Thugs of Hindostan may have opened to big numbers, but the film has largely been panned by critics and certain members of the audience, for its poor screenplay and lack of originality. The expectations were also higher because superstars Aamir Khan and Amitabh Bachchan were coming together for the first time. While we wait and see how the film performs at the box-office, here’s a look at the other times Bollywood has disappointed us on Diwali.
1. Action Replayy (2010)
The Akshay Kumar–Aishwarya Rai starrer not only bombed at the box office but also got the wrath of audiences who spent their hard-earned money to see the film. Directed by Vipul Shah (who recently directed Namaste England) the film was about a sad teenager (Aditya Roy Kapur) who goes back in time to make his currently warring parents (Akshay- Aishwarya) fall in love. If that didn’t seem idiotic enough, the film actually ends with Akshay and Aishwarya falling in love. If only life were that simple.
2. Saawariya (2007)
Sanjay Leela Bhansali may have given us Ranbir Kapoor with Saawariya, but what about the precious time that those (few) poor souls lost watching that film? They’re probably still repenting wasting those three hours of their life that are never coming back. Pitted against the other Diwali release Om Shanti Om, not only did the film crumble at the box office but it was slammed left, right and centre by critics. Most people still consider it to be Bhansali’s worst film, and rightly so. To its credit, it made the ‘towel’ fashionable (remember Ranbir’s song?) and got some women swooning over, that’s all.
3. Asoka (2001)
Based on the early life of Emporer Asoka of Maurya Dynasty – Asoka is a historical drama film with Shah Rukh Khan playing Asoka, who decides to embrace Buddhism and spread peace around the world after a blood bath. The film was shot beautifully but became a box-office dud. It also received a lot of hate because of the fictional angle of romance between Asoka and Kaurwaki. In retrospect, a lot of the scenes seem comical, particularly the dance sequences between Shah Rukh and Kareena.
4. Ra.One (2011)
Shah Rukh Khan’s attempt at bringing the superhero genre to India may not have gone the way he imagined. The backlash the film received on social media gave us enough memes to laugh out loud about even today. Trying to be one of Bollywood’s first super hero films, Ra.One is about a computer programmer, Shekhar who tries to “fit in” in his son’s world by creating an indestructible virtual character which ends up entering the real world and creating chaos. Akon’s Chammak Challo became a rage, but everything else was eminently forgettable.
5. Jaane-E-Mann (2006)
It’s not surprising that the film is described as one of the most “bizarre” films ever made by audiences and critics. Here’s how the story line goes – Salman Khan plays a wannabe actor whose so self-centered that it drives away wife Preity Zinta. When Akshay Kumar shows up at his door, Salman and sidekick Anupam Kher get the idea of fixing him up with Preity so that the former can wriggle out of outstanding alimony. Anupam Kher playing a vertically-challenged man, most of the jokes were (obviously!) targeted at him. Yes, that sums up the story of the film. It is the cinematic equivalent of a painful sore.