Director: Sajid Khan;
Cast: Saif Ali Khan, Riteish Deshmukh, Ram Kapoor, Bipasha Basu, Esha Gupta, Tamannaah Bhatia
Ram Kapoor, Saif Ali Khan and Riteish Deshmukh in a still from 'Humshakals'
Imagine this. You slip and fall into a ditch. And then you get up cursing yourself for missing the step. And two steps later, you again slip and fall into a ditch. You get up and two steps later, you again slip and fall into a ditch... you are hopping mad and shocked by the end of this experience? Well, that kind of sums up one's experience of watching 'Humshakals'...
Here's the story. There's an evil mama, KANS aka Kunwar Amarnath Singh (Ram Kapoor), who wants to usurp Ashok Singhania's business empire (Saif Ali Khan, who moonlights as a stand-up comedian for passion) and decides to eliminate him and his friend Kumar (Riteish Deshmukh). But then what he didn't know was there are humshakals of all three abounding in the area with the same names and he and the bewildered audience has to go through a sh** load of confusion before the film reaches the climax. The in-between 140 odd minutes are crammed with Saif and Riteish going from being retards to dogs to bikini-clad waitresses to homosexuals to super horny men to... are you still with me?
Also read: More trouble in store for 'Humshakals'?
The film is shot mostly in London and in a mental hospital called Cray G (I can almost hear the dialogue writers chuckling at the cleverness of it all). So there are plenty of 'angreGs' lurking around in the background, generally looking serious in a boardroom or looking crazy in the mental hospital. All of them, including Prince Charles if you please, speak Hindi. I reckon so busy were the writers and director in being 'funny' and reproducing and recycling really old whatsapp kind of jokes, that they didn't notice that there was no logic, no sense and for that matter, utter lack of sensitivity in the whole film. How else do you explain a cringe-worthy scene where the two 'idiots' play video game with the life support system of an old sick man making him come in and out of consciousness (et tu, Akash Khurana?). If you are particularly sensitive towards old people, it might help you to know that dwarfs, homosexuals etc are not spared either.
There are some fleeting moments of humour but then they are...well...fleeting. We know by now that Saif has a good comic timing, but all we get here is him making faces and hamming to the point of embarrassment.
I suspect the one line directive given to Bipasha Basu, Esha Gupta and Tamannah is, "Wear short clothes, giggle, wave or do whatever you want. But just be around to make the frame look pretty."
Silly, irreverent humour is always a welcome change. But braindead, childish (sorry children, don't roll your eyes yet) pathetic attempt at funny is not. And I think the only original joke is the fact that Ram Kapoor quit his TV career for this film. Ram Kapoor did put in a sincere effort into making whatever he was doing believable but that sight of him in a red bikini overpowered it all.