Seemingly based on the real incident of a war between two warring Gujjar gangs way back in ‘90s, Zila Ghaziabad tries to encash every formula out there that makes for a superhit commercial film. However, quite like its inspiration the film also turns out to be jaded and cliched appearing straight out of the ‘90s zone.
Filmmaker Anand Kumar relies heavily on the age old tricks so you have two item songs, one melodramatic mother, a selfless doting heroine, an revenge thirsty brother, another heroine to deliver the dialogue “Main tumhare bache ki maa banne wali hoon”, a goon who will not stop at anything, some politicial tamasha and a cop who doubles up as a hoodlum.
To add to the agony is the deafening and jarring background score which makes it excruciating for you to sit through the film. If the background score isn’t enough you have actors competing to outdo one another on their decible levels so much so that there’s a scene where Vivek Oberoi literally roars loudly to mark his change as a dreadful goon! Yet another sore to the ear is the music album. Anand Kumar has a song for every mood and all sounding similar to the ones you may have heard in the past among the many commercial films. The lyrics are lackluster or even distasteful and vulgar in the case item songs.
The authenticity is another big thing in question in the film. Anand Kumar takes the most exploited shooting location Wai and claims it to be Ghaziabad throughout the film. Even a regular cine goer who has seen movies like Omkara, Swades, Dabangg or the more recent Bol Bachchan can easily identify the place.
It’s quite natural to see ample action sequences in a gangster drama and keeping up with the latest fad of over the top action, filmmaker Anand Kumar presents some unintentionally hilarious action sequences where the actors are literally flying in the air that make you fall off your seats laughing.
Zila Ghaziabad disappoints even in the acting department. Vivek Oberoi who has only been overacting in all his recent films continues the trend in this too as he hams his way through the way. After a point you start noticing how his cheeks or his eye brows start acting for him.
You really have to be a magician to make Sanjay Dutt run perpendicularly on a wall or swing from one end to the other while performing action stunts and certainly Anand Kumar isn’t one. The leading ladies Charmy Kaur and Minissha Lamba are needlessly inserted in the plot while the likes Paresh Rawal, Ravi Kissen, Ashutosh Rana, Divya Dutta and Chandrachur Singh totally get wasted. Geeta Basra and Shriya Saran as item girls only disappoint.
Call it the horrendous performances of the other or his acting talent, Arshad Warsi clearly stands out as the best of the lot. Zila Ghaziabad, in short, is total hogwash in the name of gangster films. Mounds of money put to royal waste. I give the film 1 star.
By Swati Rohatgi