Sunday, July 1, 2007

Bheja Fry: Very Enjoyable

I must say, I thoroughly enjoyed the movie, enough to ignore some of the glitches of the movie. I really laughed through some of the scenes of the movie, and I really believe that this was genuine laughter, not forced laughter along with people next to me. This is not a big budget movie, it does not have planes or cars chasing each other at high speed or exploding in big fireballs; and most of all, it does not have any of the big super-stars. It does star some great actors - Rajat Kapoor, Sarika, Milind Soman, Bhairavi Goswami, Ranveer Shorey, Vinay Pathak and a couple more people. And that's it, these are the total number of people starring in the movie. What it has is a script of one evening-night and all the goings-on during that night.
Well, actually, some of that is not true. The beginning of the movie is set some time before the evening in question, where Bharat Bhushan (Vinay Pathak) bores the hell out of his co-passenger on the bus by singing and reciting his life story and dedication to music. They show him to be a simple person, but definitely not the person you would want to meet. Besides his music, he works in the Income Tax department.
The story is based on the stress-busting technique employed by a busy music executive, Rajat Kapoor. Once a week, he will try to get a fake talent hunt organized to get a new singer wanna-be, all for his personal entertainment. His wife Sarika (with whom he shares a close yet strained relationship) does not approve of this tendency of his. She is another singer, and considers what he does as a form of torture.
For this week's idiot-talent dinner, he is recommended Bharat Bhushan as the wanna-be and he dutifully invites him over for dinner. A killer today is that he hurt his back earlier in the day and had a doctor (Tom Alter) come over and recommend rest. This is also the evening when his wife tells him that she is leaving him and he suspects that she has gone to Milind Soman's house (he had stolen Sarika from Milind a couple of years earlier). Bharat Bhushan hears all this when he is here for dinner and then the movie moves into faster motion.
First he invites an old flame of Rajat over while thinking that he is talking to the doctor (remember the bad back, so Rajat is having difficulties getting up). By this time, Rajat is in a foul mood, blaming Bharat for his problems. Then he pretends to be a Bhojpuri film maker and calls up Milind Soman from the same phone (weak point: A lot of landline phones also have caller ID), and in a moment of idiocy, gives the phone number. Milind recognizes the number and eventually comes over. During the course of the evening, Bharat turns back Sarika who has come back by thinking she is the old flame in a way that she gets real mad. When Milind comes over, during the remainder of the movie, you see him trying hard to stop laughing at the things Rajat has to do and put up.
It turns out that Sarika may go elsewhere to another person, for whom they don't have the number or address. As Bharat Bhushan is being turned out of the house (you know that can't happen), he claims that he knows the phone number (because an income tax raid was conducted on the house of this person by Bharat's colleague, Ranveer). This is the occasion to bring in Ranveer and he comes in as a stiff, starched honest income tax person. The scenes where they worry about whether to get him over to the house (due to rich paintings hanging and worrying about a raid later) are real humorous.
Even after this, there are a couple more interesting scenes, one where Ranveer gets to know of his wife's adultery in a flash; one where Bharat finally gets to know the motive of his being called to Rajat's house; and how he finally screws up the reunion of Rajat with Sarika.
This was a tremendous effort by the director, Sagar Ballary; but it could do with a couple of improvements. For one, it looked like the entire movie was set in 2-3 sets, and looked too much like a theatre production; for another, even if it was a short movie, the relationship between Rajat and Sarika is not outlined enough to understand why she suddenly left; but in the end, this was a great movie.

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