No Big Deol

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 09 Sep 2017 10:30:38

By Aasawari Shenolikar

Bollywood has given us back to back movies which venture into ‘below the belt’ territory. But while one deserves all the accolades for its insightful handling of a sensitive subject, the other is loud, crass and tries hard to evoke laughter. Last week’s Shubh Mangal Savdhaan merits a pat on its back for its perceptive treatment of ‘gents’ problem’ erectile dysfunction, this week’s Poster Boys dealing with vasectomy is a study in contrast. Shreyas Talpade’s debut directorial venture, a remake of the Marathi Poshter Boyz, ropes in the Deol brothers - Sunny and Bobby to play pivotal roles. Talpade, himself plays the third poster boy.

Sunny, a retired soldier is smitten by his mobile and doesn’t let go of any opportunity to pout for a selfie. Bobby is a school teacher, who, after every third line forgets what he is teaching. Father to two cute girls and a screechy wife yearning for a boy, he is a timid fellow. Talpade is the go getter - a recovery agent, who is flashy and flamboyant. His two sidekicks cheer each act of his from the side wings. The trio come together for a joint purpose. They find that they have become the poster boys of an advertisement of Health Department that promotes nasbandi. In a small village, this situation gets out of hand and takes on gargantuan proportions. Not only do the trio find themselves in an embarrassing situation, the families also start shunning them and questioning their move; an engagement is broken and Talpade’s would be father-in-law warns him to stay away from his daughter. After bashing each suspected culprit, they finally decide to take on the Health Department. The only way truth will prevail is if the Government is taken to Court. The fight begins. But the government is mightier than the collective mettle of the trio. What steps will the troubled trio take so that the higher ups will sit up and take notice of their plight?

Corny dialogues like ‘meter ka connection katwa diya’ is sure to work wonders for the front benchers, who will show their appreciation through ceetis and taalis. Unfortunately, in multiplexes, there are hardly any front benchers to revel in such crass comedy which when not using hackneyed humour (Shaadi ke pehle tum bomb lagti thi aur ab? Any guesses for the answer - Atom Bomb - clichéd, done to death line), for added effect, brings into play dialogues from Sunny Deol’s previous films - you all know these - Dhaai kilo ka haath, Tareekh pe tareekh. The writers, for more humour, didn’t forget to add dollops of distorted English - ‘I telled you’ - Seriously?!! This, for me and scores like me, is not humour. It definitely does not bring on a smile, let alone guffaws and chuckles. The only time a semblance of a smile creased my face was during Ashwini Kalsekar's Doctor act. That, was a class apart in this otherwise banal film.

What was good was to see Sunny after a long hiatus - in all his glory - creases and all. For once he did not spew fire in every scene. That was a relief. For with Shreyas and Bobby’s loud act, this would have been too much to bear. All the other characters also added their own bit to this screech-fest. You don’t have to be loud to be funny - directors/writers please take a leaf out of the many comic acts on the telly which have the audiences ROFL.

The serious issue of vasectomy gets buried in the gags. The preachy tone that the narrative adopts in the climax is exasperating. Na le panga, andolan nanga - that’s the sensationalism the trio resort to in the end to catch the attention of the public and the government. But because the censor board has given it a U certificate, the nanga andolan doesn’t go beyond the ‘taking off the shirt’ routine. Sunny Deol fans will be disappointed, because what he does is simply take off his jacket and whirl it into the crowd. That is because then he has to go on national television, with the Chief Minister and talk of population explosion and how vasectomy is the only way to control the burgeoning rise of humans on the planet.  Sunny paaji.. the angry young man with the dhai kilo ka haath - padha liya vasectomy ka paath, but kitne denge saath?

The Hitavada Rating: O