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  • Kites
    • Kites
    • Runtime:127 min
    • Release Date:2017-01-22 09:06:12
    • Director: Anurag Basu
    • Genres: Action, Romance, Thriller
    • Studio:


"Kites" is a bravely attempted film well worth watching for many unique
elements. The occasionally mystifying failures of "Kites" fascinate, as
much as its often noteworthy achievements.

I wanted to like this film … .

The casting was good and performances excellent. The endlessly gifted
Hrithik Roshan is, simply, the best actor of his generation. The mature
and even compelling performance he delivers here as a grey character
lifts "Kites" to another level. The Mexican costar I'd never heard of
before, Barbara Mori, was alright. Kangana Ranaut was even better, as
the rather sweet rich girl Mr Roshan's character targets to exploit.
Kabir Bedi, as the girl's father whose casino ownership covers mob
activities, was very good and could usefully have been given more story
in better balance with Nicholas Brown, the brother who served as chief
baddie. Special recognition is due Yuri Suri (general Bairam Khan to Mr
Roshan's emperor, from "Jodhaa Akbar") for an outstanding performance
in a small but critical role as the mobster family's chauffeur.

Unfortunately the story – and direction – fail the performances.

To understand why "Kites" disappointed at the box office, look no
further than the weak ending. After two hours bonding with a film's
protagonists and following their troubles an audience expects and has
even earned some emotional payoff at the end. Whether positive or
negative, the tone of the outcome should mesh with the overall tone of
the story. But "Kites" in a sense cheats its audience: its set-up does
not justify this particular end.

The multiplicity of languages doesn't help. Subtitled English or Hindi
dialogue is one thing, but when they start throwing in Spanish, too …
the resulting babel was confusing enough even for someone like me who's
used to reading subtitles. What Indian audiences, many of them native
speakers of languages other than Hindi perhaps, might have made of this
three-language mess I can only imagine.

I am not impressed by Anurag Basu's direction. So many of this film's
basic story and communication problems could have been fixed simply by
unfolding the story strictly from one point-of-view: Jay Ray (Mr
Roshan), the central character, so that the audience understands – and
where necessary, misunderstands – everything from that one perspective.
But when Mr Basu repeatedly has Jay understanding one thing and the
audience, through misleading subtitles, something else altogether, the
story spins out of control and loses focus.

There ARE some truly brilliant moments here. The shadow puppet
sequence. The yellow van scene. The champagne-on-the-rooftop 'divorce'.
The whole '3 months earlier' sequence introducing Jay's life in Las
Vegas – performance, editing, cinematography, musical score – is
fantastically effective to establish the character and set tone and
mood, climaxing in the mindblowingly powerful 'Fire' – gods, can that
man dance! – which leaves the audience totally primed to follow this
character anywhere. But Mr Basu's direction is not able to sustain that
same energy as the story progresses.

I believe Mr Basu's greatest single failure, however, is not convincing
us how, why, or even if Jay and Linda love each other. This is fatal,
since the whole plot turns on it. When Mr Basu leaves his audience
wondering if their love is only situational (i.e.,
we're-in-this-together-because-people-are-trying-to-kill-us), it
undercuts the whole story. Despite the director's repeated and very
visual emphasis on the physical perfection of his two stars – bare
chest and bikini shots abound – he does not, for instance, have them
react to or even much notice each other's character's physicality. And
under Mr Basu's hand the misunderstandings and miscommunications
between the two central characters, even when quite remarkably funny,
come through much more strongly for the audience than anything seeming
to draw the purported lovers together. What kind of 'love story' is it,
if an audience reasonably has cause to doubt whether the couple could
be happy together even if they do get together?

Still, a bold and intriguing experiment, well worth watching.

In Hollywood this story might have been pitched as "Saturday Night
Fever" meets "Thelma and Louise" with narrative structure from "The
Hangover". And it ALMOST works.

The production values – cinematography, sound, musical score, visual
design – of "Kites" are uniformly excellent. The action sequences are
well-mounted, even expensively mounted. The outstanding, complex, and
challenging performance by Mr Roshan is almost, by itself, enough to
raise the film beyond the limitations of Mr Basu's flawed direction.

There are great pieces within "Kites" … even if those pieces do not,
in the end, fit together as the same puzzle.


Boy; after so many disheartening feedbacks from my friends; I actually
enjoyed the movie. Hrithik; truly is the most charismatic actor of
India. Barbara Mori's acting; her expressions; her smiles all are
fabulous. She was great in the movie. I like the background scores and
songs are also good. The best segment of the movie was about the
dilemma of the protagonists and their snapping out of it. How two
people could be entwined; purely due to feelings; traversing region,
language; be it their destiny; is beautifully portrayed. Although; I
didn't like the ending, but it is believable; as it is not necessary
that things ought to end happily. Also, Hrithik's dance, at the movie's
preamble is great; as all of us are aware of this talent of his.
Surely, the movie doesn't tell a completely unique or 'not seen/heard
before' kind of love story; but the direction, great acting and the
composing elements like scenes, landscapes, cinematography and music
does make it worth watching for a great experience, when you are
completely free and in a blue/romantic mood. Great Movie; 10/10.


*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This movie gets four stars, which it deserves. One point for the
interesting and vibrant locations, one point for the songs and
background music, one for the action scenes, and one for Hrithik

The introduction of the story is the usual, as you would expect. Set in
America, Jay (Hrithik Roshan) is here to make some money, but fails
each time he tries. Enter Gina (Kangana Ranaut) who says she loves him,
but he turns her down. What he doesn't know is that shes one of the
richest people in the city. Stunned at his luck, he goes back and asks
her to be his dance partner for the upcoming competition. She agrees,
and they become closer.

Now, when Gina's dad meets Jay, he asks him to attend his son Tony's
engagement, and that is where the story makes some progress. He meets
his wife that he married for green card.. Natasha (Barbara Mori) or
known as Linda.

From there on, its pretty much predictable. The love, the action ,
everything looks as if its straight out of a Hollywoood movie. Barbara
Mori does pretty well, Hrithik Roshan acts well but is just alright,
though his dance moves are impressive. Kangana Ranaut is a huge

The PROBLEM with this movie is not the story, but with the way the
story is portrayed on screen. If they focused on one thing rather than
three, the movie would have worked. There are three main conflicts.
Gina and Jay, Tony and Natasha, and of course, their love story.

If only one of these was focused on, it might have worked. The ending,
is also pathetic. You think to yourself "what the hell is going on" As
after you walk out of the movie theater, you realize that ending made
no sense at all.

Worth watching once.


*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I never watched this movie in theater reason being the negatives
reviews this movie got specially from Indian audience……but i
gathered the courage and saw it last week and boy am i
surprised…….the movie is nothing like what the reviews say rather
it never felt like i am watching a crappy and nonetheless an idiotic
spicy Indian movie like for e.g this years hit "houseful"…………i
enjoyed the movie throughout and specially was impressed by the lead
pairs acting talents i.e,Hrithik and Barbara…….i am aware of the
fact that Hrithik used to suffer from stammering disorder but after
lots of struggling and self control and determination he overcame his
disability………..but i was not convinced as to his English speaking
but when i saw this movie ,i dint felt like it was a theater like
acting …it looked natural…….and what a find Barbara Mori is
!!!….i am sure she will do good in global cinemas.

Now coming to the plot…well to be honest it does not entertain
anything which is new….the plot is as predictable as in any typical
love story………..but that is not the concern here, the main
emphasize is on the presentation…..the way it was presented, it
totally outclassed any regular Bollywood short love stories.. but i am
disappointed as Hrithik dancing is not used as to his par….the dance
competition was poorly edited and the camera angles were all
wrong……i was expecting a venture like it was done in "Step Up"
franchisee…..but all in all it is a good watch.

As far as Indian audience is concerned ………it was predictable from
the fact like good pictures such as "Swades" and "lakshya" failed to
set a mark on box office then a movie like "Kites" certainly cant be a
blockbuster keeping this fact in mind.

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