It’s a bit of a twist on the usual Bollywood formula of boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy spends the rest of the movie trying to win girl back. But Kites means to set itself apart from the Bollywood mainstream. It’s enormous and flashy from the get-go - set in Las Vegas, with characters speaking a mix of Hindi, English and Spanish. We meet J, a dancer who makes ends meet by marrying illegal immigrants for money. His charm and dancing talents lead him to Gina, the wealthy daughter of a powerful Vegas big-wig. All is well until he’s introduced to Gina’s brother’s fiancé, Natasha. But he has met her before - it turns out that he’s married to her. Despite Natasha and J’s common gold-digging inclinations, their love cannot be denied. As the rest of the movie unfolds, the audience is taken on a roller coaster of car chases, shoot-outs (a la Desperado), betrayals, mobsters and dancing. And oh yes, there is dancing. Hrithik Roshan has a the physique of Gumby as he hops and pops through each musical sequence. To be honest, the music leaves a lot to be desired, leaning more toward Europop than Bhangra and almost devoid of any Indian influence. But this movie is set in Las Vegas, so it’s forgiven. Suspension of disbelief is required while watching Kites (How is J able to marry 11 times for immigration purposes?), but if you sit back and enjoy the ride it’s quite entertaining.
Directed by Anurag Basu; written by Robin Bhatt, Akarsh Khurana and Mr. Basu, based on a story by Rakesh Roshan; produced by Mr. Roshan; released by Reliance Big Pictures. In English and Hindi, with English subtitles. Running time: 2 hours 10 minutes. This film is not rated.
Starring: Hrithik Roshan, Barbara Mori, Kabir Bedi, Kangana Ranaut, and Nicholas Brown.