Film: Fukrey Returns
Cast: Ali Zafar, Pulkit Samrat, Varun Sharma and Manjot Singh, Richa Chadha, Vishakha
Director: Mrigdeep Singh Lamba
Rating: * * *
The 2013-released film Fukrey may have been a small-time money spinner at the Box-office but it never really got off to a full charge and it wasn’t as much of a laugh riot as expected. This one though, makes most of its madcap shenanigans work in its favour even though they are as stupid as it can get and unjustifiable in its contrivances and totally ludicrous in its play-up.
This slapstick, bawdy, exaggerated dilliwala-attitude-heavy comedy gets off to a slowish start, a year later, with Bholi Punjaban (Richa Chadha) scheming to get out of prison and get her hands on the four idiots who landed her there- Choocha (Varun Sharma), Honey (Pulkit Samrat), Zafar (Ali Fazal) and Lali (Manjot Singh).
It’s a familiar set-up and there’s nothing new going on here. It’s basically a rewind where Bholi Punjaban gets back into the act of getting her money out of yet another wild fantastic transaction from the game foursome who are back in the business of churning out winning lottery numbers based on Choocha’s crazy premonitions. Panditji (Pankaj Tripathi) and CM aspirant Babulal Bhatia (Rajiv Gupta) along with Bholi Punjaban’s two Nigerian Sidekicks round up the escapade that goes wild and gets merrier as we go along.
The writing manages to be sly and imaginative even though the set-up is hopelessly contrived and far-fetched to boot. The comedy though is expressive and irrepressible. It’s coarse and scurrilous no doubt yet it has strong entertainment value. And it’s all Varun Sharma and Pankaj Tripathi’s doing.
They play off each other, spinning amusing wit and adlibbing along the way while getting us all tickled up over their sly asides, plying their lewdness with irrepressible vigour and heft. That’s not to say the other players are far behind in attitude. Richa Chadha exhibits much more energy and verve than she does in her usual arty ventures while Pulkit Samrat, Manjot Singh, Rajiv Gupta, the girls and the Nigereans make their presence felt with assertive performances.
Director Mrigdeep Singh Lamba is also far more assured and deft in his handling of the material. Peppy musical insertions and an upbeat background alchemy energise the experience further. The original film did not manage to get as many laughs as this one does and that is reason enough to make this an all-out no-holds-barred entertainer!