The push to popularise Bollywood in the West in the wake of Slumdog Millionaire takes an interesting turn with Kites, which is being released in two versions – a Hindi cut for the core Bollywood audience and an English-language edit to draw in new viewers. A further twist is that the English version, which is 30 minutes shorter, is edited by Brett Ratner (Rush Hour; X-Men: The Last Stand) and is said to be an edgier, racier
film, with the hallmark song-and-dance numbers excised to focus on high-speed action sequences instead. We get the Hindi cut in Dubai cinemas this week – Ratner’s ‘remix’ is said to follow next week.

From the trailer, the latter has all the makings of a bad movie classic. The mismatched-lovers-on-the-run premise strings together silly set pieces featuring cartoon baddies and godawful ‘lost in translation’ exchanges between the English-speaking Indian hero (Bollywood hunk Hrithik Roshan) and a Spanish-spouting Mexican beauty (Barbara Mori). We can’t help but think it’ll be tough to ‘get’ Bollywood, an almost pantomime-like medium, without the songs. Still, it’s an interesting idea, which is why we plan to check out both films.


Genre: Action, Romance, Thriller
Released: May 20th
Director: Anurag Basu
Stars: Hrithik Roshan, Bárbara Mori, Steven Michael Quezada, Kabir Bedi, Luce Rains, Kangana Ranaut, Nicholas Brown, Anand Tiwari, Jamie Haqqani, Dave Colon, Ivan Brutsche
Language: Hindi
Classification: PG15
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