Animal, directed by Sandeep Reddy Vanga, starts off on a sprint but soon trips over its own ambitious plot, turning what could have been a cinematic feast into a rather indigestible meal. With a cast led by the likes of Ranbir Kapoor and Anil Kapoor, one would expect a firecracker of a movie, but alas, it fizzles out quicker than a damp squib.
The film revolves around Vijay (Ranbir Kapoor), a character with daddy issues so prominent, they could have their own billing in the cast. His father, Balbir (Anil Kapoor), is too busy for him, and apparently, that’s reason enough for Vijay to take a nosedive into the world of bestiality and violence. The movie tries to paint Vijay as a sympathetic figure, a task akin to convincing us that a square peg fits perfectly into a round hole.
For 201 minutes, we are looped into a narrative that hammers home just one point: poor Vijay didn’t get daddy’s hugs. So, naturally, all his subsequent crass remarks, ill-conceived romances, and a penchant for violence are justifiable. After all, a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do when he’s short on paternal love, right?
In the first half, Vanga seems to have his hand steady on the tiller, giving us glimpses of rural Punjab and some action scenes that are more macho than a cologne commercial. Ranbir Kapoor does his best impression of a human bazooka, but then the second half rolls in, and it’s like the director just threw everything at the wall to see what sticks. Spoiler alert: not much does. Bobby Deol makes an appearance, playing a character so similar to his role in ‘Ashram’ that you wonder if he wandered onto the wrong set.
The women in the film, including Rashmika Mandanna and Tripti Dimri, are relegated to the sidelines, their characters as developed as a sketch on a napkin. They react, they support, but hey, they don’t really matter because, as the movie loudly declares, “it’s a man’s world.”
Anil Kapoor and Ranbir Kapoor try valiantly to breathe life into their characters, but it’s like trying to inflate a punctured tire – ultimately futile. The film’s length feels like a marathon with no finish line, a test of endurance for the audience.
In conclusion, Animal is a movie that had the ingredients for a blockbuster but ended up being a cautionary tale of what happens when you let a story run wild without a leash. It’s a visual spectacle with all the depth of a kiddie pool. If you’re into watching big names lost in a bigger mess, Animal might just be your pick for the weekend.
⭐ (1/5 Stars)