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Gangster antics

Manya Surve (John Abraham) is a good boy who is falsely convicted of murder. He escapes from jail and instantly builds a fiefdom of rotten, sexist thugs—an addition to the gangs during their heyday in Mumbai. Zubair (Manoj Bajpai) and Dilawar (Sonu Sood) head the rival gang.

Some things do not change. Director Sanjay Gupta’s every action sequence is shot in slow motion. Every entry of a new character is in slow motion. Bits of the three item numbers in the film—yes, three—are in slow motion.

A loose, directionless script and insipid dialogues (Manya and his men are often engaged in long conversations about the female anatomy) take their toll half an hour into the film.

Abraham tries very hard to play a brooding, ruthless gangster but the character does not engage. The bad writing, of course, does not help. Bajpai is predictably good in his dialogue-baazi; so is Sood.

As far as borrowed scenes go, Shootout at Wadala has the most unimaginative copy of a scene previously borrowed or alluded to by film-makers: the assassination of Sonny Corleone at the toll plaza.

Shootout at Wadala released in theatres on Friday.

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