Star Cast: Ajay Devgn, Riteish Deshmukh, Arshad Warsi, Anil Kapoor, Madhuri Dixit Nene, Jaaved Jaaferi, Sanjay Mishra, Vijay Patkar, Boman Irani
Director: Indra Kumar
What’s Good: The nostalgia that takes you back to one of the best comedies – Dhamaal, very few one-liners that actually make you laugh
What’s Bad: Forced humour, the efforts put in trying to make you laugh all time, very wrong sketching of new characters (and Riteish Deshmukh)
Loo Break: Just take a break and get lost in the good and funny world out there!
Watch or Not?: There’s a difference between lame and naive, Total Dhamaal lies exactly in the centre of both. Skip if you get annoyed too soon by nonsense.
We see Pintu (Manoj Pahwa) giving directions to half the dozen of people for a treasure worthy of 50 crores hidden in Janakpur. For those who are new to this franchise, that basic plot is similar, it’s just the makers (don’t know why) decide to go chaotic this time. Guddu (Ajay Devgn) and Johnny (Sanjay Mishra) are con-artists who set their eyes first on the reward. They are joined by a couple Avinash (Anil Kapoor) and Bindu (Madhuri), a brother duo Adi (Arshad Warsi) and Maanav (Jaaved Jaaferi) and a fireman Lallan (Riteish Deshmukh).
All of them come to the conclusion of whoever reaches and gets to the treasure first, wins it. Now, as expected, there come a lot of hurdles in between. Out of those problems, one is the police commissioner (Boman Irani) who also wants the piece of the cake. On reaching the Zoo, they have one more claimer in Chinappa Swami (Mahesh Manjrekar). The rest of madness belongs to who will get to the treasure first going through the wild animals in the zoo.
Total Dhamaal Movie Review: Script Analysis
In 2007, back to the simpler times, Indra Kumar gifted us with a comedy that became cult classic over time. Double Dhamaal (2011) was doubly forgettable. Is Total Dhamaal as bad as its last instalment? No. But, there’s no improvement as far as the fun element is concerned. After a lazily choreographed Paisa Paisa in the start, there are some genuinely funny moments in the first half.
The problem with the script is, it’s never stable. The jokes (most of them compiled straight from Whatsapp) come in large quantities but many of them misfire. It also fails because of focusing more on stars (Ajay, Anil and Madhuri) and sidelining the original cast of the film (Arshad, Jaaved and Riteish). The only funny moments in the film are because of its retained members. Dhamaal is still remembered for its drop-till-you-are-dead-laughing sequences (Vijay Raaz’s aeroplane sequence being one of them). But Total Dhamaal has none such scenes (one, maybe).
Total Dhamaal Movie Review: Star Performance
The film starts with introducing stars first but I’ll go with those who made Dhamaal possible. Jaaved Jaaferi retains his innocence but unfortunately gets extremely dull dialogues. It’s just because of his presence, his character shines in some scenes. Arshad Warsi, same as the film, is funny in parts. He gets few good dialogues to mouth and justifies by his liveliness.
Riteish Deshmukh is wasted. From the word go, you just cannot connect with his character. Don’t know what the makers were smoking for giving him a character shift when his Roy (Dhamaal, Double Dhamaal) was outstanding. Ajay Devgn, literally, has nothing to do with the script. His character is very shabbily written, I’m wondering what made him say yes to this film. Anil Kapoor and Madhuri Dixit, too, were just for the sake of an upgrade. Their characters do nothing but shame each other because of their failing marriage.
After 67, I lost the count of how many times Sanjay Mishra uses the word ‘bro’, why bro? Even he doesn’t get anything worth mentioning. Mahesh Manjrekar and Johnny Lever are good in their cameos.
Total Dhamaal Movie Review: Direction, Music
Indra Kumar maintains his record of ruining franchises after good first films (Masti and Dhamaal). He has just lost his touch and the humour is not funny anymore. Even the direction is pretty abrupt backing on the tacky VFX. It seems like a rushed project because of very naive writing and script.
The less I talk about the songs, the better. Background score is good in certain portions but on the whole, nothing remarkable.
Total Dhamaal Movie Review: The Last Word
All said and done, Total Dhamaal is a strictly one-time watch and that too on television. If you loved Dhamaal, skip this and if you liked Double Dhamaal, watch this. A classic case of too many cooks spoil the broth!
Total Dhamaal Trailer
Total Dhamaal releases on 22nd February, 2019.
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