Film: Phata Poster Nikla Hero

Rajkumar Santoshi

Cast: Shahid Kapoor, Ileana D'Cruz,  Padmini Kolhapure

Jagran Rating:

A romantic comedy, "Phata Poster Nikla Hero" has been directed by Rajkumar Santoshi, known for making serious action-dramas like "Ghayal" and "Damini" movies and fun films like "Andaz Apna Apna" (1994) and "Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani" (2009).

"Phata Poster Nikla Hero" will see Ileana D'Cruz teaming up with Shahid Kapoor for the first time on the big screen.

Made at the cost of Rs 40 crore, "Phata Poster Nikla Hero" may bring the much-awaited success for Shahid, whose past releases failed to create a buzz at the box office.

The film has been produced by Ramesh Taurani and will mark "Barfi" heroine Ileana's entry into Bollywood's commercial masala zone.

Story line:
The film follows the story of Vishwas Rao (Shahid Kapoor), an aspiring actor mistaken as a super cop. Rao is not a hero and is afraid of violence but he decides to go along with the ruse anyway which of course leads to plenty of amusement and the necessary twists and turns.

Rao is a long time staunch fan of Salman Khan. In one scene the stars have even worn a 'Being Human' t-shirt and in another scene, the character has gone to buy vegetables with his mother and his hands are full and he is eating a banana standing and watching the poster of 'Dabangg 2'." In the movie, Ileana D’Cruz plays Kaajal who is a self-appointed social worker. She is very talkative. She does not know where to stop. She is a little boisterous.  She finds problems in anything and everything around her and is hence addressed as 'Complaint Kajal'. Kaajal is the one that unintentionally drags Rao into pretending to be a real cop. Veteran actress Padmini Kolhapure plays Shahid’s (Vishwas) mother Savitri, who wants her son to become a policewala. This desire of mother makes Rao pretend a fake cop.  Between this twists and turns, there are lots of dhishoom-dhishoom and loads of laughter.

Review: Let's get one thing straight. This isn't what you want to see a super-gifted filmmaker like Rajkumar Santoshi do when he gets together with a talented star-actor like Shahid Kapoor.

But what to do? Everyone wants a good laugh! It makes us forget about the troubles outside. Never mind the trouble that humour seems to encounter on screen each time someone makes a comedy.

To his credit, Santoshi deftly delivers the dynamics of drollery. No two ways about it. Unlike last week's lewd laughter in "Grand Masti", "Phata Poster Nikla Hero" (PPNH) avoids vulgarity like the plague.

Dirty word plague....sorry wordplay is firmly eschewed. What we get is an earthy robust over-accentuated tribute to Salman Khan's Chulbul Pandey act from "Dabangg", with Shahid Kapoor stepping into the khaki uniform with the same wonky elan as our dear Chulbul Khan.

Come to think of it, PPNH is not even an all-out zany comedy of errors like Santoshi's 'Andaz Apna Apna'. So what is it? After painful pondering over the over-punctuated parodic material in PPNH, we think it's a mongrelized mirth machine. A sort of "Dabangg" mated with Santoshi's last very successful comedy "Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani" which evidently taught Santoshi a lesson: farcical frivolity and lengthy titles translate into big bucks.

"Phata Poster..." gives poster-boy Shahid Kapoor a custom-built opportunity to get seriously comic. He digs deep into the very slim plot, ferreting out meager meat from the skimpy material. I must think that Shahid has a ball doing the droll act for the doll Ileana d'Cruz who abandons her serious sari-clad audacious wife's role in "Barfi!" to play the kind of "social worker" who brings a bad name to all charity work.

Didn't Katrina play a similar busybee's role in Santoshi's "Ajab Prem..."? Didn't Ranbir do the goofy Chaplin-meets-Kondke act for the commodious camera in that film? Shahid seems comfortable doing the irrepressible comic impresario. But he's far more at home in the more sensible sober scenes he shares with his screen-mom Padmini Kolhapure, who looks too young to play Shahid's mom. But then at least her talent is being aired.

Stars’ speak

Actor Shahid Kapoor will be seen essaying the character of an aspiring actor in the action-comedy.

"Just like my character Vishwas Rao says in the film, 'ek din mere bhi bade bade poster lagengey', I also used to have such dreams before becoming an actor and me too used to think 'me too will have such huge huge posters' (mere bhi ek din itne bade bade poster lagengey)," Shahid said in an interview.

Shahid says his character in the film is a fan of Bollywood star Salman Khan, who has also done a cameo in the movie. The actor has confessed it is easy to play a Salman Khan fan. The young actor who has so far not revealed his comic chops and has in fact shown dramatic synergy to be his forte, pulls out all stops to play an imposter cop, a role that makes him a Chulbul Pandey twice-over because Salman's cop-act was underlined as a spoof in the first place.

"There's a little scene in the film where Salman sir is there...Salman sir was kind enough to do a special appearance in the film," the 32-year-old said

Applauding the dancing skills of Shahid, actress Ileana D'Cruz says, “Dancing with Shahid is very difficult. I used to get so nervous. I think, Shahid is very quick while dancing. It was difficult to match steps with him.”

Talking about her role in the film, Veteran actress Padmini Kolhapure said, "I am playing Shahid's mother in the film who wants her son to be a police officer but her son wants to be an actor. It’s a full-fledged comedy film."

If you think Shahid is one of the more interesting star-actor's of the current generation, then PPNH is a frenetically fashioned farce fest with excessive energy oozing out of every saturated pore. Shahid's songs and dances, especially the zanily unpredictable "Agal bagal" number are the highlight of the humour-hamper. And that's not such a good thing. Shahid gets to share camera space with some accomplished actors like Saurabh Shukla, Mukesh Tiwari, Darshan Jariwala and Sanjay Mishra. And that's a good thing.

At least we are ensured that the slender pretext for laughter is bolstered by hefty actors.Oh yes, and the real Salman Khan shows up.

JPN/Agencies (Video Courtesy: Mid-Day)

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