Bollywood review: Arshad Warsi tries hard, but is unable to salvage 'Guddu Rangeela'

Not too long ago, director Subash Kapoor made a remarkable movie pitching India’s flawed judicial system at the centrestage. Using humour of the finest kind, his ‘Jolly LLB’ exposed the corrupt underbelly of a system that’s celebrated for being just.

The film also enabled actor Arshad Warsi to break-free from his Munnabhai-Circuit mould. It was indeed refreshing to see the actor finally get his due, and a character that didn’t reduce him to a mere buffoon.

Alas, Subhash is unable to create any such magic in his latest feature – ‘Guddu Rangeela’.

A movie that talks about empowering women but never allowing its own female characters enough screen space to voice their want for freedom.

They are, in fact, fitted in as the fillers, while the men lead the way. And, that’s possibly ‘Guddu Rangeela’s biggest failure.

Few minutes before the curtains roll down, Subash, probably recognizing his own slip-up, hurriedly hands his two women scope to soar, but it’s a tad too late to warrant any real worth.

It almost appears like Subash injected the barbaric honour killing menace into his screenplay as an afterthought, or merely to manipulate his audience.

‘Guddu Rangeela’ starts off as a revenge drama over caste conflicts, where Guddu and Rangeela, emerge from their impoverished backgrounds to start a revolution of sorts against the unjust don Billo. Along the way, they find three unlikely characters to join their force, and together they plan to defeat Billo’s gigantic army of mad men.

While Subhash’s genius emerges in the world he creates for visa celebration parties and men in saffron and sneakers, it soon fails to hold true.

Even his dialogues (some of them) are impressive, but it’s lost in the long-drawn, yet predictable drama that abruptly stalls to include romantic songs.

Arshad Warsi is left to flash his Khol-lined eyes, while mouthing strong dislike for a local don or immense affection for his woman. Amit Sadh is handed flashy, printed shirts and jokes that are lengthy and often unfunny. Even Ronit Roy is ordered to glare and grunt in abandon. Watching these talents struggle to lend credibility to characters that aren’t worthy of celebration is rather painful.

‘Guddu Rangeela’ could’ve turned into something so much more, but it doesn’t. And that’s a pity.