In the Bollywood geriatric comedy The Shaukeens, a 60-year-old flashy bachelor KD (Annu Kapoor) is de-mystifying the new generation with: “they are generation X and they love s**”. He slugs down some alcohol after that rather distasteful declaration and his friends Lali (Anupam Kher, an unhappy husband saddled with a pious wife) and Pinky (Piyush Mishra, a lonely widower) nod in understanding. KD doesn’t stop with that and embarks on a monologue about youngsters and their moral bankruptcy. Did alcohol dull his senses or was this director Abhishek Sharma’s idea of a funny film? It’s tough to tell. But what’s certain is that the viewers experience a throbbing hangover.
In the first half of this tedious film, we are introduced to three old men who love leering at women. Their collective ambition is to get some attention from women. They even join an exercise class at a public park so that they can gawk at their curvy instructor. As Akshay Kumar, who plays a superstar in an extended cameo, explains: “Men are like dogs, the sight of a woman makes their tongues wag and eyes bulge.” If that was supposed to negate their creepy behaviour, then it just didn’t work.
The three men are so desperate for some action that they head off to a foreign country to fulfil their carnal desires. They rent a sea-facing villa in Mauritius and the homeowner happens to be Lisa Haydon. The sight of Ahana (Haydon) in skimpy clothes makes the men drool and they turn against each other to win her over. Meanwhile, she describes herself as a free-spirited gypsy. For a wild spirit, she has an unhealthy attachment to Facebook and her moods are dictated by the number of likes on the photos she posts. Agreed, she looks amazing in a swimsuit, but it’s difficult to warm up to her clueless, cute act. How can a grown women like her not be aware that three old men are groping her repeatedly? The laugh-out-loud moments are few in this film and the majority of them come from Akshay Kumar’s role. As an alcoholic, bored superstar he excels. Watch this if you are a fan of Akshay Kumar and can turn a blind eye to some blatant objectification of women.
Box: Out Now
Starring: Anupam Kher, Annu Kapoor, Piyush Sharma, Lisa Haydon and Akshay Kumar
Stars: 2 out of 5