Friday, May 04, 2012

Jannat 2 

Hell Is Other People

If random clips of several Emraan Hashmi films were screened, you probably wouldn’t be able to identify the films—particularly those from the Vishesh Films stable. He starts as cocky and amoral, goes through a crisis and there’s anguish to express, sometimes redemption too.

Jannat 2 can be watched with a checklist. Criminally inclined, debauched protagonist (tick), cop with a trauma to heal, (tick), babein-the-woods girl (tick), loyal friend (tick), demented villain (tick);  love redeems the bad protagonist (tick), Pritam’s Wohoho kind of pseudo-Sufi romantic songs (tick)... and so on.

Kunal Deshmukh stays true to the formula, only the action shifts to Delhi, which seems to be the hottest Bollywood destination these days.  It goes well with the machismo of the lead characters—the drinking, swearing, shooting, wheeling-dealing.  Instead of the slums and narrow gullies of Mumbai, the chase sequences can be over roofs, through spacious dargahs and wide streets. 

Sonu Dilli KKC (Hashmi) is a small-time gun runner, proud of his emotionless existence—anyone who has seen the promos knows what KKC stands for.  And he is a KKC till he falls in love with doctor Janvi (Esha Gupta--expressionless), who is too stupid to see him for the boor that he is and falls right back, because he propositions her directly.  ACP Pratap (Randeep Hooda—suitably intense), whose wife was shot dead, is on a personal mission to wipe out the trade in illegal weapons, and picks on Sonu to be his informer.

Sonu infiltrates the gang, wins over the boss Mangal Tomar (Manish Chaudhary), whose purpose in life is to prove that Indian-made revolvers are as good as the foreign ones (seriously!) 

Pratap and Sonu look startlingly alike—bearded, unwashed,  crude, mostly drunk, driven and living on the edge.  After a point the relationship they share has more substance that Sonu’s life-changing passion for Janvi.

Even though the plot is clichéd and predictable (anyone can guess who Janvi’s estranged father will be, anyone can guess who the mole in the police force will be), Deshmukh keeps a grip on the narrative and only lets the pace flag towards the end.  The dark ambience, the profanity laden dialogue will ensure that the film will be a hit with lowlife males who make up a bulk of single screen audiences and Hashmi fans—they hoot  the loudest when he flirts with the girl and of course, the kiss has to be there too.


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