Time Out says
Bollywood God Amitabh Bachchan teams up with Tamil sensation Dhanush in this whimsical tale with shades of ‘The Artist’ and ‘Cyrano de Bergerac’. Danish (Dhanush) is a mute lad obsessed with making it big in the movies. Winding up at Mumbai’s Film City studio, he manages to impress female assistant director Akshara (Haasan).
But in the face of repeated rejections from directors, Danish and Akshara hatch a plan to use the voice of Amitabh (Bachchan), a failed actor with a unique baritone, and pass it off as Danish’s own. When the newcomer becomes successful, Amitabh feels sidelined, leading to a clash of egos between ‘the face’ and ‘the voice’.
This is clearly a star vehicle for the male leads. Bachchan’s effortless performance oozes confidence whilst Dhanush adds silent dignity. ‘Shamitabh’ seeks to highlight the behind-the-scenes idiosyncrasies of populist Hindi cinema, but it can lack subtlety, with some crude toilet humour, silly (if catchy) songs and a tendency to over-explain the plot.
Director R Balki is to be commended for tackling an unusual theme, but he is clearly in awe of the ‘Big B’, with lengthy scenes apparently contrived simply to showcase Amitabh’s legendary ‘versatility’. Bachchan’s millions of die-hard fans will be in speechless bliss.
Cast and crew