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Friday, June 3, 2011
Anees Bazmee
Salman Khan, Asin, Arya Babbar, Paresh Rawal, Puneet Issar, Mahesh Manjrekar, Akhilendra Mishra
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Not the story, not the acting, not the plot, not the music: Salman’s biceps are enough to carry the film and make you go Dhinka chika Dhinka chika on your seats right till the end.

The plot: After some airport jumble Sanjana (Asin) lands at the house of Prem (Salman) to escape her bad maamus (Sharat Saxena and Akhilendra Mishra). She ends up falling in love with the hunk himself after a genial mêlée. Prem the hero will do anything for his heroine, he’s the sort who believes, what’s a love story sans obstacles? He wants to have some interesting scoops to tell their children. To accomplish this he decides to get Sanjana out of the clutches of those bad maamus and convert them into good maamus and he eventually succeeds. The whole process of conversion from uncouth, mean, greedy maamus to decent, well-dressed civilized maamus involves situational farce and fake identities. When the real identities are finally unveiled at the climax, the wedding day of Sanjana and Prem, the inevitable “yeh shaadi nahi ho sakti…” emerges and the rest is Salman’s body that takes over the action, comedy, drama and everything else.

The good: Salman Khan. The film glides on his bulging biceps and he pulls it off in a way no one else could. Just his presence is enough to make you ignore the blemishes of the film, which are by no means few. Sallu, just by being himself adds the entire comedy quotient to the movie. He manages to drive the plot even in the most clichéd scenes and predictable dialogue, with his aura and star power. He deserves a special mention for living up to our expectations and being our good ol’ Prem. This inane comedy will appeal to the front-benchers and de-stress the riff-raff. The music adds a “gully party” mood and already seems to have become a ringtone for most of the hoi polloi with its colourful ‘Dhinka chika’ and ‘Character dheela’. Many of the dialogues in the film have the potential to become signature Salman dialogues like “koi toh rok lo inhe…” The locations are well shot and rescue the stale clichés with their freshness. The performances by the supporting actors are laudable, with Sudesh Lehri subtly doing his job without being over-the-top, difficult in a comedy. Akhilendra Mishra, Mahesh Manjrekar, Anooradha Patel, Puneet Issar and Sharat Saxena have also done justice to their roles in this comic rollercoaster. Paresh Rawal is tremendous as he plays his subdued character with finesse.

The bad: Anees Bazmee tries to excel in asinine interludes, continuing the trend from No Problem, Thank You etc, but it’s high time he tried farce with some more brainy hilarity to it. This would attract another section of viewers who enjoy smart comedies. The direction has many loose ends, especially in situations where innovative thinking would have been appreciated rather than sticking to the hoary ol’ formula. For instance the scene where they try to convert the bad guys into good reminds you of Welcome. Asin is not that great in the film and frequently looks over-the-top. The cameos by Sanjay Dutt and Ajay Devgn are irrelevant and disconnected from the rest of the film. The script appears careless and inattentive in the first half, the dots don’t really join and the gags are ho-hum. The story is unrealistic, senseless, ballistic, and bizarre, but if you knew where you were heading you wouldn’t mind this. A onetime watch for the masala flick aficionado and anyone who loves Salman. With his magnetism and charisma he takes you through an unoriginal, superfluous jest-fest.

–  Pooja Thakkar

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