hard to watch with a serious crowd that stares at the screen agog.

Read a hilarious account of Dabangg frenzy by my friend Vee and this professional review by WOGMA.

More notes, possible spoilers: One entire extra sequence – one in the thane (police station) followed by that song-dance in yellow shirt should have been cut out; it was neither funny nor important to the plot.

Weird editing – for example, the flight scene after wedding night.

Salman Khan’s attire at home is hilarious – thick-soled floaters and lungi. Add to that his expression.

Inhaler is either pump or fusfus. 😀

My take away dialogue: Cast your vote, but don’t vote your caste. 🙂

Cringeworthy wooing: Once, Salman tells Sonakshi – I’ll wait for your father to die so that I can marry you. On her father’s death, he shoos away the mourners and asks her to pack her bags saying, tumhari life bana rahe hain. Hmm, tell me why didn’t she slap him? 😦

Interesting that DevD strains flow in the wedding scene and a song from Wanted is used as a ringtone in a funny ‘action’ scene with a goon. I laughed at that one, it was beacon of more of silliness to arrive.

As an aside, I am still employing some of my grey cells to conclude which part of his character was ‘giving to poor’, after all, wasn’t that what Robin Hood did. No, don’t tell me that episode about sharing his booty with that policeman; it was not charity.

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29 Responses to “A Dabangg Review”


  1. 1 Ava September 23, 2010 at 8:40 am

    hehe… very funny. Everyone is going mad over this one.

  2. 2 PA September 23, 2010 at 9:49 am

    Hahaha! Loved the review!

  3. 3 Prats September 23, 2010 at 11:09 am

    You right after eons of centuries and what you write on is Dabang…. The movie must have had some mettle in it 😛

    • 4 Poonam Sharma September 23, 2010 at 11:22 am

      I expected someone to comment on that – but mostly Smita and Vee. And for what its mettle is worth I gave it 3. 😛 I have more movie review drafts in waiting – hopefully they will come soon. 🙂

  4. 5 Poonam September 23, 2010 at 11:24 am

    Ava, PA: Thank you, folks, glad you liked it. PA, did you watch the movie?

  5. 6 Sangeetha September 23, 2010 at 11:39 am

    Ha ha ha…. One of the good ones on Dabangg so far 🙂 I haven’t dared watch it – not a Salman fan and cheap humour doesn’t work for me 😦

  6. 7 Smita September 23, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Kamaal karte ho yaar, itne din baad review kiya and that too Salman Khan movie! Ek do aur movies dekho uski and u will be his die hard fan! Uska magic hi kucch aisa hai 😉

    In fact see some his movies with me 😀 😛

    I am watching it today on my DVD ati sundar aur saaf print aa gayi gai!!!

  7. 8 Hypermom September 23, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    Poonam the movie must have been something to make you come out with a review! Gosh after reading the spoilers I am glad I din’t go to watch it. I guess I am 20 or rather 30 years too old to appreciate the humour

  8. 9 Poonam Sharma September 23, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    Sangeeta: Thanks girl for the comment and spreading the word. You ain’t missing much by not watching, but you can go in to joke about its silliness if you have nothing better to do.

    Smita: I love it that you are such a big optimist and a sport. 🙂 We will see, about me being a fan. I have never idolized anyone or supported someone blindly. Perhaps, except Sachin. I am ardent admirer and forgiving to all his flaws and failures – which are so few, btw. Bus. I am neutral to most people.

    Nice, you finally watch it and do share your view, even though I already know what it’s gonna be.

    Hypermom: I mostly wrote it because balance of review was getting lost. Too much undeserved hype. Someone wrote in review – even ‘Levis-wearing person’ loves it – as if that is the indicator of worthiness of the movie. I know what you mean by being too old for that kind of humour. I face it, lot many times in life. But then again, I won’t diss it completely since as I mention, going with right people has made worst possible movies worthwhile for me. I went for Dabangg only because I had those friends to watch with (and wanted to see for self what hype was about). Honest to God.

  9. 10 Radha September 23, 2010 at 2:34 pm

    Firstly, great to see you write.. Your blog doesn’t deserve to be ignored, you know 🙂
    Loved the review and the spoilers are good to know information, I am yet to watch the movie. In college, we always watched Salman movies, in huge groups of course. So, the movie score was 0.5 and the company score was 3 🙂
    And yes, every time I see Mahie Gill on screen, I inevitably think of her riding the cycle with the mattress..and then I think of Abhay Deol..and then I can’t think of anything else 😀

    • 11 Poonam Sharma September 23, 2010 at 6:48 pm

      Radha, as always, you are kind. Believe me, I am trying to find a schedule to post regularly.

      Glad you loved it, mostly I don’t write reviews now because I think there is not much I can add. But in this case, mass opinion is against me. I meet a like-minded friend who told me people were arguing with her opinion. Also, I had too much exposure of Dabangg by own my volition, more on that later.

      Yes, company score is very important for this movie. 3 would make a movie like this one worthwhile.

  10. 12 Ruchika September 23, 2010 at 4:31 pm

    Wow!! The spoilers are makers for me…. I was contemplating if I should watch this film after some people said they watched it twice and that the film is doin big business…… thanks…..

    Arrrrgggh! Salman and his cheap antics….. Don’t know when will he realize that his antics are reaching a nadir and that he should STOP for god’s sake….

    • 13 Poonam Sharma September 23, 2010 at 8:56 pm

      Ruchika, girl, you made writing the spoilers worthwhile. Well, Salman will always have his die-hard fans. Scroll down and see a friend, Vee, dissing my review. 🙂 The current Tehelka issue tells that Salman fans are so die-hard that even in case of his worst movies (Yuvraaj, Veer) they say, Bhai ne is baar galat picture sign kar li’. That is, it is not Salman’s fault, poor him is victim. This matter of Salman followers is research-worthy. 🙂

  11. 14 praneshachar September 23, 2010 at 8:02 pm

    Firstly your post on ur own blog after a loooongggg gap is welcome. Review matters not much. I have not seen but whatever has been said about it not impressed sooo much. But box office is creating big news !!!! Your comment too tells me dont watch its not worth. BUt the way you have written makes me to think why cant see to njoy what all u hv mentioned about UP Bihar Lol!!!
    anyhow look forward for more interesting posts on the subject most dear to your heart. welcome back after a break Dabang and dubang

    • 15 Poonam Sharma September 23, 2010 at 8:53 pm

      Thanks, Praneshachar, I have few more movie reviews to post. Hopefully, I will write more stuff that I am known to write. Thanks for all the love and encouragement always. 🙂

  12. 16 Vee September 23, 2010 at 8:23 pm

    Dislike, Dislike, Dislike… Hurr Hurr Hurr

    P.S. Music was nicely blended and there were not many songs… May be u felt that cuz movie was of short duration. Kuchh bhi bas…huh

    P.S.1 How could you miss Mahesh. My 10 year old niece immediately recognized him and asked me ‘ye wahi hai na jo Wanted me police inspector tha’ …

    P.S.2 Dislike, Dislike, Dislike

    • 17 Poonam Sharma September 23, 2010 at 8:58 pm

      Hahaha – yeh to mujhe pata hi tha – that you will say this. Ab bhaqton ko kya kya ja sakta hai, ek kaam kar – you three folks should get together on a collection drive and build a Salman temple? 😛 I promise to donate for the sake of our friendship. 😉

  13. 18 Praveen September 23, 2010 at 11:56 pm

    I wonder when will salman elarn acting:P

    saw this yesterday…(forcibly as part of the project party from our company) 😦

    and I still dont understand what the hype was all about..

  14. 20 Renu September 25, 2010 at 10:42 am

    First review which is negative, so far I have read everybody praising only:)

  15. 21 amreekandesi September 26, 2010 at 10:01 pm

    Yea…i’ve yet to watch the movie. People say it’s good timepass 🙂

  16. 22 liju philip September 27, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    It was a good timepass movie. much better than Wanted. I loved the subtle comedy in the movie.

    And Salman, as usual looked constipated. Perhaps he is born with that expression on his face. Cant help it.

  17. 23 Jahanpanah September 28, 2010 at 1:39 am

    Just read the first paragraph and found that you are also one of those who don’t know what dabang means and that exactly gives me an opinion about you i.e. from where you are coming. So yea I take it if you don’t get the milieu of the film right (and I don’t need to read the whole review to get it). People keep needlessly keep saying it means fearless. However, you are right here by saying that one who cannot be suppressed but more apt word is Bully or Domineer.

  18. 24 milojee September 29, 2010 at 2:35 pm

    LOL… Gotta see this flick. Sounds like an uproar. 🙂

  19. 25 chandan October 1, 2010 at 3:30 pm

    right about all exept msuic one rest of the songs were also nice you must b joking………………

  20. 26 Ashish Sapkal October 5, 2010 at 12:22 am

    Haahahha…Excellent review.

    The movie is actually a disaster. But this is bollywood where ‘faaltu entertainment’ has much more importance than good scripts.
    Agar Om Shanti Om and Main hoon na can be a hit, why can’t Dabangg..

  21. 27 Kiran October 6, 2010 at 9:34 pm

    Welcome back Poonam 🙂

    Excellent review. What’s wrong with Bollywood these days? Churning out lousy movies? I’ve read many bad reviews of movies this year. This is not good especially since I am craving for a good movie 😀

  22. 28 Harsh October 18, 2010 at 2:23 pm

    Loved the review … and loved the movie as well ..

    As long as you keep your reasoning and brain out of the theater … you are bound to enjoy the movie .. 😉

  23. 29 probate property comparison January 5, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    Really clear web site , appreciate it for this post.


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