Don: The Chase Begins Again

The trailer for Don 2 is out and I was impressed enough by it to check out the earlier Don: The Chase Begins Again. Directed by Farhan Akhtar, it is based on the original Don starring Amitabh Bachchan. I had not seen that movie either, though I was familiar with the song Khaike Pan Banaraswala.

The movie is built around two rival gangsters Singhania and Vardhan who are into drug smuggling. No one has ever seen the face of Vardhan, but the cops know that Singhania uses Don (Shahrukh Khan), an infamous gangster working from Malaysia to get his work done. Cop D’Silva is hot on the heels of capturing Don, when he is injured in an accident. D’Silva uses this situation to inject a look-alike of Don named Vijay to infiltrate the drug network. Vijay successfully embeds himself into the gang and with his help D’Silva starts to kill off gangsters. All is not what it seems when Vijay and D’Silva start discovering each other’s identities.

For a Bollywood thriller, the story of (the original) Don is quite intriguing. Farhan Akhtar’s Don is shot completely in Malaysia and looks great. Playing the panache of Don is easy work for SRK. Boman Irani plays his role effortlessly, surprising the viewer with his twist. Priyanka Chopra and Isha Koppikar are mostly wasted in their roles. Don features songs from the original movie in addition to some new ones. The only song that really hooked me was Aaj Ki Raat, which I had loved on the soundtrack of Slumdog Millionaire. This one is a real earworm! Don has everything going for it, but fails miserably in its length and pace. 3 hours is too long for a 2006 Bollywood movie and the lethargic pace adds to the torture. If Farhan can edit this down to a tight 2 hour movie, Don will be an entertaining watch.

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