Fukrey: Uncontrollable laughter guaranteed!

Published: June 24, 2013

While the film follows the tried and tested mix of several directors, Fukrey neither bores the audience, nor does it seem repetitive. PHOTO: PUBLICITY

Indra Kumar followed a simple formula for success  back in the 90s. Typically, the first half of his films would be based on comedy, while the second half would be a tear jerker.

David Dhawan followed a similar approach in some of his films. Additionally films like Dil, Ishq and Shola aur Shabnam were along the same lines. Karan Johar with his Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham improvised on the same formula. We can find similarities with Priyadarshan’s brand of humor as well. Then, on the turn of the millennium, Raju Hirani took this method to a whole new level. In both his Munna Bhai films as well as in 3 Idiots, Raju took the audience through an emotional roller coaster ride where there was no plausible interval between comic sequences and emotional drama. One moment, his audience would be laughing non-stop and the next moment they would be overcome by heartfelt sentiment.

Mrigdeep Singh Lamba’s Fukrey has mirrored the style established by Raju Hirani. There are multiple moments in the film where you have not fully recovered from your laughter when a new development in the story leaves your mind reeling with emotion. Having said that, like the predecessors of this method, Fukrey is  primarily a comedy film, something like Delhi Belly with a Punjabi touch.

Fukrey revolves around four guys, not necessarily friends, but trapped together in some interesting (read: tricky) situations. Humor ensues and they eventually conquer the challenges faced, predictably so. While the basic premise has nothing new to offer, it is the underlying tones in the script and treatment of the screenplay that distinguish the film. Fukrey does not offer a perfect protagonist like ‘Rancho’ of 3 Idiots. To the contrary, the heroes are weak individuals  looking for shortcuts in life. They have no money, they can’t study and they are willing to cheat their way into a college admission.

While the film follows the tried and tested mix of several directors, Fukrey neither bores the audience, nor does it seem repetitive.

The charm of Fukrey is boosted by its committed cast. The characters are detailed and fun. ‘Bholi Punjaban’, for example, carries a dappled personality: she is narcissistic and foul-mouthed with a ‘Sindrella’ tattoo on her neck. Meanwhile, the college watchman ‘Pandit’ - a kind, soft spoken yet corrupt guy, leaks exam papers, seeking backdoor registration for unqualified students in exchange for money. Both Richa Chadda and Pankaj Tripathi have handled their roles splendidly. Seeing Richa in a purely comic role after her intense acting in Gangs of Wasseypur was a joy. Similarly, Pankaj Triptahi’s role was a complete contrast to his performance in Gangs of Wasseypur, showing his adaptability as an actor.

The four protagonists of the film are also well-selected. While Ali Fazal as ‘Zafar’ is relatively unimpressive, the other three leads are hilarious. Pulkit Samrat, being the smart wizard, reminds you of ‘Amar’ from Andaz Apna Apna or ‘Raju’ of Hera Pheri – good at heart but willing to make easy money through shady means. Pulkit’s comic timing is spectacular and his chemistry with ‘Choocha’ is excellent. ‘Choocha’ on the other hand is a cross between ‘Zach Galfianikis’ of Hangover and ‘Babu Bhaiyya’ of Hera Pheri. He is spectacular when it comes to dreaming the lottery results but a certified idiot in all other respects. Still, he surprises you when it comes to his survival instincts. His scenes with Richa Chadda are utterly hilarious. Manjot Singh is also enjoyable in his role as ‘Sardar Ji’. He portrays a nice guy who does not want to charge people who eat at his father’s shop yet wishes for admission into a college without having to study for it. He swears that he will teach a lesson to his cheating girlfriend but ends up waving and smiling at her.

In the first fifteen minutes of the film, I thought that Fukrey will offer several smiles but fall short of making me laugh. I spent the next hour and a half laughing uncontrollably at the characters’ antics. I highly recommended watching Fukrey!

Read more by Sami here, or follow him on Twitter @SamiSaayer

sami.saayer

Sami Saayer

A Dubai based Pakistani looking for excuses to write.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Anshuman Tripathy

    This review was spot on. I was expecting a forgettable time-pass flick when I walked into the theatre but this movie was worth every penny. Absolutely Hilarious. Another brilliant movie released last week, Ranjhnaa. Dhanush proves that you don’t need good looks to make it big in Bollywood, he absolutely stole the show. The movie has done tremendous business as well. Waiting for your review on that one :)Recommend

  • Nyayapati Kiran

    Nice review – Sami Saayer
    @ Anshuman – Unfortunately Raanjhnaa movie is banned in Pakistan.

    Regards,
    Kiran
    MumbaiRecommend

  • Ali

    @Nyayapati Kiran,
    no its not banned…who told you that?Recommend

  • http://UK Salman

    Good review, but a small correction. Dil & Isqh were made by Indra Kumar not David Dhawan. Recommend

  • saad

    hindu boy loves muslim girl (like ishaqzaade, in raanjhna she is also zoya!!) so ‘disallowed’ but not ‘banned’ as it will be out on dvd by end next month.
    surprisingly such films are screened in uae where youtube hasn’t been blocked!
    go figure!
    n yeah! fukrey is fun!Recommend

  • Faisal

    Fukrey is a TREAT TO WATCH however Raanjhna is a MUST WATCH Recommend

  • Omar

    @Nyayapati Kiran,@Ali, @saad: Importing of Indian movies is still banned under Pakistani law. The distributors in Pakistan import Indian movies from other countries and get certificates as UAE movie, British movie, American movie and so on.Recommend

  • Nyayapati Kiran

    @ Ali & Saad – in a way it’s banned, isn’t. Never mind.

    @ Faisal – if the movie is disallowed as mentioned above by beloved friends Ali & Saad, how come you watched it?

    @ Omar – that’s news to me.

    Best wishes,
    Nyayapati Kiran
    MumbaiRecommend

  • Faisal

    Dear Nyayapati Kiran, Check dailymotion.com !! you’ll find both movies even I watch all programs on dailymotion nowadays it’s still not banned in Pakistan cheers!!Recommend