‘TIGER 3’ REVIEW | 12 November, 2023

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Yash Raj Films’ Tiger 3 (UA) is the third film in the Tiger franchise. As in Ek Tha Tiger and Tiger Zinda Hai, Avinash alias Tiger (Salman Khan) works as a secret service agent for RAW. He is married to erstwhile Pakistani ISI agent Zoya Nazar (Katrina Kaif) and the two have a son. Tiger follows instructions and rescues Gopi (Ranvir Shorey) who, while dying, tells him of the sinister plan of the Pakistanis, which would adversely affect India. The news disturbs Tiger a great deal because there’s a personal angle to it. Anyway, the next thing which Tiger does is to go to Pakistan where he meets Aatish Rehman (Emraan Hashmi), an ex-agent of Pakistan’s ISI. Incidentally, Aatish was trained under Zoya’s father, and he, in turn, had trained young Zoya (Gurket Kaur). In Pakistan, Tiger realises that Aatish is not in favour of the Pakistani Prime Minister’s (Simran) peace proposal to India. Aatish and like-minded people in Pakistan are keen to overthrow/kill their PM and introduce dictatorship in their country in place of democracy.

As the son-in-law of Pakistan, Tiger takes it upon himself to save the Pakistani PM. He is aided in his mission by Zoya, and three RAW agents — Rakeshji (Kumud Mishra), Karan (Anand Vidhaat) and Nikhil (Chandrachoor Rai). Some others also join forces with Tiger. But is Tiger able to accomplish his mission?

Aditya Chopra has written a story which talks of peace between India and Pakistan. It is likely that many among the audience may not take too kindly to this angle as the climate in the country currently is anti-Pakistan. Also, since Shridhar Raghavan’s screenplay devotes almost the entire second half to Tiger trying to help maintain the image of the Pakistani PM and safeguard her life, there are hardly any patriotic sentiments for the Indian audience. Frankly, there is almost no scene in which the Indian viewer’s chest can swell with pride or he can feel inspired to do something noble for his country. Had the screenplay writer shown some scenes expressing the noble feelings for India in the Pakistani Prime Minister’s heart, the audience would’ve at least felt empathy for her peace proposal. Without that, many among the viewers would not feel any empathy for her and, therefore, for what Tiger does for her (Pakistani PM). Since the drama is mostly about an Indian secret service agent’s concern for the Pakistani PM, there are almost no patriotic emotions which are aroused in the audience. If there is no patriotic fervour in the drama, there aren’t any family emotions either — and this, in spite of the fact that Tiger has a wife and a son. Light and humorous moments are few and far between. Yes, there are breathtaking scenes like Tiger’s theft of the suitcase from the locker, his escape from Pakistan, etc. But their impact is greatly diluted because the subject is not half as appealing as it should’ve been. The first half is fair. Although the second half is better and more fast-paced, the point of Tiger helping the Pakistani PM keeps disturbing the audience, thereby reducing the impact of the drama. Anckur Chaudhry’s dialogues are punch-packed at a few places only, but not consistently so.

Salman Khan looks handsome and acts well, scoring in action scenes. He plays Tiger with the right attitude. Katrina Kaif is good in the role of Zoya. Emraan Hashmi performs ably as Aatish Rehman. Besides these three actors, the other actors don’t have standout roles, which is another minus point. Simran does a fair job as the Pakistani Prime Minister. Kumud Mishra makes his presence felt as Rakeshji in spite of not having a substantive role. Anand Vidhaat leaves a mark as Karan but, again, he does not stand out. Ranvir Shorey is good as Gopi. Chandrachoor Rai is alright as Nikhil. Vishal Jethwa has his moments as Hassan. Ridhi Dogra is natural as Shaheen. Shahid Lateef acts ably as Gen. Haq. Revathy is quite nice as Maithili Menon. Shah Rukh Khan makes a special appearance as Pathaan. Although his track is exciting, it is not as exciting as Salman Khan’s special appearance in Pathaan. This is being mentioned as comparisons are bound to be made between the two special appearances in the two films. Danish Husain (as DG Riaz), Danish Bhat (as Javed), Gavie Chahal (as Abrar), Gurket Kaur (as young Zoya), Aamir Bashir (as Rehaan Nazar), Sartaaj Kakkar (as Junior), Edward Sonnenblick (as Dr. Hoffman), Neeraj Purohit (as Jibran), Bimal Oberoi (as Gen. Ribiero), Michelle Lee (as Gen. Zimou), Veervarinder Singh Ghuman (as Shakeel), Anish Kuruvilla (as the Indian Prime Minister), Syed Zafar Ali (as Imtiyaz Qureshi) and the others lend average support. Hrithik Roshan’s special appearance in the end to introduce War 2 adds star value. Of course, his appearance is not part of Tiger 3 although it is part of YRF’s Spy Universe.

Maneesh Sharma’s direction is average. He has not been able to evoke the emotions one would expect in a drama of this kind. Pritam’s music is very good. The ‘Ruaan’ song (penned by Irshad Kamil) is beautifully rendered and is very appealing. The ‘Le ke Prabhu ka naam’ song (written by Amitabh Bhattacharya) is mass-appealing. Song picturisations (by Vaibhavi Merchant) are eye-filling. Tanuj Tiku’s background music is excellent. Anay Om Goswamy’s cinematography is topnotch. Action and stunt scenes (choreographed by Franz Spilhaus, Oh Sea Young and Sunil Rodrigues) are thrilling. Mayur Sharma’s production designing is of a good standard. Rameshwar S. Bhagat’s editing is sharp.

On the whole, Tiger 3 lacks in merits and has a story which may not find great acceptance, but its business will be far, far more than the merits. This is because of the immense popularity of the Tiger franchise, the presence of the very hot and happening Salman Khan in the lead role, the Yash Raj Films banner and, last but not the least, the release of the film in the festival period. But to expect that the film will match the business of Jawan or Gadar 2 or Pathaan would be foolhardiness. Collections on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday would be outstanding, and this trend will continue in Gujarat-Saurashtra for two additional days.

Released on 12-11-’23 at Inox (daily 17 shows) and other cinemas of Bombay by Yash Raj Film Distributors. Publicity: excellent. Opening: very good in spite of the Laxmi Pooja festivities. (Traditionally, footfalls in cinemas are lower on the Laxmi Pooja day as many Hindus are busy with the festivities.) …….Also released all over. Opening was very good at places and fair at others. Attendance at single-screen cinemas was better than in multiplexes.