Punjabi cinema opens post the lockdown with Puaada, and it does make you laugh and smile, giving a fairly good time in the theatre as an above-average attempt. That’s the good news associated with the film, along with the fact that it is yet again a comedy made on the set routine format of Punjabi cinema.
Hence, if you don’t mind watching a typical Punjabi venture based on a thin and forced comic plot, with a mix of both loud and likable performances, then Puaada will not disappoint. It begins in a familiar manner, introducing the characters of two families and their friends, but takes too long to reveal its key plot. The situational comedy largely works because of its well-written dialogues and lead performances by Ammy Virk and Sonam Bajwa.
Continuing from where she left in her last few projects, Puaada (meaning a big mess of problems), can easily be called a Sonam Bajwa film along with Ammy Virk. The talented and gorgeous girl remains the soul of its entire narration, superbly complemented by Ammy playing the role of a simpleton village milk vendor. The couple together brightens up the screen and remains the reason many loud and overdone performances in the supporting cast get overlooked.
Following the set format, the film has a lazy start with many forced sequences and the twist coming quite late heading towards a stretched climax, where everyone is following the other in a seen before manner. This is in fact a template set by the hugely successful Carry on Jatta. The crime element casually incorporated in the script is not convincing, but it still works because of the dialogues and two impressive lead performances. Repeating an age-old common mistake of Punjabi cinema, the background score is too loud that constantly keeps trying to maintain the comic feel with all typical sounds right from the word go. Plus a few catchy songs are added just for the sake of it as a mandatory need of the project.
To be honest, Puaada, directed by Rupinder Chahal, is going to be a fairly entertaining film for the audience (who don’t mind watching a similar comedy yet again) along with becoming a profit-making venture for its makers. But it doesn’t take Punjabi cinema any further, either in its making, presentation, or content. That also remains the reason Punjabi cinema is stuck, not progressing for last many years even after making a significant breakthrough in mainstream cinema overcoming the old barriers.
For instance, the story writers of Punjabi films mostly write remaining in the awe of Hindi cinema, also borrowing the key ideas from their films. Working with the same mindset, Puaada has also been conceived taking its basic plot from Ram Gopal Varma produced Darwaza Bandh Rakho released in 2006, in which a few goons are hiding an abducted girl in an apartment and they keep letting everyone pressing the bell to enter the house resulting in an overcrowded mess. In Puaada, they have used the same idea as terrorists coming from the other side of the border, clashing with the families of the lead couple.
In all, the film does provide an above-average or decent two hours of entertainment, but offering nothing fresh, novel or outstanding with Sonam-Ammy remaining the key attraction.
Film: Puaada (Punjabi)
Cast: Ammy Virk, Sonam Bajwa, Hardeep Gill
Director: Ruipnder Chahal
Where: Theatres near you
Rating: 3 Stars
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