Saturday, May 25, 2024

Is Rohit Shetty’s Cop Universe a Big Joke?

Priyanka Bhattacharya (Sub Editor)

Renowned for his action-packed, epic blockbusters, Rohit Shetty is arguably one of the most well-known directors in the economics of Indian cinema. It’s vital to recall that, despite his huge stature and ardent supporters, there is sometimes no or little relevant connection whatsoever between his works of art, if we talk about his so-called “cop universe”.

A Closer Look at Disorganized Scenes in Shetty’s Films

This impression is mostly due to the constant dependence on extravagant action scenes and overblown stunts that violate the rules of physics. While watching a movie typically requires suspending disbelief, Shetty’s action sequences frequently go beyond this point and even verge on the ridiculous. Vehicles taking to the air, heroes escaping hopeless situations unscathed, and villains carrying out ridiculous acts of destruction all contribute to a sense of cinematic absurdity. This might leave viewers wondering whether they are witnessing a parody of an action movie.

In the “Singham” film series, there was indeed a notable change in the lead actress between the first and second productions. While Ajay Devgn continued to play the role of Bajirao Singham, the female lead changed from Kajal Aggarwal in the first film to Kareena Kapoor Khan in the sequel. This transition occurred without a narrative or logical connection between the two characters.

Shetty’s character development is frequently neglected in favour of drama, making an emotional stake in the narrative challenging for spectators. The overuse of slapstick humour combined with erratic tone changes between comedy, melodrama, and action scenes might confuse viewers into thinking they are viewing a disorganised collection of unrelated scenes rather than a cohesive story. Cultural stereotypes are occasionally employed for humorous effect, which can be insulting and inappropriate, and female characters are frequently reduced to simple objects of desire. The films may come out as out of touch with the changing tastes of contemporary viewers due to their reliance on antiquated cliches.

Rohit Shetty’s Movies Have No Connection to One: A Retrospective

“Singham” and “Sooryavanshi” are both part of Rohit Shetty’s popular cop universe, but beyond the occasional cameo appearances of characters, there is no significant narrative connection between the two films. Although Singham makes a brief appearance in Sooryavanshi, there is no additional connection between the films. The cameo lacks a clear and meaningful rationale and serves as a nod to Shetty’s signature style of demonstrating mindless direction. It’s quite amusing that Ajay Devgn and Ranveer Singh decided to grace Rohit Shetty’s cinematic circus with their presence in “Sooryavanshi.” The actresses play relatively undefined roles in the aforementioned films. The female characters in both films are often relegated to the sidelines, with limited character development and the primary focus of these films is the adrenaline-pumping action, and the camaraderie among the male police officers.

Shetty, known for his contempt of cinematic excess, has carved a niche for himself in the realm of mindless entertainment. His films may indeed share common themes like humor, suspense, and music, but the real joke here is the absence of any discernible storyline or character development. Shetty seems to operate on the belief that audiences don’t need their brains to enjoy a movie, and he’s right in that regard. You can enter a Shetty film at any point without prior knowledge because there’s nothing substantial to follow. This detachment from depth and complexity is, in fact, a blissful escape for fans who have an appetite for brainless entertainment. Shetty’s work is the cinematic equivalent of fast food – it might taste good at the moment, but it’s devoid of any nutritional value or artistic merit.

In stark contrast to directors who painstakingly craft intricate, multi-film narratives, Rohit Shetty’s approach can best be described as a colossal joke. His films lack any semblance of a unifying story, instead opting for a disjointed mishmash of distinctive protagonists, rivalries, and visual spectacles. Each of his movies seems to exist in its own isolated universe, leaving the concept of a unified cinematic world in the realm of pure fantasy. Cameos in Shetty’s films merely serve as a whimsical nod; there’s no evident connection between the characters, events, or even a semblance of logical storytelling, but what truly connects them is their collective contribution to the vast, bewildering joke that is Rohit Shetty’s cinematic universe.

Copying an Idea from Hollywood: Nothing New in Bollywood

It’s truly comical how ideas in the film industry can evolve and take shape in response to trends and outcomes. Take, for instance, the notion of creating cinematic universes, a concept that gained prominence in Hollywood. However, when Bollywood dipped its toes into the cinematic universe pool, it wasn’t exactly a masterstroke. Enter Rohit Shetty, a director who has a knack for turning the simplest of ideas into an overblown spectacle, and Ajay Devgn, who somehow managed to make the word “Singham” synonymous with action-packed mediocrity.

“Singham,” unleashed upon unsuspecting audiences in 2011, was nothing more than a hyperbolic parade of relentless fight scenes and Devgn’s portrayal of a police officer that can only be described as a joke. The film’s box office success seemingly indicated that Indian audiences have a peculiar fondness for this type of cinematic silliness. Naturally, when Hollywood sneezes, Bollywood catches a cold, and the idea of a cinematic universe is no exception.

And so, the “Rohit Shetty Cop Universe” was born, an audacious attempt to mimic Hollywood’s success with the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Shetty threw together characters like Simmba and Sooryavanshi, combining them with larger-than-life police officers like Singham. This cinematic endeavour left no room for doubt that Bollywood was shamelessly copying Hollywood, albeit in its own tacky, action-centric way. So, kudos to Shetty for turning a trend into a joke that’s almost as entertaining as his films.

The Ultimate Hero vs Villain Showdown: Where the Hero Wins in the End

Rohit Shetty keeps recycling the same tired themes in his films: retaliation, family honour, and love. While these subjects might be significant in the cultural context, the plot and character development in his films are about as inventive as a brick wall. Instead of crafting nuanced, multifaceted characters and intricate plots, Shetty seems content to shovel in the same tired ingredients: item songs, action scenes, and melodrama, all of which take precedence over anything resembling depth or originality.

The predictability of Shetty’s films is another punchline waiting to be delivered. It’s as if he’s stuck in a time loop, endlessly replaying the hero vs. villain showdown. The hero, often portrayed by Ajay Devgn or similar actors, is depicted as an indestructible, larger-than-life figure who obliterates every obstacle and foe in his path. The characters themselves are cardboard cutouts, relying on clichéd personas that do little to inspire or captivate the audience. Shetty’s stories are about as deep as a puddle, only scratching the surface of moral ambiguity while casting the villain as a one-dimensional embodiment of evil, devoid of any subtlety, and the hero as a paragon of unwavering justice. It’s as if Shetty took a masterclass in filmmaking from a comic book, and the joke’s on anyone who expects more from his formulaic, shallow productions.

While the Cop Universe has found commercial success, it’s not without its critics, who yearn for more original and thought-provoking storytelling in the realm of Bollywood cinema.

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