Teen Patti Movie Review

After a disastrous outing with Shabd half a decade ago, Leena Yadav returns with a dream-cast. It can’t get bigger or better than Amitabh Bachchan and Sir Ben Kingsley sharing screen-space, can it? Leena with help from producer Ambika Hinduja, has also managed to rope in several other talented actors – Madhavan, Raima Sen and several other in short cameos like Shakthi Kapoor and Ajay Devgan to name a few. All could mean nothing if the script and its execution go wrong, does Leena get it right with Teen Patti? Read on. 

What works for Teen Patti

  • The movie is loosely inspired from Hollywood film ’21’, but Leena has to an extent  successfully managed to transform the idea to suit the Indian audience.
  • After directing a pretty clueless film, the director has been improved considerably as a story teller.  Her style of narration though remains complicated, something that wouldn’t appeal to one and all.
  • The interactions between Sir Ben and Amitabh Bachchan are a treat to watch and its the later’s performance, the way he effortlessly gets into his character, rising above the script in several sequences that make Teen Patti a decent one time watch.
  • Madhavan, again playing a much-younge-than-his-age role, gets it right, although shedding a bit of weight and adding a bit of exuberance to his character would have only made his performance look better.
  • Amongst the many cameos in the film, Shakti Kapoor’s role stands out. His daughter – Sharaddha on debut – does reasonably well too.
  • Teen Patti is high on style and the visuals are fantastic. The music is good, especially the Neeyat Kharab Hai song, which was stylishly picturized.

What doesn’t work for Teen Patti

  • The film sadly isn’t for everyone. It lacks entertainment value and it certainly isn’t a film that you would want to watch with your family.
  • The pace is slow, so slow at times that quite a few were seen walking out of theaters in the first half itself. Part of the blame should go to the repeated dialogues and a couple of unnecessary scenes.
  • Wonder what Ajay Devgan and Jackie Shroff were doing in the film, insignificant cameos.
  • The narrative is always in flashback mode and the director switches back and forth which could confuse the viewers.

Overall, catch Teen Patti this weekend if your keen on watching Sir Ben Kingsley and our very own Bachchan on the big screen, otherwise you’d be better off waiting for the DVD or television premier.

Rating: ★★½☆☆
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20 Comments

  • hmmm…Indicine… I read the reviews of other critics which you posted in another link…but i refrained from commenting on them as yours is the only credible review i look forward to.

    The movie hasn’t released in theatres of Pakistan (neither has KCK), so i’ll have to commit the crime again by watching both on DVDs (i seriously wish i dont have to do this…but am left with no other option as i cant wait for the original DVDs to arrive ;)

    I loved your review. the reviews by the others seemed as complicated as the narrative of this movie seems to be. The way you have described it already makes me a bit disappointed. Shabd was a tiring excercise for my mind (although i didn’t hate it yet it was like sitting through a tough exam). I only thought TP will be better due to the cast associated.

    Well lets see…will watch both the films over Saturday and Sunday.

    Thanks alot for the review…waiting for review of KCK.

  • Akhlaq, really glad you liked the review. Was quite difficult watching two movies, and reviewing both with fever, cold and just about everything :)

    Looking forward to your review.

    Sad that the movie hasn’t released in Pakistan. What’s also sad is today, if alive, Divya Bharati would have turned 30!

  • @ indicine.

    will watch the movies on sat. night and sunday. as tonight is a Holy night for Muslims. Our Holly Prophet (peace be upon him) was born on this date of Islamic calendar (12 Rabi ‘Ul Awal)

    So Insha Allah…it is going to be a blessed night dedicated to “IBADAT”

    Will post my reviews on Sunday Insha Allah.

  • Oh and yeah…wish you all the best for the fever and cold. Stay away from anti-biotics though. I took those last week and have spent this one with cramped stomach :)

  • very good film. Big B done a fantastic job . Teen Patti is a different kind of film . Leena yadav’s direction is excellence . Story is the main USP of the film . Madhvan just outstanding . Music is OK

    My rating for this movie 3.5/5 .

  • Indicine thanks for remembering Divya bharati. She was just 18 when she died. Maybe because of her age you miscalculated her age. She would have been 36 today. Nice observation that Sajid Nadiadwala (who was her husband) might have released the trailer yesterday. Your site is special. Thanks.

    Teen Patti I will be watching tomorrow. Will post my review.

  • this is a going to be avg movie ..\
    all the films of 2010 till now was only abv avg / avg/ bel avg. …. none of the movie is hit

    waiting for housefull will it be a first hit of 2010 eagerly

  • @indicine- liked ur review 4 clarity, which i din’t find dat much in d other reviews i’ve read! Hav u guys seen 21? If so, den is teen patti better dan it or not? If u havn’t, den must watch 21!!!

    P.S. get well soon!!

  • I could say from the trailer that it’s not a good movie, I saw recently some trailers but nothing was appealing to me except Tabbu’s movie with Sharman Joshi ( can’t remember the name of the movie) but sounds good.

  • Bad news for all SRK fans

    Bollybusiness : Bollywood boxoffice

    MNIK

    MNIK 2 weeks collections are 58 Crores

    Meanwhile MNIK dropped heavily today and show occupancy as low as 5% . 15th Day of MNIK should end up making 30-35 Lakhs.

    Verdict – Flop or Below average

  • Teen Patti Movie Review

    If you find an interesting and different promo then it doesn’t mean that the movie is also upto the mark. Teen Patti unfortunately falls into this very category. From clips Teen Patti looked inspired by Hollywood style of presentation. But in reality this isn’t the case.
    Story:

    Professor Venkat Subramaniam (Amitabh Bachan) is a mathematician and he has formulated a unique theory about the probability of the numbers. He applies his this theory on playing cards and carries 100 % success ratio.Venkat and some of his students decide to try out gambling in actual. They start wining lots of money but suddenly Venkat receives a phone call from a blackmailer saying that he knows everything about them and he wants 50 % share. Venkat has no option other than giving money. Who was that blackmailer? How Professor Venkat and company catch him? Teen Patti is all about this.

    First thirty minutes are very interesting but when Prof. Venkat receives a phone call from the blackmailer what proceeds after wards is usual Hindi Cinema Drama.

    Positives:

    • Idea is unique and different.

    • Amitabh and all other supporting actors have done a good job especially Sharadha Kapoor (daughter of Shakti Kapoor).

    • Music is good especially Niyyat Kharab hai is well executed sensuous song.

    • Director has handled the basic idea very well.

    • Chemistry between Amithab Bachan and Sir Ben Kingsley.

    Negatives:

    • Script is dull, lackluster and prolonged. Script lacks continuity. First 30 minutes are good but afterwards script collapses altogether.

    • Both romantic pairs (Madhavan and Riya, Sharadha and Siddhart) lack chemistry.

    • Interval comes at good point and ones interest level keeps him hooked for the second half to begin. But unfortunately after interval nothing changes much.

    • Special appearances of Jackie Sheroff, Ajay devgan and Shakti Kapoor are un-affective.

    • Madhavan’s second affair with the foreigner girl is needless.

    Overall:

    Teen Patti’s comes up with a novel idea but director Leena yadav has failed in the execution department.

    Rating:

    Professor Venkat and his students will unfortunately lose the Box-office gamble.

    1.5 / 5

    bollyplus.com

  • Nauman dude good review… movie was not bad… i was not interested in watching but watched it becos few friends wanted to… I felt it was much better than shabd

  • suniel bhai
    so now r u happy i wrote short and do the point review. yaar believe me i didnt like even i was waiting that when it gonna finish and was thinking i dont know all other critics gave it 2 or 2.5 i cant cross 1.5
    now waiting for Atithi… looks good but one thing i am damn sure that movie will be very slow like ghoma phira ke baat wahi pe .
    what do u think ?

  • IBOS NETWORK.COM

    THIS IS FOR ALL CINEMA LOVERS

    My Name is Declined: Looking ahead at Shahrukh Khan’s career outlook after MNIK demise
    Monday, February 22, 2010

    Dev Patel of the $370 million (Rs. 1700 crore)
    grosser Slumdog Millionaire is a bigger
    international star than Shahrukh Khan

    The difference between a star and a superstar is that while a star gives hits occasionally, a superstar (whoever he is at the time) is expected to give the biggest hit and the superstar’s films are always expected to take the biggest, top initial across India at the box office. To be excluded from this are actresses like Katrina Kaif or a Kareena Kapoor, who while maybe considered top heroines, are almost always incidental to the film’s box office fate. That is to say, you can replace one with the other and it wouldn’t affect the film’s box office all that much. Barring a Meena Kumari, Hema Malini, Sridevi, Madhuri Dixit and to a lesser extent Aishwarya Rai (though some would dispute this too), heroines don’t have much impact on box office fates of Indian films.

    That brings the discussion to primarily in the domain of actors and leading men, of which Shahrukh Khan has been billed, by the media atleast, as the #1 leading man at the box office, a proposition that continuously falls on its face time and again. In fact Shahrukh Khan has repeatedly failed to measure up to the claim despite heavy political and media support for this actor over the past 15 years. To start off breaking this down before we do the lookahead, let’s use a man he often used to compare himself to for these types of comparisions earlier, Amitabh Bachchan.

    Today in his 60s, Amitabh Bachchan is a star who occasionally delivers hits like Black or Paa or Cheeni Kum. But Amitabh Bachchan was the undisputed superstar of the box office from January 1975 (when Deewar opened at 100% box office on 24th January 1975 and went on to run a platinum jubilee running next to Sholay later in the year) to January 1989 when after opening to 100% and a record box office response, Ganga Jamuna Saraswati crashed in its 2nd week. Still, even after the Ganga Jamuna Saraswati crash the biggest opener of 1989 was not Salman Khan’s Maine Pyaar Kiya, or Anil Kapoor’s Ram Lakhan but rather Amitabh Bachchan’s Toofan. Similarly the biggest opener of 1990 wasn’t Aamir Khan’s Dil or Salman Khan’s post-MPK release Baaghi or even Sunny Deol’s Ghayal, but rather it was Bachchan’s Aaj Ka Arjun. In 1991, the biggest opener was again Amitabh Bachchan’s recordbreaking opener Hum. Even in the ‘disputed’ phase of his ‘reign’ as the superstar, he was delivering the #1 initials and remained the highest paid actor till 1998. But in most of the years between 1973-1992, Bachchan starrers were the top grossers and occasionally as happened to be the case in 1978, the top 4 grossers of the year (Muqaddar Ka Sikandar, Don, Trishul, Ganga Ki Saugandh).

    Now let’s bring this back to Shahrukh Khan. Even in his prime, Shahrukh Khan was never the undisputed superstar unlike Amitabh Bachchan. Right after Kuch Kuch Hota Hai in 1998, his next: Baadshah, sunk; failing to take the top opening of 1999 and then flattening out. Shahrukh Khan was not in either biggest opener nor the biggest grosser of the decade of the 1990s nor of the 2000s. And many feel if he sustained near the top through the 2000s, it was more to do with fact that most of new entries of 2000s decade such as Vivek Oberoi, Abhishek Bachchan, Uday Chopra, Ritesh Deshmukh, Abhay Deol were more there due to family labels and lacked either ambition or talent themselves. But despite this, Shahrukh Khan’s films year in and out did not take the #1 initial. His biggest blockbusters were prone to being outinitialed or outgrossed by films of other 2 Khans, along with a Hrithik Roshan, Sunny Deol (circa Gadar) and couple others like Akshay Kumar later on. Now granted none of them went on to dominate box office themselves, but none of them go around claiming to be Kings or #1s either.

    Which is exactly what the problem with Shahrukh Khan is and has been. Despite the Indian media collective and congress government literally taking the country’s resources and putting it on the line for this guy, his biggest film ever, My Name Is Khan failed to open anywhere near the top, missing the top in opening at the box office by a distance and will have had a comparatively premature demise at the end also, causing many losses. By the end of the year, several films of several stars will leave box office collections of Khan in the dust.

    And now after MNIK, Shahrukh Khan does not have any more releases coming up this year. He’s 45 and it is difficult to see where his trajectory goes from here as he’s facing a number of problems. Let’s examine these problems in detail and regardless of political correctness.

    Firstly though he aspires to be an international star, internationally he will never be reaching level of even a Dev Patel (of the $370 million grossing Slumdog Millionaire fame) let alone an Antonio Banderas in the 90s, a crossover star there, due to cultural reasons. A muslim chanting ‘My Name Is Khan’ was never going to become a big star in America, and only a deluded understanding of USA held by likes of Karan Johar would have imagined so. Johar’s understanding of India itself is doubtful let alone America, Karan Johar is a bigger deal among industry tweeters than he is with Indian audiences. Which is why his Koffee with Karan or Lift Kara De end up getting lower TRPs in India than many other trivial shows. What is going to be an advantage in Karachi will be a disadvantage in mainstream Chicago or Chandrapur as we’ll discuss below. America is a liberal country and tolerates muslims also, but it is not a foolish country, or unidimensional the way depicted in ridiculous bollywood cinema like Kurbaan and MNIK. These movies have no chance outside the usual Karan Johar/Khan segments from handful of countries settled as generation 1 migrants to USA.

    So mainstream America is out for Shahrukh Khan. If the goal then is to become a middle eastern icon because of his proclivity to utter My Name Is Khan, then well there are a couple problems with that also. Culturally, the mid-east is not particularly homogeneously understanding of Hindi nor liberal enough overall which cinema needs. Secondly, and more importantly, a Qatar or a Baharain or even Pakistan, they are not all that consequential compared to India economically, let alone the west. If they were, they would have had their own established film industries by now. India is ahead of them all. It is the world’s 2nd largest country by population and one of the major markets on earth, and will always be the dominant, determining market for Hindi films, with an economy that’s outperforming the global recession and even some western countries. In Mumbai, many multiplexes’ ticket rates are now about same as what US customers pay at US theaters. Ticket prices in even multiplexes like Indore, Madhya Pradesh and Kanpur are now substantial, except since Mumbai is quite saturated this is where the major theater economy growth will be coming in the years ahead. So if you keep your eye on the ball, the arrows are pointing towards the Hindi markets once more, and you can’t ignore the audiences’ sensibilities there.

    Following off from that, secondly, because of the increasing cloud around his ’support for Pakistanis like Sohail Tanvir’ politics, the middle India audiences are tuning Shahrukh Khan out. Especially middle class and mass screens Hindus (which were never particularly heavily in support of Shahrukh Khan cinema anyway). This is backed up by increasingly pedestrian TRPs when he is on television which is more dominated by this demographic. But bottomline is even at box office you can’t get to those top all India initials let alone top overall grossers if the Hindis don’t let you. It simply can’t be done. It can work the other way (ex. Gadar) but not in this direction.

    Finally his politics apart, the other big problem for Shahrukh Khan is now age, which is not on his side. He’s closer to 50 than 30. An entire new generation of audiences has entered the theaters to whom overseas locales are no big deal, are much more confident about India (last year’s big hits: 3I, Ajab Prem, Paa etc. all primarily set in India) and for whom Shahrukh Khan-Kajol movies like Kuch Kuch Hota Hai are themselves old, dated cinema.

    This happens to all stars and aspiring superstars at some point. And there is nothing to be done about that. New stars are here and will come who will look, fresher, quicker, and more in tune with the times than Khan. And it will strike to him that people don’t go to cinemas to watch khans. They go to cinema to get entertained. And accumulated hostilites from the Hindus, and accumulated wrinkles on the face, accumulated lack of speed brought on by the natural process of aging, tend to point to Shahrukh Khan’s declining fortunes in the coming years. Not unlike an Anil Kapoor after the early-90s, if he’s lucky.

    The days of staking claim to the #1 superstardom for Shah Rukh Khan have been gone for a few years now and are probably gone forever. The question is how long can he delay the inevitable and remain a star.

  • IBOS NETWORK.COM

    Box Office: MNIK down and out in India, crashes in America also; Teen Patti next
    Monday, February 22, 2010

    Leaving trade publicists spinning further, MNIK crashed by around 70% again over its 2nd weekend. In India, the film could barely net over 8 crores; helped comparatively by Mumbai’s 65% crash compared to the blowout in places like Indore (on a 80%+ nosedive) in middle India. The film generally has been in relapse since opening Monday. Even where its not a washout the drops have been huge. At this point, My Name Is Khan is looking at a 55-60 crore run at the end in the country and a boatload of losses.

    Outside India, if the hopes were to compensate the losses in India with a Slumdog Millionaire type run overseas, that is not going to happen. My Name Is Khan has crashed in USA also dropping over 64% in its 2nd weekend. Never mind Slumdog Millionaire, it won’t be able to catch 3 Idiots from bollywood itself overseas. And the irony is 3 Idiots was set in India not San Francisco. UK’s heavy muslim/Pakistani population supported MNIK better with drop of around 50% but in the end this segment won’t be nearly enough.

    Overall the 100 crore film needing 250 crore gross revenues for the distributor has come out cropper and will be a major loser. The optimistic estimates are losses of 15-20 crores. With the release of Amitabh Bachchan’s Teen Patti and Karthik calling Karthik, followed by the likes of Athithi Kab Jaoge the chances for My Name Is Khan are pretty much over. Suffice to say Fox International will not be burning its hands on Shah Rukh Khan or ‘My Name is Khan’ type cinema anytime soon.

    Last week’s Tabu starrer Toh Baat Pakki couldn’t make much head way either, opening at 5% and staying thereabouts. ‘Click’ too is not faring well, both look to end up under 2 crores.

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