It is heartening when Bollywood tries a comic-caper. They hit gold with Hera Pheri once upon a time and ever since the capacity to churn out another such seems terribly depleted. Rajkumar Gupta who gave us Aamir and No One Killed Jessica, should have known that Ghanchakkar is not up his alley.
The basic plot of Ghanchakkar is terribly simple. Sanju (Emraan Hashmi) helps Idris (Namit Das) and Pandit (Rajesh Sharma) in a bank heist. The loot is kept with Sanju. After a few months when Pandit and Idris arrive to split the booty, Sanju claims to have lost his memory and has no clue where the money is. Suspecting a scam, Pandit and Idris decide to move in with Sanju and his ludicrously loud wife Neetu (Vidya Balan) and chaos ensues.
While the film moves at a decent pace for a while the plot soon splutters, chokes and puts on this dead speed that becomes irritating. By the second half - all sense of sanity lies suspended and the same old jokes and the same old one-liners get you supremely bored.
The problem perhaps lies in the fact that the characters are terribly uni-dimensional and unfortunately Gupta keeps playing that card over and over again. While there isn’t a problem with ‘flat’ characters, they should ideally be explored just like that - on the surface. One cannot be expected to understand the inner turmoils of such a character. Neetu, Sanju, Idris and Pandit -fall into that trap.
Balan plays her role as honestly as she is expected to but sadly for her - loud, Punjabi housewife is not something on the ‘acting to-do list’ that she can quite tick off yet. Hashmi on the other hand does a better job. Both Rajesh Sharma and Namit Das have not been ‘used’ well enough.
Ghanchakkar seems like a mess after some time. You want a comic caper - watch Hera Pheri. Bollywood not your thing? Watch Lock, Stock and Two smoking Barrels.
The movie had too many promotions that had us cringing at Balan’s ugly clothes. Unfortunately it misses the mark. You can watch it if you have no expectation from the actors what so ever. But with actors of such mettle - it is just unfortunate that such a bumbling mess of a movie has come to be.
Be different - but don’t be irritating.