Film: Happy Phirr Bhag Jayegi
Cast: Sonakshi Sinha, Jassie Gill, Diana Penty, Ali Fazal, Jimmy Shergill, Denzel Smith, Aparshakti Khurana, Piyush Mishra
Director: Mudassar Aziz
Rating: * * *
There’s Happy and there’s Happy and there’s Khushi – seems like Happy-ness too many, but Director Mudassar Aziz who tasted a whiff of success when he made Diana Penty as Happy, run-off to Pakistan, seems to have finally found a steady rhythm for his runaway comedy. This sequel about mistaken identities going the comedy of errors route is a side-splitting entertainer that mixes its punjabi tadka in Chinese sauce while mocking its goose for the gander.
The conceit in placing earthy punjabis in slickly ornamental and flimsy China while pitting them against Punjabi/Hindi speaking Chinese is a pataka of sorts. Accompanied by outlandish costuming, vibrant dialogues, perky songs, and vigorous performances – it’s quite inventive and inveigling, to say the least.
The plotline and narrative are neither clever nor intrinsically sustainable but the treatment and agile, well-timed performances by the cast are just right for this sort of a laugh-out-loud outing. This is a broad comedy that tends to entertaining, because of its innate silliness.
The original Happy (Diana Penty) and Guddu (Ali Fazal) embark on a performance tour to China, while the new Happy (a sulky Sonakshi) is in China ostensibly for a lecture tour, but has another secret agenda while Amritsar’s Corporation and frequently stood-up bridegroom Daman Singh Bagga (Jimmy Shergill) and retiring Pakistani Cop Usman Afridi (Piyush Mishra) find themselves packed off to China for reasons best known to the Chinese gangsters led by Mobster in Businessman clothing (Denzel Smith).
Neither the sassy xenophobic jokes nor the playful mocking of neighbouring countrymen seems out of place or in bad taste here. Jimmy Shergill and Piyush Mishra strike so many sparks off each other that there’s a virtual bombardment of entertaining asides here.
The writing is flush with wit and friendly combativeness and the narrative spiel picks up speed and momentum despite the fluffed up silliness of the endeavour. Jassie Gill plays his part well – as the unassuming Indian expat who is caught up in Happy’s messy world while Denzel Smith’s uproariously whacky villainy sets a high note for a new breed of comic-villains. This is a no holds barred laugh-out-loud entertainer!