Housefull 2 (2012) *MQ*

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One more screwball comedy with a circus of characters each with a screw or two loose! There are four papas looking for superrich husbands for their respective daughters.There are four brides, all agog to marry their prince charming.

But the four prince charming are not really the prince charming but rank losers, crooks, swindlers, fiddlers, hitching their rickety wagons to the ladies’ fortunes. The plot thickens when all the dozen characters are inside one mansion and there’s a raging confusion over who’s who, with each papa thinking his prospective, rich son-in-law is named ‘Jolly’.

There’s deception, trickery, a battle of supremacy between two crooks, and the confusion climaxes in a wedding sequence with four brides, four grooms and the four papas who can’t stand each other. Question is: kiska band bajega!

Sajid Khan is not the kind of director to rustle up an intelligent comedy. The phrase ‘intelligent comedy’ is, in fact, oxymoronic for him. And Housefull 2 treads the same track as his previous comedies Housefull and Heyy Babyy, both of them hits. Sajid’s mantra is simple. Make sure the gags keep flowing one after another, and the rest (script, character sketches, logic) goes by the board. No wonder the script of Housefull 2 is a train of disjointed gags, many with little or no relevance to the plot progression, but to Sajid’s credit, some jokes do work, but not all. For instance, the sequences of the crocodile biting at the pants of Ritesh Deshmukh or a python getting up close and personal with John Abraham leave you laughing despite their silliness. Johnny Lever’s OTT snoopy act — with an overuse of ‘the’ in his English lines — falls the flat.

The best acts are put up by Akshay Kumar and John Abraham, both playing conmen. Akshay’s comic timing is back in its groove, and the once wooden John shows a surprising knack to make you smile with his gauche act. Ritesh Deshmukh is sadly reduced to hollering his lines, while Shreyas Talpade has his squinty moments now and then. Among the ladies, only Asin gets some meat in the role. The others (Jacqueline Fernandez, Shazahn Padamsee and Zarine Khan) are merely confection to the comedy.

Among the papas, Rishi Kapoor takes the cake, followed by Mithun Chakraborty, Boman Irani and Randhir Kapoor, in that order.

The songs (Sajid-Wajid) are fun to watch, but the fight sequences seem forcibly squeezed in just to have the two musclemen Akshay Kumar and John Abraham show their derring-do. The film could also have done better without the melodrama in the second half.

Verdict: Peg your expectations low and don’t hope for clever humour from Housefull 2 and chances are you will find this film a jolly good entertainer.

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