Another remake bites the dust

by Tejas Nair

2015 has been a terrible year for Hindi cinema. The official remake of the hit Gavin O’Connor film Warrior (2011), Brothers is a solid example to prove that the previous statement is, in fact, true.

An alcoholic martial arts trainer (Shroff) accidentally commits a crime that sees his whole family fall apart, giving rise to a rivalry between his two sons, which is irreverently taken inside a wrestling ring. The revelation that one of the two sons was born out of wedlock was the cause of the rift, which remains a point of contention throughout the whole story. Now all grown up, David (Kumar), the elder son, is battling for better pay as a high school teacher, moonlighting as a fighter to pay for his critically ill daughter’s medical bills. Monty (Malhotra), an alcoholic and chip off the old block, is still not over his decades-long familial issues and does specifically nothing for a living. In an international mixed martial arts championship that blooms out of nowhere, David and Monty fight it out through the tough line-up to end up in a one-on-one finale.

Directed by
Karan Malhotra
Akshay Kumar, Jackie Shroff, Sidharth Malhotra
Release Date
14 August 2015
Tejas’ Grade: D

I could disclose more about the film and no one could accuse me of giving away too many spoilers, because the title itself blurts it out loud what and how the film’s climax is going to roll out. There is a lot of melodrama before things actually start to make sense, and by the time it culminates with a predictable ending, one wonders what the film was really about. Was it about the rivalry? Was it about the blood relation? Was it about fooling the audience? What takes place inside the ring is literally unbelievable, and while most films in this genre try to wrap it up sooner, this one here has the whole second act dedicated to it. Although the production design is greatly supportive, the fights happen back-to-back, where these so-called supermen flex few muscles and show like they toil harder than Chilean miners by eventually winning. And they want us to believe that. Argh! Not happening.

Shroff’s performance is fine but is too loud for his dull character. Malhotra looks confused and seems to be thinking about why he chose the project. Kumar looks hungover from playing the notorious vigilante in his previous Bollywood potboiler Gabbar is Back (2015).

The Bottom Line: Brothers is a lightly engaging family drama with the sport a seemingly random addition. One to avoid.