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'Crew' movie review: Cray

Updated on: 29 March,2024 10:18 PM IST  |  Mumbai
Mayank Shekhar |

Crew movie review: The film gets on a flight of imagination so ludicrous, without a bandwidth for it, that I felt like heading off the exit, at some point

'Crew' movie review: Cray

Still from Crew

Film: Crew
Director: Rajesh A Krishnan
Actors: Tabu, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Kriti Sanon
Rating: 2/5

To be certain, the filmmakers have reached their target demographic right, I sense, from a half-packed hall, for a 9 am, first day, first show, at my local theatre.
Which, in general, is a pretty uncommon sight. The gender ratio of the audience is skewed towards women. Given, I guess, the three heroines flashed across the film’s poster/trailers.

Namely, Tabu, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Kriti Sanon—among the top female stars from their respective generations, or age-groups, at any rate.

Throughout the pic, they’re pretty much dressed in flight-attendant uniforms. Mostly at work, therefore. Only that their side-profession is they’re con-women of sorts. More like mules smuggling contrabands on flights.

This is also a chick flick. I thought I was in for the initial Thelma & Louise kinda vibe-check. Okay, even if we don’t go that far (and please, let’s not), the leading ladies gel fairly well.

If anything, Kriti Sanon appears confidently carefree, both easygoing and easy on the eye—this compliment is essential for the veterans she’s sandwiched between. After all, Tabu is what Tabu does. Same for Kareena, no?

As a film, Crew falls squarely into the mind-space that Rhea Kapoor (sometimes, along with Ekta Kapoor) have together produced in the past—starting with Aisha (2010), Khoobsurat (2014), the sorts of Veere Di Wedding (2018), Thank You For Coming (2023), if you may.

By which I merely mean a medium-budget, low-brow entertainer, subverting the lol mainstream, with scripts (this one, written by Nidhi Mehta, Mehul Suri), fully centred on the female protagonist/s, instead.

Wherein even marquee Punjab males, Kapil Sharma, Diljit Dosanjh, show up for walk-on parts here, and that’s just as well.

How does Crew—love how this title in Devanagari (on screen) becomes just one letter, ‘ka’, and lots of ‘maatras’—measure up to the girls’ night-outs mentioned above?

Flies higher, for sure, while that may not be saying much! Sufficiently keeps you on your seats, without the belts on, to start with.

It’s directed by Rajesh A Krishnan, who’s similarly filmed the ensemble-cast caper, Lootcase (2020), on Disney+ Hotstar, that I couldn’t sit through, beyond a point, during the pandemic. What draws you to this, foremost?

I guess the intriguing world of desi flight-attendants—as they go about travelling the globe, with daily allowances paid in cash-dollars.

They work round-the-clock in an airline named Kohinoor, with in-flight entertainment that offers the company’s owner himself in a video; informing passengers of his handpicked services.

This gentleman is named Vijay Walia, if I heard that right. His airline company is going under. The staff is dressed in Kingfisher red. Their salaries have stopped. The boss is busy lavishly partying still. Vijay Mallya’s inspired a crappy murder mystery, Neeyat (2023), starring Vidya Balan, already!

Deem it poetic punishment/justice, perhaps, that he gets parodied further in an aasmani kahaani (sky story) about sona (gold), that employees ferry on his flights, while incessantly chattering about sona (sleeping) with men, as ‘ku ku ku’ from the song, Choli ke peeche, plays in the background, also foreground, along with the other Ila Arun number, Dilli sheher mein maro ghagro....

Even as the movie switches, on occasion, into altogether advertising spots, and you keenly check out brands, from Ajio, Goibibo, to Wow Momo’s, Bikaji bhujias… The only product worth endorsing are anxiety pills that Tabu’s character pops, named Calm Pose.

None of which really bother you much. Yeah, it’s not that funny. But you’re somewhat sold on a ride, since this is a tightly timed, two-hour, no-sweat pic, about pretty women. What’s there to crib?

Only that an hour since a decent take-off, once you alight for a stopover, i.e. the interval, you realise, Crew has literally nowhere to go; okay, screwed now!

The film gets on a flight of imagination so ludicrous, without a bandwidth for it, that I felt like heading off the exit, at some point. Either way, hope this lands well for you. Not my scene, gonna crash now. 

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