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'Welcome Back' review: Mayhem and Mirth!

'Welcome Back' review: Mayhem and Mirth!

Source: Sify

Friday 4 September 2015

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Movie Title

Welcome Back

Director

Anees Bazmee

Star Cast

Anil Kapoor, Nana Patekar, Dimple Kapadia

Welcome back to the world where logic, sense, and even sensibility is absent, and rather proudly so. Indeed, you must leave all these aspects your good selves behind to survive this spectacle of a film, and perhaps even enjoy it.

Welcome Back is an unrepentantly loud mess from the word go. But what works is its penchant for unabashed fun that gladly defies logic. Where else would you find a couple of buffoony gangsters playing antakshari with supposed ghosts and a character hopping atop camels to save someone's life. Even more absurdly, where would you find a girl whom her family, boyfriend and assorted characters toss around like a football, with her never having a say in who she'll marry.

But then this film is not supposed to make sense. It's supposed to show you a good time, which it intermittently does. And that's thanks to the veterans here, who are irresistibly fun and charming! The film rests on their able shoulders, and therefore sails through.

Nana Patekar and Anil Kapoor return as the reformed gangsters Uday Shetty and Majnu Bhai. They're still the same middle-aged clowns yearning to marry, and deciding whether their decision to reform was a good one or not. Turns out, Majnu is certain it was a bad decision, while Uday, who still loads a gun in his head, is "confused".

The two run a large hotel in Dubai now, and often have these conversations, much to our amusement. They rue the kind of people that get married (their staff), while moping on when they'll find the right woman.

And that happens when a bikini-clad girl (Ankita) catches the attention of both. Like in the last installment Welcome (2007), both of them fall in love with the same girl and compete to win her over. This ho-hum situation is saved by Dimple Kapadia's character, who claims to be the queen of a small town.

Before you can say 'what next', there are a dozen characters introduced, like Uday's sister (Shruti Haasan) and a street ruffian (John Abraham).

Paresh Rawal reprises his role as the "shareef" Dr. Ghungroo, whose morality is rather questionable in this film.

The hyperbolic madness intensifies in the second half, when Naseeruddin Shah arrives as an "island-owning" mafia don with his druggie son (Shiney Ahuja).

It is the veterans that are watchable in the film, rather than the young guns. John beats up the baddies and takes off his shirt. Shruti Haasan's job is to look befuddled and helpless. The two sing songs against the worst backdrops imaginable (malls, ugly signboards, shanties).

The humour, too, relies on the mastery of these experienced performers. Nana Patekar is flawless as the confused Uday Shetty who's really a softie under the tough veneer. Ditto Anil Kapoor who's immensely amusing as the wealthy hotel owner, who still wears cheap perfume from Bhendi Bazaar. And their bromance, with its share of altercations, is the best part of the film! Dimple Kapadia is super-fun as the "queen", dressed in velvets, diamonds and pearls, and hiding a secret.

The humour sifts between the mainly hare-brained comedy to rare slices of dark humour (note a character, having killed a man and digging a hole to bury him, missing India's already dug-up roads). True, most of the comedy is juvenile, but the few sparkling lines spoken by the senior cast is priceless.

The film checks all the boxes of an Anees Bazmee film- from the blindingly ostentatious songs, inane romance, the cars blowing up, highly improbable situations and an overblown drama-filled finale (in this case, we have explosive toy helicopters).

This constantly hyperbolic film- at all times- is loud, unsubtle and silly. What makes up for this mayhem is the super-cool senior ensemble cast- Nana Patekar, Anil Kapoor, Dimple Kapadia, Paresh Rawal and Naseeruddin Shah. It is these masterful actors that put the mirth in this mayhem!

Rating: 3 stars

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