Dabangg 2 Movie Review By Taran Adarsh

Rating: 4

The job of a promo is to send out accurate pointers to its target audience. The gist of the premise, the essence of what the characters will be, an extract of the milieu… one needs to furnish a general idea of what to expect when the spectator saunters into the cineplex to watch the film. Arbaaz Khan and Abhinav Singh Kashyap had a tough responsibility on their shoulders when they embarked upon DABANGG. As luck would have it, DABANGG was hailed as one of the best entertainers of that year, with Chulbul Pandey becoming a household name. The film consolidated Salman as the darling of the masses, a position he enjoys to this date.

With DABANGG 2, one is well prepared about what to expect. The sole factor that Arbaaz needs to worry about is whether DABANGG 2 would meet the towering and monumental expectations. More so, because Salman Khan is contending with himself. He seems to be raising the bar [in terms of business] with each film. WANTED, DABANGG, READY, BODYGUARD, EK THA TIGER… Salman has redefined superstardom with mass entertainers. He’s Boxoffice’s fav child and seems invincible and insurmountable at the moment!

With DABANGG 2, you know exactly what to expect. But you don’t know its premise till the reels unfold. Let me add, the plot is an extension of the first installment of the franchise. The route is very similar except that the antagonist is more influential and authoritative.

DABANGG 2 is a typical Bollywood film. It’s the kind of cinema we relished in the 1980s and enjoy to this date, but narrated in today’s lingo and format. It may/may not make sense to you, but Arbaaz and team ensure that you are entertained. Thoroughly entertained, actually. It’s riotous, outrageous, wacky, ambitious, absolutely madcap, transports you to an altogether different world. Add to it a sprinkling of desi songs, wicked sense of humor, with Chulbul Pandey taking on the antagonist like the vintage hero would — with fearlessness and daredevilry. Actually, Chulbul Pandey has come to represent the common man and that’s yet another reason why you root for him, feel overjoyed and ecstatic when he triumphs in the finale.

For those who adore masala movies, celebrate mainstream cinema, relish the cinema of yore and of course, hero-worship Salman Khan, DABANGG 2 is your ticket this festive season.

DABANGG 2 begins with Chulbul Pandey moving to Kanpur. Once there, Chulbul gets into conflict with Baccha Bhaiyya [Prakash Raj]. Baccha Bhaiyya, a criminal turned politician, is aided by his two brothers, Chunni [Nikitin Dheer] and Gainda [Deepak Dobriyal]. Things take a turn for worse when Chulbul kills Gainda. the battle lines are drawn…

Like I pointed out at the outset, DABANGG 2 is a hardcore masala entertainer that’s desi at heart. The plot is *not* out of the box [it’s the usual good versus evil saga], but it’s completely irrelevant here. What camouflages this deficiency are several interesting episodes that Arbaaz and writer Dilip Shukla have integrated in those 2 + hours. These episodes, aimed at pleasing the hoi polloi and of course, Salman’s die-hard fans and also fans of mainstream cinema, are, to put in filmi lingo, absolutely paisa vasool. In fact, Salman’s star power is so so so strong that you’re ready to overlook and forgive-and-forget any blemish that you may encounter in the movie.

Yes, there are blemishes. The Arbaaz-Mahie Gill track is half-baked. The confrontation scenes between Salman and Prakash Raj lack fiery dialogue. The songs, though popular, are integrated in the narrative without any valid situations. But these are cinematic licenses you overlook in a Salman movie.

Arbaaz Khan, who makes his directorial debut with this film, knows his fundas right. He may have borrowed from the cinema of 1970s and 1980s, but he garnishes it well enough to suit the present-day sensibilities. Sajid-Wajid take the same route they undertook while making the soundtrack of DABANGG. Much like the content of the film, the songs are desi, with a mix of old-world charm [‘Dagabaaz Re’ and ‘Saanson Ne’] and foot-tapping numbers [‘Pandeji Seeti’ and ‘Fevicol’]. In fact, ‘Fevicol’ is already a rage and Kareena’s presence in the song only acts as sone pe suhaaga. The action/stunts do complete justice to Salman’s persona. The action plays a crucial role in a masala entertainer and adds so much power to those scenes. Dialogue are of mixed variety.

Salman uses his fists, escapes the bullets, spews venom and threats, bullies the villain, flirts and romances his wife, does the pelvic thrusts… in fact, he does everything that one expects from Chulbul Pandey. Oh yes, he even takes off his shirt, flexing his muscles and showing his well sculptured torso without inhibitions, a mandatory requirement in a Salman Khan movie. Honestly speaking, DABANGG 2 is a Salman Khan vehicle and the actor is the Big Boss here. You cannot imagine anyone else doing what he does. And every time he plays to the gallery, many in the audience [especially at single screens] are sure to fling the loose change on screen as a mark of appreciation for his on-screen antics. He defies logic and gets away with it!

Sonakshi has the infectious charm and radiates confidence all through the enterprise. Arbaaz is just about okay. Mahie Gill has nothing to do. Vinod Khanna is passable.

Prakash Raj is in terrific form yet again. The supremely talented actor is ferocious when the need arises. Nikitin Dheer has good screen presence and does well. Deepak Dobriyal gets better scenes and is hugely competent.

On the whole, DABANGG 2 has Salman Khan, Salman Khan and Salman Khan + Entertainment, Entertainment and Entertainment in large doses. The film has the masala to work big time with the masses. This one will rewrite the rules of the game and the festive occasion [Christmas and New Year] will aid its potential. Sure shot Blockbuster!


  1. sputnik 9 years ago

    Raja Sen’s Rediff Review

    Salman Khan has become the new Dharmendra [ Images ].

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m not blaspheming for effect. When I say ‘the new Dharmendra,’ I don’t mean the fine actor from Satyakam or Chupke Chupke, or even the ridiculously charming hero from Sholay [ Images ].

    I mean the guy Dharam turned into later, when he became incorrigibly obsessed with canine blood.

    And that isn’t necessarily a bad thing at all, given how fondly we look at even latter-day Dharam Paaji. It’s good to know what to expect.

    The assembly line star-vehicles in Bollywood today are now nearly impossible to tell apart, and you could splice together a supercut from, say, Singham, Rowdy Rathore and Salman’s latest, and the storytelling narrative would merge seamlessly.

    It’s evident these movies aren’t about anything but the person starring in them, and all that matters are punches and punchlines, both sadly unmemorable.

    Thing is, other actors play ridiculous, dated, larger-than-life characters. Salman, on the other hand, plays himself — or at least a bizarre (or less bizarre?) screen version of himself. This is where the Dharmendra parallel kicks in. Khan’s own persona, massaged by record-shattering blockbusters and his uniquely unapologetic lifestyle, is now larger than any character can be. And that, in itself, makes this film halfway entertaining.

    For a fan of the star in question, all that matters is whether the star seems to be having fun. In which case Dabanng 2 is just the ticket, since Salman looks to be having the time of his life. The film itself is better than the original — or, to word it differently, is less unwatchable.

    And yet it has absolutely nothing new to offer, and nothing to remember, quote or take away from the theatre. The language in the dialogues is quite excellent, though: by which I mean the Hindi used in the UP-based film, and not the actual lines.

    Things begin with a Kanpur kidnapping, and since Khan’s Aviator-collaring Chulbul Pandey lives there now, short work is briskly made of the kidnappers. The drill is remarkably unoriginal: a bigger bad guy shows up, Khan toys and teases him till the evil one snaps and hurts actors whose names we know, and thus we have a vendetta.

    Somewhere in the middle, naturally, Salman’s sister-in-law shows up to boogie, and (thankfully) on an unrelated note, his shirt eventually comes off. End film.

    But Salman, thank heavens — unlike any of the characters written for these — is a goof. And that means his Chulbul Pandey giggles, sobs, prank calls his father, has an automatic pelvis-jiggling belt buckle, and plays volleyball with crooks. There are times, of course, where he looks far too old for the part.

    He’s an embarrassment when dancing, and his torso is so oddly proportioned that his solid colour shirts look like they’re inflated; there is a fair bit of hot air, to be sure. But all things considered, he wears the expressions unashamedly enough to make them work.

    His heroine is, like in the first film, Sonakshi Sinha [ Images ], who spends most of this film pouting. It is an unwise choice for a face that has become astonishingly round; the dupatta framing it fits her like the rim of an egg-cup. She still cannot act, not that it seemed ever a requirement.

    This film marks the directorial debut of Arbaaz Khan [ Images ], who will doubtless pat himself on the back for making more crores than the more mediocre original, and why not: his motives appear clear, and as an actor, he’s actually surprisingly likeable as Pandey’s simpleton brother.

    His wife Malaika appears briefly and looks significantly more captivating than Kareena Kapoor [ Images ], though the latter has a frustratingly catchy song. Inane, but catchy. Something about glue and bottoms, I believe.

    Super actor Deepak Dobriyal, shows up here in an uninteresting role he may have done for the leather jacket he gets to wear, but really, by now after Omkara, he should know better than to mess with the whole carrying-bride-from-altar situation.
    Never ends well for the guy. Prakash Raj [ Images ] is the main villain, and he’s always good — it’s just that, unfortunately for us, he always gets to play the exact same baddie in Hindi cinema.

    And he’s never even allowed to lord it over the hero in case we start thinking less of our star. Tsk.

    Which means the infallible Chulbul Pandey — after a movie riddled with painfully unsubtle product placement and odd public-service style dialogues made to convince villagers that women can get jobs — climactically gets to beat up an ageing politician.

    And that’s no battle compared to Khan keeping a straight face through very obviously (and atrociously) computer-generated shirtlessness, the first moments of which just happen to be the film’s funniest.

    Oh, and there is one decent line — one referring to Chulbul as Kung Fu Panday — but, quite like the time we spend watching this film, it’s a throwaway.

    Rediff Rating: 2.5 stars


    • Author
      aryan 9 years ago

      Sukanya Verma’s Review
      Dabangg 2 looks all too familiar

      Apun public hai, public. Kisi ko bhi kuch bhi bol sakta hai. Jismein apna paisa vasool nahi uska dabba gul.

      Munna’s argument in Rangeela [ Images ] is both practical and effective. And it’s in the honest presence of these collective Munnas and Milis that you truly discover (and enjoy) the epic accomplishments of characters like Chulbul Pandey.

      That he is played by another influential Khan, Salman, known for his undeniable and indescribable hold on this very ‘public’ only adds to the distinction. And so his current slew of films (offering a varying degree of masala between avoidable and amusing) are best enjoyed with their real source of fun — the audience.

      And, believe me Pandeyji, Tiwarji and Chaubeyji, this writer had a blast watching Dabangg on Eid 2010 at a theatre packed to its capacity by a noisy, rambunctious crowd. Yes, the dippy escapades of a self-styled Laalgunj cop with a penchant for flatulence-themed threats and Rajnikanth-inspired sunglasses pleased me enough for it to find a spot among my favourite films of that year.

      Click here!

      This morning too, when he re-introduces himself (by leaping out of a jeep bursting out of a wall amidst a slo-mo shower of fibre-glass shards), figmental wolf-whistles escaped me involuntarily. Fisticuffs with a Gapoo to rescue a Papoo lead to a comic interlude featuring a familiar goon with a ringing mobile. Wanted’s Jalwa makes way for Ready’s Dhinka Chika to underscore the uninterrupted box office might of this franchise’s mainstay. It’s time for the opening credits to roll and recap the events preceding the sequel.

      In the tradition of the first one’s quick-footed action, Dabangg 2 also maintains a breathless pace wherein Salman takes a break from wisecracking around his entourage of well-meaning, equally witty sycophants to transform into an unstoppable Hulk (with AND without shirt) to swirl the baddie like a bat that’s just hit a century only to dent it across a dusty car, grunt like he’s crunched a shelled walnut, shove an SUV like a puny sidekick, smash a man’s neck like Raat’s possessed Revathy, break into a Hud Hud Dabangg on Kanpur’s bustling Birhana Road, shields himself from a bullet onslaught with a hapless refrigerator and socks that all-familiar punch into jaws that then quiver like deflated balloons.

      Did I say familiar? That’s the trouble with Dabangg 2. Within 15 minutes, the novelty wears off. Our one-man Expendable has already done this and better in the previous installment of the franchise. And as much as he tries there are only so many ways a man can play himself.

      When Salman Khan [ Images ] first portrayed Chulbul Pandey, everything was refreshing about him — the moustache, the mannerisms, and a new brand of masculinity that giggles, jiggles and takes a joke.

      Moreover, even for a standard potboiler involving revenge and over-the-top heroics, Dabangg did have a cohesive plot and clarity in the manner Chulbul was written — his strained relationships with his stepfather, half-brother, his whimsical romance with a drunkard’s pottery-passionate daughter, his wry humour that worked both as a defense and offense mechanism depending on whom it was directed at and a mercurial temperament that fits Salman’s personality like a glove while giving his co-actors something substantial to work with.

      Arbaaz Khan [ Images ], who turns director with this film, embraces the task of taking Chulbul Pandey’s saga ahead from where Abhinav Kashyap left off. He does well when it comes to preserving a super popular character’s appeal but plays frustratingly safe by refusing to try anything different or inspiring.

      Besides shifting from Laalgung to Kanpur and planting a new (read stale) villain — the rowdy Bachcha (played by Prakash Raj [ Images ], forget his performance, I am genuinely concerned about eyeballs falling off at the rate he keeps dilating his pupils) with the same old back story — high political connections and two equally vile brothers Chunni (Nikitin Dheer in a performance that makes you wonder what glares more? His purple brocade kurta or that permanent scowl on his face) and Gainda (Deepak Dobriyal [ Images ] as the only menacing element about this flick) creating havoc in the industrial town best loved for its leather and ladoos — Khan leaves Bade Bhaiya to save the day and film.

      The latter tries, valiantly no doubt, and holds it together even as you pass those breezy 129 minutes in the hope of something unexpected, something cooler, something to attest that bang with an extra g in its title.

      Even the sultry appearances put in by Kareena Kapoor [ Images ] and Malaika Arora [ Images ] Khan bop about the same old template and ambiance in flashy chart-toppers.

      Speaking of songs, it’s the only time Sonakshi Sinha [ Images ], who made her debut with the first film in the series, shows up wearing ugly clothes and a sour expression that makes even more sense considering her role’s length.

      Ditto for Arbaaz Khan, the erstwhile troublemaker Makkhi is designated to dimwit Makkhi disappearing for long spells, presumably behind the camera, while Salman holds the fort in front.

      Dabangg 2 serves primarily as a reminder of what this Rs 100 crore addiction is doing to the art of entertainment. Entertainment, not filmmaking, mind you. Even escapism deserves to be treated with boundless imagination.

      And so I’ll take Salman Khan stopping a moving tram with nothing but a blazer over the same old Matrix-era maneuvers. Now THAT was quite a kamaal, Pandeyji.

      Ratings: 2 and a Half.


  2. Ritz 9 years ago

    Deepak Dobriyal and Prakash Raj are very talented people.

    Sad to see them taking such projects.

    • sputnik 9 years ago

      They both are talented but Deepak Dobriyal gets only sidekick roles. Even his role in Omkara was of that a sidekick. The only role that was interesting/different was the 13B one.

      Prakash Raj takes every project that comes his way. You should see his Telugu movies – he is there in almost every movie. He usually does the same roles and hams in quite a few of them.

      Have you seen Mani Ratnam’s Iruvar? He was excellent in that.

      • Ritz 9 years ago

        Havent seen Iruvar fully..that was long long back and in parts. Dont remember much.

        But yes, he hams. I saw many of his Tamil roles.

        Deepak shined even in side role in Omkara. I havent seen D6 but ppl tell me he had a good role therein.

        • Ritz 9 years ago

          I guess even in Hindi film industry almost all do this compromise. Om Puri and Nasiruddin have done it.

          There are few exceptions like Pankaj Kapur who are have been very selective about roles.

          Btw I loved Pankaj’s role in Halla Bol very much. Whats your opinion about it?

          • sputnik 9 years ago

            “There are few exceptions like Pankaj Kapur who are have been very selective about roles.”


            I did not like Halla Bol and I did not like Pankaj’s role either.

  3. Ritz 9 years ago

    I think this one sums it aptly:

    Aniruddha Guha review: Dabangg 2: Wannabe-Dabangg


  4. Ritz 9 years ago


    I would like to know more about what you didnt like about Pankaj Kapur in Halla Bol. I know movie was a mish-mash and over-ambitious and I didnt like it. But then I somehow think that Pankaj was very convincing in whatever he did on screen.

    • sputnik 9 years ago

      I saw it when it released so don’t remember in detail. I think the movie should have stuck to the part of a Bollywood star witnessing a murder and not doing anything at first and the guilty conscience part. I did not like the whole street theater part and found Pankaj’s character very Prakash Jhaish.

      • Ritz 9 years ago

        On the contrary, I liked his part and whole street play thing.

        But I understand you POV of “the movie should have stuck to the part of a Bollywood star witnessing a murder and not doing anything at first and the guilty conscience part”

        But that would have been a different take on things.

        I didnt like many dialogues and scnes in the film ..especially between Ajay and the Politician. (ajay pissing on his carpet etc …and some such scenes) But as far as Pankaj angle goes – I in fact think it adds to the depth of the film – the bringing up/background of hero…

        • sputnik 9 years ago

          Now that you mentioned the pissing scene I don’t like scenes like these that Rajkumar Santoshi adds to get some whistles/shouts from front benchers.

          The bringing up/background of hero part is fine and Pankaj meeting him and causing him to reexamine himself is fine but then the superstar again doing street theater and all that was a bit too much.

  5. sputnik 9 years ago

    Komal Nahta’s Review

    “On the whole, Dabangg 2 is, without doubt, a blockbuster. It may be routine and may have its flaws but, overall, it entertains wonderfully. Most importantly, it has more than enough masala for the millions of Salman Khan fans. Salman Khan car­ries the entire film on his shoulders.

    Opening was extraordinary at most of the places, and at many places in the North, it was so in spite of the cold weather. Opening in small centres of U.P. was, however, not upto the mark.”


    • Ritz 9 years ago

      oh, so its not a ‘poetry on screen’ ?!?


    • Reddemon 9 years ago

      Haha. Komal taran and even BOI is pumping D2 like fanatics. Every tweets of taran about D2 consists of humogenous, mountainous, historic blah blah…:-P

  6. Ritz 9 years ago

    “in spite of the cold weather”

    Wtf with those lines Komal?

    You sound like a 80s journalist. And a caricature Om Puri played in “King of Bollywood”

  7. Baba Ji 9 years ago

    saw komals review of dabang 2 on tv. He says fevicol song dance steps are “brilliant” 😉
    also says action is “high poin”t of dabang 2 but at the same time says its OTT and unrealistic and then he said “waise bhi salman ho,to koi logic,gravity mein kahan dhyaan deta hai”.

    to dhyaan kis cheez mein dete hain ❓

  8. mate 9 years ago

    They retweet tweets of Salman fanatics. LOL How desperate they are, frustrated souls. hahaha
    These are the journalists who motivate 3rd class film-makers to make craps like Dabanggs/ Bodyguards/ Rathores in the name of mindless masala.

  9. hello 9 years ago

    Instead of going orgasmic BOI should post some circuit numbers why not tell us how it opened in Mumbai or Delhi or Banglore etc why only Noida ? Since they think Dabangg2 can even do as much as ETT on its opening day how about some comparision of ETT and D2 numbers.

  10. Baba Ji 9 years ago

    A point i hv always made about the south indian movie villians reduced to comic reliefs. mumbai mirror critic mentions the same:

    ” how long will Prakash Raj’s incredible run as a Bollywood baddie continue? (It’s incredible because his only strength is in his ability to hire a large number of goons who will be smashed by the hero before eventually he’s finished off without putting up a shadow of resistance.) ”


    • Baba Ji 9 years ago

      In indian films especially down south, villian role is reduced to comedy so that in no way he can possibly overshadow or even start a debate that the villian may have been better.Here is one of those films where the villian makes the bigger impact. undisputed 3 . i loved him more than the hero! superstylish, badass mean looking and great attitude.

  11. sputnik 9 years ago

    Review by Pratim D. Gupta


    The first five minutes have flown by. His jeep’s broken through brick walls. His kicks have sent a few flying. And fatak! The frame freezes over. “Salman Khan as Chulbul Pandey”. The entire theatre orgasms. And noisily at that. This is not cinema as we know it. It’s a carnival out there; playing at a theatre near you.

    Yes, Dabangg 2 is like a party celebrating the popularity and success of Dabangg. And that’s not entirely a bad thing. When you go back to a restaurant, you try a couple of new dishes sure but if it’s Peter Cat, you will have Chelo Kebab.

    Taking over the directorial reins from Abhinav Kashyap, producer Arbaaz Khan keeps Chelo Kebab, and only Chelo Kebab, on the festival menu.

    So you are served that promised plate with all the components. There’s the sunglass on the back collar, the squirmy jubilation jig, the ceetee-seducing dialoguebaazi, the desert romantic song, the branded item number…. Almost like a film made out of the outtakes of the first Dabangg.

    But what part two lacks and lacks aplenty is the simmering sense of urgency, the niggling hint of tension, which gave the 2010 blockbuster its edge. Dabangg 2 is way too feel-good for its own good. Father’s a friend, brother’s an ally, wife isn’t playing games, Pandeyji is really vacationing in Kanpur.

    The villain who does crop up, Bachcha Singh (Prakash Raaj), is more funny than ferocious and not a patch on the bloodthirsty Chhedi Singh. And just because it’s true for a Bond film, why should it not apply to Chulbul — the better the baddie, the better the film.

    There’s a palpable desperation to arrive at the next high point, which is either another song or another action set-piece. Whenever there’s an effort to develop a plot or have some banter, Dabangg 2 hits a dull patch. But if just his belt can juggle the audience into hysteria, you can trust the man to get the groove back at will.

    In the middle of all the Rs 100-200 crore tamasha, no one’s talking about the fact that in his almost 25-year career, this is Salman Khan’s first official sequel. Official because you can accuse him of having played the same character in many films.

    But Chulbul Pandey aka Robin Hood Pandey and now Kung Fu Pandey(!) is such a distinct character designed by Abhinav Kashyap that to reprise it, even Salman has to be un-Salman at times.

    He has so much fun being Pandeyji — and you can see that it in his face, in his eyes — that you cannot help but join the party. Watch him go up on stage and go berserk to Kaise bani phulauri bina chutney and then try and imagine any other superstar in the country even trying to pull that off.

    And then when it comes to the big emotional scene, Salman doesn’t look away. He cries, then stops, thinking a Chulbul Pandey shouldn’t be crying, and then breaks down again. It may not be the greatest showcase of histrionics, but a whole lot of honesty. In close-up.

    Like in the first film, Salman shares some of the best moments of Dabangg 2 with Sonakshi. She’s a softer Rajjo, more playful than aggressive. Vinod Khanna as the father is suddenly turned into the comic subplot, which is quite a downer actually. Deepak Dobriyal as the villain’s brother is the best dushtu lok of the lot. Munni makes an appearance but it is Bebo who gets the big ‘sticky’ item number, which as a result looks like a leftover song from Heroine. Pandeyji is a lot more fun while Dagabaaz re is clearly the pick of the lot. But why would Sajid-Wajid use preludes and hooklines of famous songs like Chalat musafir moh liya re and Main zindagi ka saath nibhaata chala gaya as interludes here is bit of a mystery.

    A friend of mine in Mumbai got herself a Dabangg 2 ticket in Chandan cinema hall. “Salman Khan films can only be enjoyed in a single-screen theatre!” She was underestimating the power of Chulbul Pandey. Go watch the man turn multiplex into maachaa, popcorn into pakoda and keep you chipkaoed to your seats…faavicol se.


  12. Baba Ji 9 years ago

    another pertinent point:

    “Let’s copy Dabangg. Let’s also cast Salman Khan in it and call it Ready, Bodyguard, Ek Tha Tiger. Can’t get Salman? Okay, let’s cast Ajay Devgn or Akshay Kumar and title it Singham, Son of Sardaar, Rowdy Rathore, or Khiladi 786.”

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