Directed by Subhash Kapoor
Produced by Sangeeta Ahir
Written by Subhash Kapoor
Starring Ronit Roy, Arshad Warsi, Amit Sadh, Aditi Rao Hydari
Music by Songs: Amit Trivedi; Background Score: Hitesh Sonik
Cinematography Jamie Fowlds
Edited by Arindam Ghatak
Subhash Kapoor carries certain gravity with his name. You should remember him as the wisely witty and responsibly engaging filmmaker behind PHAS GAYE RE OBAMA– a hilarious take on Global Recession and JOLLY LLB– another satirical drama on Indian Judiciary System. The fact that he’s been chosen to replace Raju Hirani and direct the next in the MUNNA BHAI series itself says a lot about the man. Sadly, his latest GUDDU RANGEELA despite having all his trademarks fails miserably to impress, or even entertain at large to match that extended expectations.
Full-time Orchestra singers and small-time criminals Guddu [Amit Sadh] and Rangeela [Arshad Warsi] find themselves trapped in a ‘kidnapping gone wrong’ case but what’s hidden in the box, has also an opportunity they have been looking for almost a decade. Their counterpart Billu Pehalwan [Ronit Roy] is a local MLA and a hardcore supporter-admirer and motivator of Khap Panchayats. Honor-killing is just one of his favorite leisure activities.
GUDDU RANGEELA decides to talk about social filths of many sorts but doesn’t showcase guts to provide sensible solutions or a definite way out in any manner. In fact, it doesn’t think twice before turning a potential social-drama into a personal revenge-saga. Khap Panchayats can be as heartless, harsh and cold-blooded as anyone could think of. We all are sentient to the Manoj-Babli honor killing case; but this is no real world. Looks like Subhash Kapoor believes in having the cake and eating it too. The reel world’s Manoj and Babli conveniently escape the bloody fate to be able to walk the road to the bazaar-demanding happy end. The writing and the jokes are strictly average, though the twist in the first half is well-executed. Film loses its steam completely when starts settling all this with a dramatic climax on the lines of any action movie from 80’s.
Raju Hirani is known to bring interesting still images on screen that has already been successful in filling your heart with joy. Remember, the passing shot of a man clicking a bunch of women all clad in Burkha from head to toe, in 3 IDIOTS? Mr. Kapoor too tries it with the most colorful visual in the film, of Saadhus playing football in the yard of a temple. In others, Achint Kaur plays a new-age Chief Minister enjoying her chewing gum while showing off her strength and force in the character. The coolest, I say! And then there is this intrepid scene where Guddu unapologetically asks Baby [Aditi Rao Hydari], “Degi?” without giving any shady explanation. I like it! I wish GUDDU RANGEELA would have had more and more of such differently able scenes, and not just some lame, age-old and tasteless jokes to cover-up.
Arshad Warsi is repeating himself big time, I’m telling you. His ISHQIYA days are still here. And he is hardly able to level it with whatever he’s getting to play. Amit Sadh tries his hard to give us a believable Haryanvi character but the efforts overshadow the talent. Ronit Roy despite having a one-dimensionally written part manages to pull out very well. He never goes off-track, neither in his attitude nor in the lingual detailing. Of the rests, Rajeev Gupta as the Sub-inspector tickles you the most.
At last, with the kind of metaphors and affection Subhash Kapoor uses in GUDDU RANGEELA, it sure can be seen as his SHOLAY mashed with the sensitivity towards some real bad social impurities. But not in a perfect measure!
Written By- Gaurav Rai