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Bajatey Raho review: A comedy with a seen-it-before feel

Bajatey Raho
Sushant Shah
Vinay Pathak, Tusshar kapoor, Ranvir Shorey, Ravi Kishan, Dolly Ahluwalia, Vishakha Singh, Kamlesh Gill
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Get this. A slimy bank boss (Ravi Kissen) entangles his employees in a fraud case. Mr Baweja and Ms Hasan are to be jailed, but Baweja passes away, unable to bear his tarnished reputation.

With a police case and court orders to repay the investors their money, Baweja's wife whom everyone calls Mummyji (Dolly Ahluwalia) spearheads a plan to raise the 15 crore.

Like in that classic hit Khosla Ka Ghosla, the idea is to steal from the thief. So the gang (Tusshar Kapoor, Ranvir Shorey, Vinay Pathak-- in short the KKG cast) set about planning how to trick the money out of Sabharwal. A kid called Kabootar (an unnecessary addition and made to act older than his age) also forms a part of the group.

So now it's payback time. We see the gang in various fancy dress avatars fooling the money out of their villain.

Meanwhile, Sabharwal is making deals of another kind. He's offering a 15-crore-dowry, European honeymoon etc, for his daughter's wedding to another slime-ball family.

This open display of dowry give and take is unsettling, even if true. And Sabharwal's daughter doesn't have it in her to protest the marriage, even when her groom (who refers to himself in the third person) refuses to sit at the mandap unless he's given the cash.

Yes, the film had potential but turns into the kind of film where a romantic development immediately leads to a song. An item song is insinuated into a party set-up (true of certain Delhi weddings, I hear).

The all's well ending is all too abrupt and implausible.

The Delhi tadka is not a novelty anymore. It's the same old -- characters named like toddlers (in this case- Sukhi, Mintoo, Ballu), characters speaking wrong English for laughs ("Oh my gods") and that distinctive dialoguebaazi in the North Indian twang (sahi bandi, isse kainde hain 'class').

For comedy, you have the cliche of making fun of a flashy Mata ki Chowki (adapting party song 'Subah Hone Na De' in this case). Admittedly it still manages to crack you up. Then you have gross scenes (with accompanying sound) of Ravi Kissen wolfing down lunch.

The cast is superb -- I mean it has the best ensemble for a comedy film. Dolly Ahluwalia is a riot and easily the best part about the film. Brijendra Kala (seen as the reporter in Paan Singh Tomar) is also outstanding.

Director Shashant Shah makes a film that has a seen-it-before feel. There's nothing innovative or new here. One liked the director's last film (Challo Dilli) much better.

This is simply a weaker version of Khosla Ka Ghosla and countless other 'Delhi' films.

I'd say watch it for Dolly Ahluwalia, but you'd have to endure the rest of the film with it. Do the math.

Rating: Two and a half stars


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