Bollywood and culture in an emerging India
A one-line review saying “this is a Rohit Shetty” film would suffice for most movies this director churns out with billion-rupee regularity, but “Bol Bachchan” is different. This time, Shetty has attempted to remake one of Hindi cinema’s most iconic comedies, one which shares its name with the series of films that gave Shetty his first hits in the industry.
In re-imagining “Gol Maal“, Shetty is taking up a gauntlet that he should have left well alone. Hrishikesh Mukherjee‘s brand of comedy couldn’t be more different than Shetty’s and in trying to combine the two, the film ends up going nowhere.
Mukherjee’s 1979 comedy of errors, about a meek protagonist who tries to fool his boss into thinking he is two different people, is also at the heart of “Bol Bachchan”, except Shetty spikes it with a liberal dose of item songs, inane dialogue, and of course, exploding vehicles.
Abhishek Bachchan plays Abbas, an unemployed youth who comes to a small village in Rajasthan with his sister Saina, hoping to improve his lot in life. In his attempt to save a child from drowning, Abbas inadvertently breaks open the lock of a temple, and invites the attention of Prithviraj (played by Ajay Devgn), the local ‘king’.