Friday, May 17, 2013

Bollyweird: 'The Undertaker' Takes New Dehli

Okay, it's not really the title.  Would you be as interested in Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi?  It's not that there's anything wrong with that title- in the original Hindi anyhow- but it does little to sell us in the United States.  It's apparently part of a series of films featuring the same lead, but that's not why I picked it for review.  No, I picked it due to its villain: The Undertaker.  Even most non-wrestling fans can recognize The Phenom, but I'll give a quick summary for the rest of you.  The Undertaker has been a staple of the WWF/WWE since late 1990, holding multiple titles and holding an Undefeated Streak at Wrestlemania (the Super Bowl of Pro-Wrestling) of 21-0.  Now here's the catch: this film does not really feature The Undertaker.  Back in 1994, a story was done involving a fake Undertaker (nicknamed the Underfaker) battling the real one.  Two years after that story was dropped as quickly as it started (they had one match, I believe), the man who played the role- Brian Lee- got cast as 'The Undertaker' in this film.  It also features another Pro-Wrestler- Brian Adams- and a whole bunch of people speaking in dubbed Hindi.  Here's another thing: this movie was made in Canada.  I'm not sure why really, but that's what happened.  It's the story of crime, gambling and undead Pro-Wrestlers working for villains in Canada.  To see how this crazy film ended up, read on...
The film begins with a wrestling match on the roof of a Canadian building between Fake Undertaker (wearing a silly sash) and Crush, who's back-story here is that he ate all of the Miners trapped with him.  Ew and huh?

Fun Fact: Crush here would later serve as a Bodyguard for Randy Savage on his Rap Tour.  That has nothing to do with anything, but does give me an excuse to link to this.
Their match is...well, it's not good.  Lee has Undertaker's mannerisms down, but his performance level...not so much.

Crush ends up dying, but his body gets discovered with a link to the criminals clutched in his hand.
This is still a Bollywood film, so prepare for the first of several Musical Numbers that completely stop the story cold.  Yea.
I suppose you're wondering what film this is a Rip-Off of.  There's not one in particular for the whole film, but they do steal whole-sale from Rumble in the Bronx.  Here he is doing a move called The Flying Lewinsky.
Our hero becomes the Champion for the lady Mobster and faces off with The 'Undertaker.'  How does that go?

While he recovers from that, let's stop the film for yet another Musical Number.  There's only seven (or so).
In their second face-off, our hero finally emerges victorious.  The real Undertaker has been buried alive (twice), locked in a coffin (at least twice), burned alive (at least once) & forced to try and make Giant Gonzalez look good at Wrestlemania.  He's a survivor.
Remember when I said that they ripped off Rumble in the Bronx.  In the Climax, our hero chases a bad guy on a Hovercraft and even runs him over with it.  Subtle, huh?
Our heroes jump away from a poorly-blended digital explosion and live happily ever after.  The End.
If you like crazy things, this is for you.  If you don't know who the fake Undertaker is, you may not find this as funny.  As an actual film, the thing is way too long (nearly 3 hours) and poorly-paced.  The opening fight, for example, is really long.  Basically, it's like watching the Kane & Undertaker vs. Kronik (also featuring Brian 'Crush' Adams) match.  If you've seen it, you'd know what I mean.  If you can deal with the length of the film, it's got a lot of action in it.  Granted, most of it is silly, but you take what you can get.  As a Bollywood film, it's pretty much all fluff.  There's very little substance here.  What is a bit odd in addition is just how much blood is in the film.  It plays like a mostly-All Ages film (save for some murder), but gets REALLY bloody at the End.  Oh and I still don't know why this was made in Canada and features a bunch of American Pro-Wrestlers.  Your guess is as good as mine.  If you're a fan of obscure and crazy films, this is *almost* the motherload.  That would still be The Dragon Lives Again, of course.  Take us away, great choreography...
Next up, a look at a pair of recent Horror Sequels with a weird thing in common.  First up, we return to Silent Hill, 3-D is profitable.

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