Housefull 2 Indian Express Review by Shubhra Gupta

FilmCast:Akshay Kumar, John Abraham, Riteish Deshmukh, Shreyas Talpade, Rishi Kapoor, Randhir Kapoor, Mithun Chakraborty, Johny Lever, Asin, Jacqueline Fernandes, Zarine Khan, Shazahn Padamsee, Chunky Pandey, Boman Irani

Director: Sajid Khan

Indian Express Rating: *1/2

Several times in ‘Housefull 2’, random characters laugh at their own jokes and sing out: sense of huuuuumour. It pretty much says everything about the film, a sequel to the film of the same name which came out two years ago. You have to be able to find the doings of this vast cast amusing. And if you don’t, you have to be able to summon your funny bone to keep sitting, while pondering the cosmic corniness of the world according to Sajid Khan and other such weighty matters.

Four fellows (Akshay, John, Riteish, Shreyas), who all go by the name of Jolly for reasons too complicated to go in here, fetch up in a billionaire’s mansion somewhere in the UK. We know it’s there because there are cutaways to the London Bridge, and sundry white people show up as extras. The same number of leading ladies, in order of importance and screen time (Asin, Jacqueline, Zarine, Shazahn) show up when it’s their turn. The billionaire JD (Mithun) who now lives in this gilded mansion has a sepia past : I will be giving away no secrets if I tell you that JD used to be Jagga Daaku back in India. Mithun wears crisply-starched dhoti-kurtas, pats horses, and brandishes a rifle. Sartorially, Mithun’s opposite is Chunky Pandey who goes by the name of Aakhri Pasta and wears red and purple jackets and pants. The girls are all kitted out in make-up that screams for attention, not in a good way: if we are to take Asin seriously, she needs to learn how to use pancake better.

Okay, where was I? Ah yes, the billionaire is Riteish’s growly bear of a ‘baap’ and sonny boy is petrified, so he hides his lady love Zarine in the mini-army that’s milling about the place. Akshay is paired with Asin, and spends most of his time emitting a moan plus flicking his tongue side to side plus leering. He does that quite well, by the way, only coming off second when he stands next to the original Bollywood leer-er, old time villain Ranjeet, in dyed black hair and fat gold chains, who is brought on to lecture the guys on the ills of greed and letting down people.

John and Jacqueline get cosy, and Shreyas and Shazahn bring up the rear. Everyone yells. Boman, as a retired cop, in Gujarati, Johny, as a bug-eyed billionaire’s retainer, in Marathi. The Kapoor Bros, Randhir (with heavy bags under the eyes) and Rishi (how many jowls does the man have?) are called Daboo and Chintu, and presented as brothers-who-are-not-in-arms. There’s also a crocodile and a python, and their job is to grab people in the parts where it hurts the most.

Basically, Sajid in full flow, celebrating juvenalia. No plot (don’t be silly), decibel levels cranked high, situations careering from one gag to another, characters spewing rapidfire lines which are meant to make you guffaw. There were some so bad they were terrific. Sample this : “Brad ka toh pata nahin, par hum is Pitt mein teri wajah se hain”. I smiled duly. As the end neared after almost three hours, in which the cast is gathered in one place and let loose upon us, I came to this conclusion: ‘Housefull 2’ is better than ‘Housefull 1’, but only by a whisker. That’s the only metric to judge this film by.



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