I had huge expectations. But they started dying when the movie with a less than required quotient of suspense started becoming a rat race. But then the second half came as the pleasant surprise that I was expecting for at the time of intermission, and I got at least something for my expectations.
Teen Patti is a new story. It has Amitabh Bachchan. It could be an Aankhen had it been that well scripted and directed and acted too. But then, it didn’t become that good, mostly because of the direction. The story of Teen Patti starts okay, but then the movie becomes a mediocre affair as the mathematics professor and his students start dealing with people like Mahesh Dagdu Manjarekar and Tinu Billu Anand, no offences to the actors. At the time, the characters of the movie are kind of lost and one doesn’t understand what exactly they want from their lives as well as from each other. Probably the director has her own ideas about what the characters want which she fails to make clear to the viewer.
But then, in the second half the movie moves ahead and we get to see some great performances, especially from Amitabh, who makes a perfect mathematician in the movie. There are some good dialogs too, one of Ajay Devgn about ‘better luck next time’ being my favorite. Talking of performances, all the students of Amitabh, who are majorly new faces, have given quite good performances, in the limits of story and direction.
The major drawbacks of Teen Patti are, the writing, that makes the movie go up & down, and with the exception of Amitabh, and to some extent Madhavan, you do not get a clear picture of anyone’s mind; and the direction, that falters so badly at some points that I wonder if there are some Priyadarshan scenes lined up ahead. Adding the two, you get that the movie is not smooth as it should have been. But the person who makes up for it all, not all the times though, is the one and only Amitabh Bachchan. The end of the movie, especially the part where it all comes to Amitabh and Ben Kinsley, is definitely the best part of the movie.
By the way, I count on Amitabh as the mathematician and would not comment on the logic or way they use to earn money in the movie. Whether that is something beyond logic and practicality is not under the perview of the review.
Talking about other things, music is mostly made for the movie and works in its place. But then, you go home with a Neeyat that is definitely kharab. Salim-Sulaiman’s background is good too. Choreography shows its color in Neeyat again. Cinematography is interesting with all the effects added to numbers though it reminded me of Taare Zameen Par’s beginning scenes.
Overall, Teen Patti is a could-be-good, average movie. The reason I say average may be my high expectations from the film but a cast of Amitabh and Ben Kingsley does deserve that attention. Still, both Amitabh and even Ben in his small role deliver good performances. Watch it if you want something new and are not afraid of getting bored in search of that new.