Mogambo Khush Hua!
An India-Pakistan encounter that does not involve terrorists or silly politicians or bad-mouthing ‘them’? Never thought it was possible. But writer-director Mudassar Aziz manages that and offers us a funny story on a runaway bride, harried cops, silly cops, ambitious fathers, arranged marriages, and so much more… Mostly predictable, but delightful nonetheless.
A bride to be, jumps out of the bathroom window into a truck. And instead of reaching the boyfriend, the truck takes her to Pakistan and into the house of a young politician who’d rather be a cricketer. She’s feisty, he’s fed up of the fact that she could cause an international incident that could cause embarrassment for his dad, a seasoned politician.
There is a jilted bridegroom, an angry father, a silly lover, even sillier goons, a mamu who tries to help, a pretty girl who loves the young politician, a comedic sidekick cop, and a band of silly bad guys too.
Confused? Don’t be. This is a truly funny India-Pakistan comedy without calling ‘them’ bad and proving that ‘we’ are good and upright. In fact, this movie is has been written so well, a telephone exchange between the sidekick cop (Piyush Mishra) and the young politician (played wonderfully by Abhay Deol) earns two stars on it own. Plus half a star for taking the most obvious references and happily using them to name the cast. For example, ‘Rifat Bee’ from Kuch Kuch Hota Hai is the housekeeper in this film, Piyush Mishra plays Usman Afridi (there will be a joke about being related to the cricketer, of course!), Pakistani actor Momal Sheikh plays Zoya, a name you will remember from the Pakistani serial Dhoop Kinare…
Abhay Deol sparkles in the role of a young politician who is attracted to the runaway bride. He wears his clothes really well and he looks the part of dignity in the middle of all the mayhem. Diana Penty is not exactly known for her histrionics but she manages to hold her own. Every character, from Abhay Deol’s mamu (actor Jagat Rawat who appears as the heroine’s dad in a TV show called Kuch Rang Pyar Ke Aise Bhi), to Rifat Bee to the silly gangsters who kidnap the bride are well cast and play their parts very well. Yes, the comedy does veer to the slapstick, but you don’t hate it at all.
That brings us to Jimmy Sheirgill. He’s perfected the role of a jilted bridegroom so many times, he could have sleepwalked through this role. But he doesn’t. He’s a delight to watch, even when you know he’s going to lose the girl.
Again, you come away wishing that there was a fully filmi Bollywood ending, but the happily ever after does make you feel good.
(this review appears on nowrunning dot com)