Posts Tagged ‘ Arshad Warsi ’

Dedh Ishqiya

Dedh Ishqiya movie hd poster
Dedh Ishqiya
Release date: January 10, 2014
Directed by: Abhishek Chaubey
Cast: Naseeruddin Shah, Arshad Warsi, Madhuri Dixit-Nene, Huma Qureshi, Vijay Raaz, Manoj Pahwa, Salman Shahid

Be it Ishqiya or Dedh Ishqiya, both the films have an ‘Ishqiya’ in their titles and what is Ishqiya (love) without an underlying element of fun in it? There is constant admiration, respect, longing and an eventual appreciation of each other’s choices. Similarities are aplenty between the prequel and this sequel, Krishna (Vidya Balan) was the center of Iftekhaar or Khalu Jaan (Naseeruddin Shah) and Razzakh or Babban’s (Arshad Warsi) romantic interests. She was poised and a firebrand simultaneously. In this film, both of them have separate women to catch their attention. Begum Para (Madhuri Dixit-Nene) is elegant and poised, Munira (Huma Qureshi) is the thrill-seeker realist who grounds her man.

There are the differences too. Quite in your face at that as well. Khalu Jaan transforms into his own as Iftekhaar and wants to live for himself. Khalu almost surrendered his feelings for Babban’s attraction for Krishna, here Babban is helping Iftekhaar acquire his unrequited love for Begum Para. There’s an evolution in Babban’s growth in subtlety. The original flavour is retained, yet the flavours are left out to evolve.

Begum Para is a royal widow who has to crown a new king for her subjects and Iftekhaar lands up in lieu of dillagi. He has his underhanded ambitions, little does he know the queen has her own ambitions too. Jaan Mohammed (Vijay Raaz) will go to any extent to become the said king of Mahmoudabad. Babban reaches Mahmoudabad to get his Khaalu Jaan back with him.  Munira is Begum’s confidant, comforter and closest associate. Every character has murky waters surrounding them. The suspicion is thus born.

The organized celebration of selecting a new king for the queen has a wondrous mushaayara in Urdu, patented by the soft Nawabs of every remaining province. This is the foundation of the poetic theme to the film. Some poets pretending to be Nawabs, some pretending to be poets, some pretending everything. In this fantasyland, Babban teases Munira about having a iPhone 2 in the times of 5s. The Begum tells of a story about an neo-homoerotic king and handles her panic attacks with as much anxiety as a commoner. She charms her suitors with equal panache and class. Yet, she fraternizes with her lower-ly servant-cum-friend in her quarters with cheap rum. Munira knows what she wants from men, and it isn’t long-term smothering love.

The writers have sketched out such a colourful character palette that Setu’s brilliant photography blends hand-in-hand with. I started out this review by comparing this film with its predecessor and halfway down, I have concluded that Dedh Ishqiya is perhaps the greatest of all sequels made in Indian cinema. Shah’s gentle humility equates his innocuous playfulness. Arshad Warsi reprises his role with glorious fervour and infinite energy. Dixit has strong competition from all her co-actors and does she stand her ground like a resilient Rocky Balboa. I have a strong aftertaste of the film left in me, so much that I almost suffixed revering ji‘s to every actor’s name.

Vijay Raaz is handed over a rare role and he laps it up sharply. I am consciously avoiding anything about Huma Qureshi’s sexy balance between being all that she is in the film. She is the extra-joyful little girl after her first night with a new guy, she is the hugging consoler like a warm mother. And she is the calculative, smart modern woman. The plot avoids overbearing displays of physicality, but it uses silhouettes and beauteous subtle underplaying to put its point through.

One of the film’s subtle and most powerful messages is portrayed very gently and in minute detailing. For the sake of not letting out spoilers, I prefer not to divulge on it. Also, there’s a modern take on the “Pehle aap peehle aap mein train nikal gayi.” and a desi-Mexican-standoff that only ends in no bloodshed. Dedh Ishqiya’s original poetry, original plot devices and smart punches are just what could possibly take the Ishqiya franchise forward in the best way. I am absolutely in love with this film.

My rating: **** (4 out of 5) 

Jolly LLB

jolly-llb-poster
Jolly LLB
Release date: March 15, 2013
Directed by: Subhash Kapoor
Cast: Amrita Rao, Arshad Warsi, Boman Irani, Saurab Shukla, Manoj Pahwa, Mohan Kapoor

Jagdish Tyagi Jolly (Arshad Warsi) is a lawyer in a small district court of Meerut, Uttar Pradesh. His career is floundering  and he’s looking for ways to make it big. Soon he encounters another small time colleague getting mainstream media coverage for filing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL).

A hit and run case accused is let off and Advocate Rajpal (Boman Irani) is the savior for the typical rich boy. Jolly moves to Delhi for bigger prospects and explores the same PIL alternative for a chance at fame. Rajpal is an accomplished and snobbish bigshot who wears exemplary suits and sips whiskey while discussing cases.

Presented with a moral dilemma, catalyzed by a few plot devices, Jolly has to now make a decision if he’s going to fight for justice or for his earlier goal of attaining a formidable status. Amrita Rao plays the protagonist’s cute and supporting love interest, Sandhya. She’s a teacher in middle-school (that’s what I am guessing) and not hesitant to correct him.

Jolly LLB employs a great satirical theme which keeps you consistently entertained with its lines and quirky characters. Saurabh Shukla does his crony shtick finely with his burps and farts. The sequence where he finally takes a strong stance and asks Rajpal to “shut up” is specially hilarious. The two conventional song-and-dance numbers are short but not too relevant, perhaps placed to legitimize the film as a completely commercial venture.

The strengths of Jolly LLB are the realistic depiction of a court and the shady fake witness nexus with a much sophisticated connection, and the apathy of the law-holders and caretakers. The said apathy transcends into a few fairly ludicrous scenes, like where the judge asks the lying driver to get down on his knees in the court. Also the collective applauds at the end of Rajpal and Jolly’s ‘speeches’ inside the courtroom nullify the said realism.

Arshad Warsi does well in his underdog portrayal and Boman Irani is just the exact amount of smug and pompous for his character. But it’s not the monologues at the end that I object to, it is the placement of a fun-filled flashy promotional music video where all the actors do a red carpet dance juxtaposing the end credits that I feel is patchy and dampening to the mood of the climax. It’s almost as “Hey,  that was only a movie and now stop thinking about what we just delivered ‘cos we’re simply entertainers.”

Again, it is not the makers’ message that I have a beef with, it’s just the suddenly serious and similarly sudden laidback approach that I find not fitting. Jolly LLB is a good film with its own flaws, but it has a heart and you simply can’t resist being all smiles where the film flaunts its charm.

My rating: *** (3 stars out of 5)

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