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The con’s on you!


Tees Maar Khan

Rating: 2

December 24, 2010

Cast: Akshay Kumar, Katrina Kaif, Akshaye Khanna, Arya Babbar, Apara Mehta

Director: Farah Khan

Director Farah Khan will stop at nothing to get a laugh out of you. No disability is too sensitive to make a joke of, and no stereotype too overused to flog one last time.

In a scene from her new film Tees Maar Khan, a dark-skinned thief nicknamed Ismail Koyla who only commits robberies in the night, is finally arrested when his shining teeth give away his hiding spot. In another scene in which a movie is being cast, a toothless villager presumably suffering from leucoderma is selected to play a British officer because he has white skin. A pair of conjoined twins only speak in unison and repeatedly hi-five each other. And three effeminate village boys forever dressed in pink assist a heroine with her make-up, and roll their eyes longingly at a hunky filmmaker.

If you’re outraged by such low-brow humor, Tees Maar Khan is going to be a long, hard slog for you.

Adapted from After the Fox, a 1966 comedy starring Peter Sellers, this film stars Akshay Kumar as Tabrez Mirza Khan or Tees Maar Khan, a master criminal who learnt to steal even before he was born, because his mother was addicted to classic Bollywood crime films while she was pregnant with him. When Tees Maar Khan is hired by the notorious Johri Brothers to rob a train stuffed with roughly 5,000 crore rupees worth of antiques, he pretends to be a Hollywood filmmaker named Manoj Day Ramalan, and under the guise of shooting a period film, enlists an entire unsuspecting village to help him with the heist.

Despite several staggeringly silly set pieces – including a sequence in an airplane in which Tees Maar Khan escapes from the clutches of two police officers – the film’s first hour races by briskly thanks to breakneck pacing, and at least two energetically choreographed dance numbers. But by the time you’ve settled into your seat post intermission, the screenplay begins to come apart. There’s a particularly awkward gag involving a headless horseman, and that leads to a supposedly poignant moment in the film that is entirely contrived. Even the train heist sequence isn’t filmed dramatically enough, and the Manoj Kumar tribute at this point seems forced and overstretched.

Tees Maar Khan, surprisingly, doesn’t match up to the standards set by Farah Khan with her previously directed films. Both Main Hoon Na and Om Shanti Om were smarter, funnier films that benefitted from the writer-director’s irreverent humour. But for this film she hands over the writing responsibilities to Shirish and Ashmit Kunder who appear to have drained the film of any smartness. The dialogues are repetitive, and the jokes in Tees Maar Khan are mostly puerile and not very funny at all. In fact, it’s an arrogantly written script that seems to take the audience for granted.

However, it’s a testament to Farah Khan’s directing skills that she makes even this disappointing film work on at least a few occasions. She draws out a winning performance from Akshaye Khanna as the Oscar-hungry filmstar Aatish Kapoor, who’s still hurting from having lost a role in Slumdog Millionaire on account of his foolish secretary. Despite the incessant hamming, Khanna easily emerges this film’s best joke. Katrina Kaif, in a smaller role, as Tees Maar Khan’s struggling actress girlfriend, submits herself completely to the silliness of her character, and at least succeeds in evoking a smile out of you.

In the choreography department, there are few who can rival Farah Khan. The Sheela ki jawaani number is one of the film’s early highlights, a sight to behold not only for the dance movements but for the complete staging of the production – the music, the costumes, the lighting, and the editing. The Wallah wallah set piece too, featuring Akshay Kumar and Salman Khan, has an infectious energy that is indisputable.

Even if you go in willing to suspend your disbelief, Tees Maar Khan is not an easy film to enjoy. Akshay Kumar works very hard to make the buffoonery look like fun, but he’s saddled with such poor material, it’s no surprise it doesn’t work.

I’m going with two out of five for director Farah Khan’s Tees Maar Khan. Working with Akshay Kumar for the first time, it’s surprising she delivered not the trademark Farah Khan entertainer one expected from her, but a typical harebrained Akshay Kumar comedy instead.

(This review first aired on CNN-IBN)

62 Responses to “The con’s on you!”

  1. Mujeeb says:

    Thanks Rajeev for saving me watch the disaster..

  2. Chaitanya Jagtap says:

    Title should be ‘Cheekh Maar khan’ instead of ‘Tees Maar Khan’ becoz everyone in movie shouts as hard as they can. Waste of time n money. Not a single joke make you to laugh geniunly. Boring n bakwas movie.

  3. Malvika says:

    The movie absolutely drains you. How can a director under-estimate the audience to such an extent? The clichéd humor just gets on your nerves. Absolute waste of money and precious time.The Shiela song and Akshay Khanna are perhaps the only factors which save the movie some grace.

  4. Ashwin says:

    I just returned home watching this POS. I feel violated. I am sobbing. Not because I lost Rs220 per ticket. But because I feel violated. Farah Khan technically raped me. Sob

  5. pavan says:

    May however good or bad the movie is, why the hell is twitter used as promotional activity. Otherwise these directors and actors never RT…

  6. Kunal says:

    Oh Akshay! When will you ever learn! Sigh!!
    After ruining his career he’s on a collision course to ruin the film makers’ and producers as well. Good Going Bhatia Ji, khud toh doobenge lekin poori industry ko bhi saath le doobenegy.

  7. Kunal says:

    @pavan That’s right. She has given more hits in last five years than Ajay has in his entire career!

  8. Kunal says:

    @pavan Sorry my reply was to ami in the other section!

  9. Praful Hudgikar says:

    I think you got some attachment with the director… 2stars Come on Rajeev Sir… u dunno, the film deserves 1/5 that to for katrina’s Sheila dance… The film is just waste of money for the audience and to the entire team of TMK. Pure
    Overacting. I liked the end part of the movie which made me laugh.. which was their honesty.. “They give awards to themselves at the end of the movie” which they know they never gona receive them in any award function… A “GET WELL SOON” to the entire team of TMK.. I hope they don’t torture audience again.. ..

  10. nithin says:

    if farah wanted to make a song she should have made a music album. I dont understand why ppl waste money for no reason. Idiotic film ever negative rated movie I srsly don’t understand y rajeev has given 2 for a movie full of crap.

  11. Kalamirani says:

    The way Farah n Kunder promoting on twitter by retweeting, r they expecting oscar for this joke as BHARAT KA KHAJANA got oscar in the film?

  12. danish singh says:

    all ur muvie reviews r crap …u dun like 95 prcent muvies !! ur rating nevr exceed 3 fr a hindi film…i feel u critics hv becum tooo Bored of watchin films as a proffession !! go dre n wtch films as an audience may b u like dem !

  13. danish singh says:

    though akshay kumar needs to be bashed up publically fr makin such wtch shit since 2008 !

  14. Prashant says:

    Worst mooovie ever seen,even more worst than kajrare

  15. Chidrup says:

    One of the worst movie i hv ever seen in my life :X .. dnt understand why rajeev gave it two star..dis movie dsnt deserve even a half star..the only good thing was d title track in d start of movie…

  16. Sneha says:

    Go for Tees Maar Khan. Ignore all the negative comments you’ve been hearing about. It’s great unpretentious fun. To actually put so many IQ-challenged characters into an intelligent piece of comedy couldn’t be easy.

  17. Rahul Mishra says:

    Sir aap ko to movie dekhne hi nhi aati aap ye kaam chod kar koi dusra job dekhiye

  18. swagat says:

    the movie was literally an ‘insult’ on the audience. The movie was basically a t.v. ad endorsing products and with a complete show of over-confidence. Farah has now crossed barriers insulting the entire film fraternity and the true spirit of movie-making!

  19. bikram says:

    farah khan is a complete waste of all time. doesnt at all knws hw 2 make muvs.

  20. SK says:

    You rate very good films like Raavan (Err… it really is very good cinema if you manage to ignore Abhishek’s hamming) and Guzaarish 1.5 and a tragedy like Tees Maar Khan 2 stars?

  21. sajid says:

    Absolutely taking audience for granted,poor content n rich promotion,all social platforms including twitter best utilised,one can understand if a good attempt fails but selfish intentions need to be shown the doors !

  22. harry says:

    SRK is king…its proved again and again…without him FARAH is zero…actually SRK rejected this script…and poor FARAH was over confident and signd akshay….BIGGEST MISTAKE.

  23. Ranganath says:

    hw did u even give it 2 stars… its nt worth even one… give half for the song….

  24. Manu Gaurang says:

    I think bhatia ji(akki) needs to go back working as a bawarchi… make way fr grn next Uncle! Promos wont bring audience to theatres just as laloo’s nonsense failed to get him elected.. ppl r smart nowadays!!
    will wait fr the movie to be on TV by republic day atleast 😀 thnx Masand fr ur unbiased reporting

  25. pratik says:

    yaar,har waqt OM SHANTI OM sa luck nahi hota k kuchh bhi banao aur film hit karva lo..train lutna bas yehi story..lot of screaming, grimacing and heaving. sab bakwas..bundal…

  26. Dear Rajeev !

    This is very much expected from you.. Anyways your sincere reviews are saving lakhs of people all over India from watching Disasters like this. Thanks a lot.
    Its high time people stick on to what they know than experiment & create mediocre stuffs. Farah should stop direction & do choreography. OSM was a decent grosser just coz of 3 elements,1) Sabu Cyril 2) SRK 3) Deepika ..

    I would suggest you review South Indian movies too as there are hundreds of excellent flicks releasing every year. Especially in Malayalam & Tamil.. Pls start doing that too Rajeev apart from Holly & Bolly..

    Vignesh Krishnan

  27. Akshay Rane says:

    I agree Rajeev Ji… The movie sucks big time… Akshay Kumar se hit expect karna aur Farah Khan se SRK ke bina blockbuster expect karna dono bekar hain

  28. vinay says:

    i think this movie deserves negative rating…….

  29. Tarun pak says:

    Yes sir am totally agree with u. I went 2 see d movei and cme after 30mins it was waste of time and money.

  30. GIRISH says:

    farah baby stop making films…….or go back to SRK…..aur haan your film only has little bit from every director nothing new or innovative

  31. ramesh says:

    why 2 stars? seriously? WHY? tees maar khan nahi hai ye….. audience ko maardiya ye tees maar khan. Bakwaas movie. As someone rightly said, i felt i was made stupid by farah and co.

  32. Ruis says:

    I just don’t understand 1 thing. If Guzaarish got 1.5 stars, how come this movie got 2 stars?????? It doesn’t even deserve a proper 1 star. May be you were too harsh on Guzaarish…

  33. rohan says:

    thanks man but looking at trailer and director it was bound to be a disaster

  34. Ayaz says:

    uff… Movie wont deserve 1/2 star… very pathetic movie……….

  35. Ayaz says:

    I m surprised rajeev giving 2 stars… I tht you will throw an egg like wat u did for RGV ki aag… It deserves 2 egss

  36. Jatin Chadha says:

    @Pavan 100% Agree with u – I never see them ReTwitting as much they r doing with those +ve rivews.

    And some mean dogs are purposely writing good abt. the movie, just to get their name on Akky’s ReTweet -WHAT A SHAME!

    Regarding the movie – Super Duper BORE Movie.
    Story & Dialogues are so so so Outrageous.
    Omar Qureshi (from Zoom) has given TMK 2.5 Stars which I believe is due to courtesy of friendship with Akky & Farah or else it’s completely overrated ranking to this pathetic cinema.

  37. Shadab says:

    @Rahul, Please have a taste man,

    @SK, If you liked Guzarish, in that case you aint’ve seen the Sea inside, a class movie brutally raped by bhansali, Brutally because I never be able to compare guzarish with that Masterpiece,

    One more thing, Masand you rock man, you don’t deal with the other movie critics being payed to review good to thier movies, specially “Times of India” to be listed

  38. rameez says:

    i think the rating of dis movie shud b not more dan 1….if its farah khan,karan johar o shahrukh khan ua ratings starts from 2o 2.5 no matter hw bad d muvee is…….:(

  39. sharon says:

    i actually respect your views a lot…but seriously 2 stars for this load of crap…its only bcz farah is a bigshot of the industry…the movie deserves 1 star…half for sheila ki jawani and half for akshaye khanna…btw if akshaye khanna was a spoof on SRK then remove that half star as well {yes i am an ardent SRK fan}…OSO worked bcz inspite of the unreal plot there was an engaging act to it…TMK has nothing for it…i was actually comtemplating walking out of the theatre in that ghost scene!!!
    the movie sux bigtime…i want my money back!!!

  40. Palak says:


    I think now directors has lost their taste…. Yesterday i was looking for your comments , but i didnt got it on the net…

    so I had to go to see that stupid movie… What a waste of money….

    The director of this movie should now join some classes / sessions to learn how to make movies.

  41. sharuk says:

    im happy that srk dint do this movie. so smart don. akshay please stop doing movies like this. and farah u r ok na?

  42. kapil shivarkar says:

    I think farah khan is one of the worst filmmakers in India. I respect your opinion and reviews but shame on you for praising farah khan as a director.

  43. Debeesantosh says:

    Farah Khan’s ill respect to our Tiranga..
    Watched Tees Maar Khaan..
    Farah Khan’s bloodiest ill respect to India Tri-color in the song “Bade-Dilawala”..

    The moment Sukhwinder sings “Tirange ko sambhala”… Akshay Khanna shows off a tricolor flag having color Red,white and Blue..
    whatta a shameless and insensible production unit..
    Atleast show respect to our tricolor.

  44. Rahul Sengupta says:

    It was an idiotic movie yet it was super FUN watching it!
    Watched it in a single screen theater, where tickets cost less, instead of pricey multiplexes. So, have nothing to complain!! Cheers for TSK!! 😀

  45. Wasim says:

    Shirish Kunder worst story line & Farha Khan bad direction makes the move boring & horrible. Few scenes were jus an adaptation of her last movie Om Shanti Om.. SRK ke saath PANKGA le na asar abhi Farha Khan will realize.. Thumbs down to Farha Khan.

    Katrina’s Sheela ki jawani is worth a watch. Akshay Sir !! You are an amazing actor with lots of talent but pls stop doing movie like this and degrade yourself.

  46. dipanjan dey says:

    thanks rajeev.the time i watched the trailer,i immediately knew this movie will be a disaster.i am very critical of movies.my friends told me to come with them but i instead bought tickets to a bengali art film playing here about two gay filmmakers,AArekti Premer galpo(just another love story).i am seeing tron legacy today.hope it will be good.

  47. Payal says:

    This is definitely one of the worst films I have ever watched…U r being too liberal in giving it two stars..deserves only half…

  48. Dushyant says:

    Thank a lot Rajeev..TMK is another Akshays comedy flick…

  49. hukum chand says:

    this movie is a totally crap. I liked farah’s earlier work so I went on to see this crap but it turned a loot by farah khan . how can a director be so insensible towards audience. I felt cheated by farah and akshay. it is now a crime to watch akshay kumar’s movie.

  50. SJ says:

    The movie deserves 2 stars all right, 2 stars in it’s a**
    I was this close to shooting myself, good I wasn’t carrying a gun
    Rajeev sir, I respect ur reviews a lot… Plz don’t do this again!!

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