Film Review: Kung-Fu Yoga

If filmmakers had their way, history would be rewritten over and over again. But first, public awareness: a) Add comedy to the genre mentioned above — banal and unwitting comedy. b) There is no yoga, just yo-yo insanity which brings uncontrolled, unintended guffaws to the viewer.

The first eight minutes of the film depicts a convoluted, and even more confusing, history lesson encapsulating centuries of warfare and history. The history lesson, dating back to AD 647, has CGI-induced elephants and horses. Profession Jack (Chan, who else?) is an Indiana Jones type leading archeologist who specializes in Indian and Chinese history and who firmly believes that all the world’s treasure belongs to the world (well, China was once hardcore communist, in case you didn’t know). With his post-graduate student assistants Zhu and Nuomin, his treasure hunt leads him from China’s icy terrain (shot in picturesque Iceland) to the deserts of Rajasthan to the sprawling city of Dubai. Aiding him in his quest for gold and glory is Indian professor Ashmita (Disha Patani) and her assistant Kyra (Amyra Dastur). Ambushing the Indo-Chinese group is a baddie Randall (Sonu Sood) who claims hereditary ownership of the treasure. Randall and his hoodlums follow the professors to all the destinations above in their mission.

Though the 62-year-old Jackie Chan is clearly past his prime, his flair for comedy seems to be intact. Jones (Aarif Rehman) who plays Jack’s friend’s son, excels in his acrobatic moves. Disha Patani is largely there for the glamour quotient while Amyra Dastur is evidently hired to fill in the gaps. Seeing Sonu Sood, one gets the feeling that he’s missed out on his acting refresher courses for at least five consecutive years. With caged and uncaged humans and beasts, the film is a waste of collaboration between two neighbouring countries. The CGI would look outdated even in a Bhojpuri film. It’s the scenic locales and cinematography in faraway Iceland, though, that saves the day.

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