KRRISH dvd review

India Region-free NTSC DVD

Anamorphic Widescreen 2.35:1

Hindi DD 5.1, DD 2.0

Subtitles: English, Arabic, Dutch, French, Hebrew, Malay, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, Tamil, Telugu, Malayan



MOVIE: 7.5






Since the majority of Bollywood movies suck due to repetitiveness, lack of originality, amateur production, cheesy dialogue, overacting, adolescent representation of male & female relationships, I was happy to see KRRISH, the second superhero movie made in India (the first Indian superhero movie was called MR. INDIA made in 1987).

KRRISH is pretty satisfying and did live up to its hype when it was released in 2006. From 2006 until now, Indian special effects and action choreography has slightly improved so KRRISH feels a bit dated watching it now. If you’ve seen your fair share of Bollywood flicks, this movie is not only a good superhero movie, but for Bollywood standards, it was a  huge step up in the technical production, CGI, special effects, and fight choreography. KRRISH raised the standards for other Bollywood action films. Although Bollywood action movie standards will most likely not change as much as THE MATRIX caused a huge change for Hollywood action film standards, there is no reason for other Bollywood action movie filmmakers to keep on releasing half-assed movie productions with straight-to-video quality.

KRRISH is a sequel to 2003’s Bollywood E.T.-influenced sci-fi movie called KOI MIL GAYA. I was happy to see that KOI MIL GAYA was Bollywood’s stab at sci-fi, which is much appreciated, but that movie was simply awful. It got a lot of respect and good reviews, but it’s a painful movie to watch, unless you think a mentally retarded dude meeting an alien is entertainment. Even when the mentally retarded dude gets powers from the alien and stops acting retarded, he still seems retarded. In KRRISH, that mentally retarded person is the father to the main hero in KRRISH. That father-son connection is the only thing that connects these two movies. At first, I thought it’s a cheap way of connecting the two movies so that the director can make some trilogy out of these movies, but after watching KRRISH, the unrelatedness does make some wacky sense, so now I would be curious to watch KOI MIL GAYA again, but I sold it used for $4 to a DVD store and I ain’t buying that movie again, even if these movies, along with a definite KRISSH 2, will become a trilogy.

KRISSH is a very solid superhero movie. Since Bollywood is usually a decade behind, I was expecting a 1990s style superhero movie – Batman Forever, The Crow, The Punisher, The Shadow. But surprisingly, KRISSH follows in the same successful pattern as in current superhero trends – origin/back story and more drama than action. The first half of KRISSH is all character development and origin story of the superhero named Krissh (his alter ego first name is Krishna). This superhero character has as much or even more development than in Spiderman, Hulk or Batman Begins. The tone throughout the movie is a mixture of drama and very funny humor (I hate Bollywood comedy, but this movie has universal humor), unlike the dry Superman Returns. KRRISH is ten times more entertaining than Superman Returns by the way. Both movies have the drama factor and maybe twenty minutes worth of action, but KRRISH is just so much more entertaining. The action, choreographed by the great Tony Ching Siu Tung of HOUSE OF FLYING DAGGERS, HERO, SHAOLIN SOCCER fame, is pretty tame in this movie, but for a Bollywood movie or even a non-Hong Kong film, the action is still entertaining. The superhero, Krissh, is mainly a fast runner and big leaper, so the wire work is mainly the focus. Hrithik Roshan, starring as Krissh, did an amazing job with the action choreography and wirework – very graceful and not awkward. He trained like mad for this role and it shows. The action is a little bit more than in Superman Returns, but at least in KRISSH, most of the action scenes are memorable, because they are all creatively done even if they have been influenced or knocked-off of other Hollywood movies (Spiderman, Tarzan, Zorro, The Incredibles, Paycheck, The Matrix). Although there is more melodrama than action, the CGI/special effects are still used all throughout the movie in positive subtle ways, and not in a negative in-your-face George Lucas way.

For a superhero movie, it’s even a bit touching. You will really enjoy this movie if the following things don’t bug you:

1. The wind machine is always used in the presence of the superhero and the lead female.

2. Hrithik Roshan has a thumb that breaks off into two mini claw thumbs, which is very distracting to me, but I still think he’s one of Bollywood’s best screen presence. Since he is a superhero, they should have some super beam of light that shoots out his double claw thumb – sort of like a Green Thumb Lantern, instead of a ring.

3. Slow motion action – I personally love it, especially in superhero movies. It just works better. When you have characters dressed in costumes moving at real-time, it just looks silly.

4. I love songs in Bollywood movies, but the songs are just forgettable in this movie – nothing special and the movie would have been better (and a bit shorter) without the three to four songs in this flick.

The NTSC ALL REGION 2-disk DVD is a pretty sweet package. KRISSH is produced by a DVD company called ADLABS, a company known to make top-quality DVDs. The movie is on one disk and the plentiful extras are on the other. The anamorphic video is of excellent quality, especially for a Bollywood DVD – the colors are very vivid and three-dimensional, flattering the film’s excellent cinematography. The DD 5.1 Hindi and DD 2.0 Hindi are very nice as well. Your surrounds and subwoofer get a workout since this is a superhero action movie. There are tons of subtitles options on this DVD – you get English, Arabic, Dutch, French, Hebrew, Malay, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, Tamil, Telugu, and Malayan. Strangely, the Germans are left out. That’s weird because Germans love Bollywood. The English subtitles are good enough, with grammar mistakes here and there. There are some really good extras – although not subtitled, the main actors interviewed are all speaking English. There are about four 20-minute “making-of-the-film” clips. The best one is the training that Hrithik Roshan went through. It looked like the same heavy training as the actors in The Matrix went through. During Hrithik Roshan’s training, he wraps up his double claw thumb. I’m curious to why he does that. Is it painful or does it get in the way? There are also a bunch of trailers of bad Bollywood films and there is some “save-the-people” clip about some current genocide in India that the media never talks about. Overall, an excellent DVD package with really nice packaging as well. There is also a blu-ray version available, but I hear it’s a DNR mess, so I’m going to stick with my DVD.

If you like good superhero movies or if you are disappointed with most Bollywood movies, then I totally recommend KRRISH. I hope there will be sequels for this Indian superhero. If the director and producers were smart, they should also market this character into comic books, toys, etc. They should not only financially take advantage of creating a good Bollywood movie, but they should create a whole Indian pop culture out of the character. At least check out the movie for the India’s Monica Bellucci actress – Priyanka Chopra – winner of the Miss India and Miss World beauty pageants in 2000.