Rating: 1-1/2 stars
Groups of dancers in Remo D’Souza’s Street Dancer 3D keep demanding something new, but the director serves up a film that is same old… without even the pretence of a plot.
Set in London, the film has two rival gangs – Indian and Pakistani, would you guess!—who run riot all over the streets, and congregate at Anna’s (Prabhudeva) to dance, watch cricket and have food fights. Their aim is to win a contest called Ground Zero—Sahej (Varun Dhawan) because his brother (Punit Pathak) was injured during a dance-off, and Inayat (Shraddha Kapoor) because the prize money would help desperate illegal immigrants go home. Anna invokes history, physics and even moral science to get the two teams to unite, but they just glower at each other.
Sahej joins his girlfriend (Nora Fatehi) and her white group, even it means breaking up his loyal gang. He has also done something unethical to fund his dance studio, and his actions lead to guilt and an about turn at the end. The contest seems to have no rules if dancers can switch sides at will, change from hip-hop to bhangra, from western music to drumbeats and Hindi lyrics, just like that! Without any rehearsal, everybody knows the steps and dances in perfect sync!
There is nothing but dancers showing off through most of the film’s running time—and sadly, the dancing looks mechanical and graceless, though a lot of hard work must have gone into the training, rehearsing and choreography. Then, Prabhudeva does a Muqabala throwback number, and makes all the leaping-twisting-twerking youngsters look like amateurs.
To show that the film has something to say, there is a forced, weepy human trafficking track that wastes the acting talent of Aparshakti Khurana. Varun Dhawan and Shraddha Kapoor have done much better work in the past, so it is strange to find them not just doing this film (the third in the ABCD series) but talking about it as a mainstream achievement. Makes you wonder sometimes if their quotes are ghost written.