Movie: Players

Directors: Abbas-Mastan

Cast: Abhishek Bachchan, Sonam Kapoor, Neil Nitin Mukesh, Bipasha Basu, Bobby Deol, Omi Vaidya, Vinod Khanna, Shikander Kher, Johnny Lever

Jagran Rating: Average

Storyline: They say birds of the same feather flock together: Charlie Mascarenhas (Abhishek Bachchan) and Riya (Bipasha Basu) are partners in conning and daredevil robbery.

As a last gift, Charlie's friend Raj (Aftab Shivdasani) reveals through a CD the possibility of a heist. "Ten thousand crore rupees worth of gold would be transported from Russia to Romania."

Raj warns Charlie that this robbery, an unlikely feat, is not a one man job. He would need a team to execute it and the only person who can help him put up the team is ace thief Victor Braganza (Vinod Khanna).

Victor assembles the players - Riya, an expert machinist, Bilal Bashir (Sikander Kher), an explosive expert who likes foreign cars, Ronny (Bobby Deol), a magician and Sunny Mehra (Omi Vaidya), a make-up artist. Naturally, the captain of this team is Charlie Mascarenhas and their goal - The Gold.

In today's age, with the complexity of the internet, the team lacked a hacker. Victor's daughter Naina (Sonam Kapoor) unsuspectingly offers help by suggesting ace hacker, Spider (Nitin Neil Mukesh), to the team.

In the show of one-upmanship, what follows the heist is a game of con and deceit at every moment of the film. For humour, there is MC (Johnny Lever) and his family.

Thumbs Up:  Sleekly made with fine action, crisp razor sharp edits, speeding cars and exciting photography giving you glimpses of scenic Siberia, Amsterdam and New Zealand, the film reminds you of a Bond film. In certain scenes, Sonam reminds of Simi Garewal.

The leggy babes with leotard and boots, the guys with stubble and leather jackets, the palatial villas, the elongated limousines, the long car chases, the robbery on the train - everything looks glossy and out of this world.

Technically, Abbas Mastan have churned out a very fine movie. The racy background score by Sandeep Shirodkar and the soundtrack by Pritam creates the adrenaline required for a thriller.

Thumbs Down: Unfortunately the well-intended choreographed numbers breaks the momentum. The film delivers without any emotions. It is evident that the actors have not put their soul to the characters; they have just walked through their roles. And it shows. The glycerine and the pancake take the applause.

Vinod Khanna, Neil Nitin Mukesh and Abhishek's performances lack energy. Omi and Johnny Lever are stereotyped with their comic dialogue delivery. Bipasha has nothing new to offer and Bobby Deol is wasted in the minuscule role.

‘Players’ is a synthetically made formula thriller. It does not touch you emotionally. But a good watch nevertheless.

(Agencies)

(*Bad,**Disappointing,***Average ,****Good,*****Excellent)