Review: Fool N Final

Posted on June 2, 2007


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The only thing remarkable about this all-star comedy is how utterly asinine it is.

JUNE 3, 2007 – MOST TIMES, when a Bollywood director rips off something slightly exotic from the Cinema of Elsewhere, it takes a while before you figure out where the ideas are coming from. But Ahmed Khan, in his aptly-named Fool N Final, makes it easy for us right from Frame One, where robbers steal a big, fat diamond while dressed as sadhus in flowing beards. And you instantly have that “aha!â€? moment as you remember robbers stealing a big, fat diamond while dressed as Hasidic Jews in flowing beards. The image is from Snatch, of course, and this brain-addled remake shamelessly follows its predecessor beat for beat, right down to the boxing subplot and the Russian gunrunner (here, the character is called… Moscow Chikna) and the dog that swallows everything in sight. So, really, the only creative inputs – such as they are – come from the stunts department and the music-and-dance folks, even if you don’t remember a single one of Himesh Reshammiya’s tunes after they play out. What I did remember, though, was having, at some point, the overwhelming itch to dash off a note to Sharmila Tagore, requesting her to please sack her agent or whoever it is that’s been instrumental in making her play Sunil Shetty’s mother in the soppy Dhadkan, Aamir Khan’s grandmother in the dreadful Mann, and now Sunny Deol’s bhabhi in this. There are so many films being made out there, yet she effortlessly gravitates towards the very worst.

But maybe they just paid her a bomb. That’s the only explanation for the star cast of Fool N Final: Om Puri and Paresh Rawal among the top rung of Actors in Slumming Mode, followed by the less-illustrious likes of Shahid Kapoor, Ayesha Takia, Sunny Deol, Vivek Oberoi and Sameera Reddy, and the rear guard is made up of Chunkey Pandey, Gulshan Grover, Arbaaz Khan, Johny Lever, Zakir Hussain, Asrani, Vijay Raaz and Jackie Shroff (with scary teeth and the scarier name of Gunmaster G9). And I’m betting that after the cheques were made out to this army of actors (and non-actors), there was nothing left for the writers – which is surely why the first words uttered by Sharmila Tagore are: “Do kilo lauki dena.â€? (Yet, when she gets home after this subzi shopping expedition, she outlines her menu as consisting of rajma and stuffed karela – so perhaps the two kilos of lauki are for a rainy day?) But this ignominy is nothing compared to the things Paresh Rawal (as an unmarried man of a certain age) is made to say. When we first see him, he’s being dangled from a motorboat by a gangster threatening to throw him into the sea; when he is hauled back up, he remarks that if he’d been tossed over, “Shaadi se pehle hi hamaari joru window ho jaati.â€? It’s hard not to wince.

The only thing more excruciating than the dialogue is the background score, which cues us to the characters with awful songlets. When Shahid Kapoor makes his appearance, we hear: Don’t you know he’s a hea-a-artbreaker. And when the bubblegum-crazy Ayesha Takia shows up, the soundtrack goes: Ooh, baby baby. (We know they’re boyfriend and girlfriend because of the bit where she asks him if he wants some gum, and he simply peels off a piece stuck on her upper lip – after her bubble has gone splat – and begins chewing on that. Ah, true love!) They play small-time thieves who join Paresh Rawal and Johny Lever in the hunt for a diamond that don Arbaaz Khan is after. At some point during their quest, they dress up like Superman, Spider-Man, Batman and Wonder Woman – then, suddenly, Vivek Oberoi begins to run after a rooster. (The punning possibilities offered by this situation are enormous, but alas, this is a family publication!) But Fool N Final isn’t a total loss, for it features a very funny song sequence where a hapless Sunny Deol tries to match steps with Shahid Kapoor. Between the both of them, they have one right foot.

Copyright ©2007 The New Sunday Express

Posted in: Cinema: Hindi