June Issue 2010
Comedy of Errors
And a houseful it is. Akshay Kumar, Riteish Deshmukh, Arjun Rampal, Lara Dutta, Deepika Padukone, Boman Irani and Lilette Dubey all come together in the Sajid Khan production Housefull. But does the stellar cast make the movie a super hit?
An ingenious script is never something one expects from productions like this but entertainment is. The movie delivers on the latter count, ensuring many good laughs along the way, but those giggles will only be aroused and stoked when watching this flick with company.
In Housefull, Aarush (Akshay Kumar) is a simpleton who wishes well for everyone but ends up doing the exact opposite of what he intends. His luck is truly awful. He is fired from his job, his girlfriend leaves him to marry somebody else and when things finally start to look up and he is about to begin a happily married life, his wife runs away with another man on their honeymoon. So there is nothing left to do but end his life. But even his attempt at suicide is a failure: Aarush is rescued by Sandy (Deepika Padukone). He gets his second chance.
His friends Bob (Riteish Deshmukh) and Hetal (Lara Dutta) help convince Sandy’s dictatorial older brother Major Krishna (Arjun Rampal) to accept Aarush as Sandy’s life partner. To return the favour, Sandy decides to help Hetal reunite with her father (Boman Irani), who has not spoken to her ever since she married Bob, as Bob isn’t her father’s idea of an ideal son-in-law, e.g. a millionaire. Following Sandy’s philosophy of “A lie that makes a home is not really a lie,” the four land up in a fine mess.
Both Hetal’s father and Sandy’s brother decide to come meet them. With the visitors landing up unannounced, blunders, cover-ups and more white lies and role reversals follow.
This is a simple comedy-of-errors movie that explores the not-so unexplored areas of family pressure, the white lie and the definition of success. It also questions the stereotype of the ideal suitor. Even though Aarush is not well-to-do, is unemployed, married and seeking a divorce, he is not an unsuitable choice for a husband – idealistically.
In terms of the soundtrack, the only song that has been popular on the charts is “Oh girl, you’re mine.” There seems to be no reason why any other song should have done well, with “Papa sleeping” and “He’s such a loser” as titles. Even the acting is lacklustre. The actors have not been cast in demanding roles, so there is no reason to expect any more or less from them. Boman Irani is the only one cast in an unusual role – but this has also become a norm in Bollywood now. Any wonder then, why this Bollywood flick is not a super hit?
Farieha Aziz is a Karachi-based journalist and teacher. She joined Newsline in 2007, rising to assistant editor. Farieha was awarded the APNS award for Best Investigative Report (Business/Economic) for the year 2007-2008. She is a co-founder and Director at Bolo Bhi, an advocacy forum of Digital Rights.