When Bollywood actor Varun Dhawan urged his fans to “chill” and not overthink his comedy Judwaa 2, did he mean that we must switch off all our mental faculties and toss our intellect away?
Forget overthinking, it looks like not a sane thought was spared for this disastrous twin comedy filled with crude physical comedy.
This is an update of 1997 Salman Khan-starring Judwaa that had cheesy jokes delivered with great conviction by the superstar. It was a monstrous hit, but trying to milk that old formula and trying to ride on its steam by recycling old jokes was a terrible idea.
Firstly, Dhawan — although earnest in his portrayal as long-lost twins Prem and Raja — simply doesn’t have the star power or charisma that Khan possesses. It’s not for want of trying, but the jokes are juvenile (Sample this: Who’s the president of United States: Donald Duck or Donald Trump?)
The film begins with a smuggler getting cross with a rich businessman Malhotra (Sachin Khedekar) when he rats on him to custom officials over a bag of illicit diamonds. But the villain takes off with one of Malhotra’s newborn twins (Raja) to punish the good Samaritan.
Raja, who was an insignificant pawn in the smuggler’s avenging game, grows up on the streets of Mumbai after a random lady picks him up from the railway tracks and adopts him as her son, but Prem grows up as a sheltered son in the lap of luxury and overprotective parents in London. Prem is a diffident gentleman, while Raja gets by in life with his wits and brawn.
Everybody in Judwaa 2 overacts, and the dialogues feel like they were written by an adolescent for his high school drama. “You [expletive] me, I [expletive] you,” snarls the smuggler to Malhotra.
The women, Jacqueline Fernandez and Taapsee Pannu, are on call to look pretty and be airheads with toned bodies. While Fernandez does her bit convincingly by giggling gregariously, Pannu is a misfit and looks lost.
Dhawan’s bronzed torso seems to be another character in this tedious comedy. When everything else fails, a shirtless action sequence or a shirtless song sequence is meant to salvage the worn-out film. Barring few jokes that land, the majority of the gags fail to evoke any emotion.
Even the physical comedy borders on the crude. And employing sidekicks with speech impediments (Rajpal Yadav as Raja’s mate) isn’t funny — back then or now.
But the reboot of the songs by Anu Malik, Oonchi Hai Building and Tan Tana Tan, are fun-filled and take you down a nostalgic route. However, a glitzy music video or a cameo by the original star of Judwaa, Khan, can’t make up for a flawed comedy. Watch this at your own risk.
Film: Judwaa 2
Cast: Varun Dhawan, Jacqueline Fernandez, Taapsee Pannu and Rajpal Yadav
Director: David Dhawan
Running Time: 160 minutes
Stars: 2 out of 5