Abbas-Mustan the director duo who have given us thrilling hits like ‘Humraaz’, ‘Ajnabee’ and ‘Race’ have come up with ‘Players’ which is an official remake of the 2003 Hollywood action film, The Italian Job. Players is a notch below the high ‘thrilling’ standards created by them.
The film Players, shot in locations in the Goa, United Kingdom, Wellington and Auckland in New Zealand and Siberia, St Petersburg in the Russian Federation has some never-before-seen action sequences directed by Allan Amin.
What is missing in the film is proper characterization of its players. Half baked characters, average songs and mediocre acting are the drawbacks. About its plus points, it has good cinematography and editing, fine action sequences and it is a stylish film.
This time around, it’s not just going to be the men (Abhisheik Bachchan, Bobby Deol, Neil Nitin Mukesh) who do action stunts, because the women (Sonam Kappor and Bipasha Basu) too are part of the show and display their action skills too.
Charlie (Abhishek Bachchan) and Riya (Bipasha Basu) are co-thieves who indulge in thefts of classic items like a valuable painting or a high prized necklace. Raj (Aftab Shivdasani), a friend of Charlie is killed by the Russian mafia. Raj has left a CD for Charlie which contains the secret of the hidden gold worth Rupees 10,000 crores. This gold belonged to the Romanian government, was in Russia till date, and now this gold will be transported back to Romania in a heavily guarded train.
Charlie contacts his mentor Victor Dada (Vinod Khanna) who provides the world’s best thieves who specialize in their niche skills. There is a world’s best hacker Spider (Neil Nitin Mukesh), an explosives expert Bilal (Sikander Kher), a make-up expert who specializes in creating masks – Sunny Mehra (Omi Vaidya), a magician who is an expert is creating illusions – Ronnie (Bobby Deol) and then finally Riya (Bipasha Basu) who is a talented engineer who creates special boosters which increase the speed of old locomotives.
After carrying out extensive research it is the team leader Charlie who plans out the heist. Apart from leading the gang he is also a voice modulator. With precision and split second timings, the heist is carried out successfully and now it is time for them to celebrate in the snowy landscapes of Russia.
It is now that Spider double crosses all the other players and flees away with the whole truck load of gold.
This is till mid way. Post interval, the team groups together and set out to find the traitor. This time they are supported by Naina (Sonam Kapoor) who helps them as she is out to avenge her father’s death.
They land up in New Zealand and trace out Spider who now resides in a heavily guarded palatial mansion. This group also garners support from a local garage owner and an automobile expert – Budh Chopra (Johny Lever).
About the performances in Players, it is Bobby Deol as the magician and Johny Lever who appears genuine and provides some comic relief. Omi Vaidya is tiring as he delivers hindi dialogues in his typical accent. The sizzling Bipasha Basu is unconvincing as the automobile expert. Vinod Khanna as Victor dada has trouble delivering his dialogues. Abhishek Bachchan appears in a hurry to finish off the shooting.
Cast of Players:
Abhishek Bachchan – Charlie Mascarenhas
Bobby Deol – Ronnie
Bipasha Basu – Riya
Sonam Kapoor – Naina Braganza
Neil Nitin Mukesh – Spider
Sikander Kher – Bilal Bashir
Omi Vaidya – Sunny Mehra
Johnny Lever – Mangal Chopra / Budh Chopra
Vinod Khanna – Victor ‘Dada’ Braganza
Aftab Shivdasani – Raj
Shweta Bhardwaj – Shayla
Vyacheslav Razbegaev – Russian Army chief
Credits & Crew of Players:
Produced by Studio 18
Directed by Abbas Mustan
Screenplay by Rohit Jugraj, Sudip Sharma
Background Music – Sandeep Shirodkar
Choreographers – Bosco Martis, Caesar Gonsalves, Raju Khan
Costume Designer – Anahita Shroff Adajania
Co-Producers – Mohammed Burmawala, Pappu Vaswani
Music Director – Pritam Chakraborty
Lyricist – Ashish Pandit
Editor – Hussain Burmawala
Cinematography – Ravi Yadav
Action – Allan Amin
Dialogue – Rohit Jugraj, Sudip Sharma
Sound – Rakesh Ranjan
Players – movie review