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Aquaman Is Baahubali Ki Soggy Bahen

Subhash K . Jha

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Aquaman

Starring Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Nicole Kidman

Directed  by James Wan

Rating: **(2 stars)

 Somewhere  deep in the recesses of this action-piqued satire-adventure  about the  exiled  king of  a  banished underwater  kingdom,   I  realized the plot is a straight tilt of the tiera to two  classic Hindi films Deewaar and Baahubali

Two brothers Arthur and  Orm  hate each other’s guts while Mama Dearest, played by the super-gorgeous Nicole  Kidman, tries hard  not  to box both the  brats in their ears.Wish she had.

That Orm, the legitimate  but villainous  son  is played by an actor Patrick Wilson  far  superior  than Jason Momoa who plays  the  hero,  makes the sibling conflict look distinctly disembodied.That Mama Nicole Kidman prefers  the  illegit  to the legit shouldn’t shock those of us who have seen Raj Khosla’s Main Tulsi Tere Aangan  Ki.

Like Nutan  the  mother  torn between her  two sons  in  Khosla’s film,   Nicole  Kidmandoes  the biting  of  the  lips and the clenching  of the jaws most impressively.She is one reason to keep the faith alive  in this  woefully  emptied-out homage to  comicbook heroism where much of  the action happens  underwater  lending to the narrative  a soggy shifty unctuous feel  of a Baahubali on  uppers. It’s like the baby held up  in Baahubali hadaccidently dropped  in  the waters  and arrived at some hideously misgoverned water  kingdom.

Part  of the reason   for the film’s  feel of an awful  hangover  after a  party that has gone on way too long, is the leading man.Jason Momoa  plays Arthur the  exiled  king of thewaterkingdom with a  befuddled  machismo, the kind displayed by wrestlers  at the WWFwho have been paid to fight  but have forgotten whether they are meant  to win or loose.

Through most  of  the film Momoa looks like he could do with a helping  hand in crossing swords and knives with his enemies who  pop up in  droves  for expertly-staged choreographed  fight scenes.The trishul plays an  important part in the fights.Lord Shiva would sue if he weren’t so tolerant  of man’s stupidity.

In his effort to divert his karma  of  cluelessness Arthur gets  help from a red-haired  vixenMera(amber Heard). Very often  I found my mind wandering to Mera’s bright-red hair. How  did she  keep the  dye  alive when she spent  most  of  the  time underwater? I didn’t quite follow  how  the  underwater thing  worked.  There was a smartly-designed kingdom  underwater and they all breathed easily without  a glug plug , while the script writers huffed and puffed  and blew the ‘hose’ down.

 Staying underwater too long numbs your senses. This  is what I gathered watching this moronic manual to  aqueous immortality.

Watching actors  like Nicole Kidman and Willem Defoe (the latter playing the  loyal sword trainer Katiyappa from Baahubali) squander  their talent in this drippy drivel  is  not my idea  of an evening well spent.

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