Monday, November 25, 2019

Review: Pagalpanti

Release date: November 22, 2019
Running time: 149 minutes
Starring: Anil Kapoor, John Abraham, Ileana D'Cruz

Pagalpanti is a new slapstick comedy about a man with cosmically bad luck: no matter what he tries to do and how careful he is with his ventures, it always gets messed up.  However, he has a heart of gold and two dedicated, cursed by association friends to help him on his journey.  He also has a strong desire to succeed and prove everyone (most importantly, the guru who foretold that his luck would be so terrible) wrong, which leads to many many hilarious and unfortunate situations.  

Given the three main characters and their constant disastrous endeavors, the movie has a very three stooges feel.  No matter what they try to do, something always goes wrong.  However, their general good nature of the three and their own lucky ignorance about life tend to move them along without much injury.  Along the way, they make new friends and enemies.  A movie like this will live and die by its comedy, and the comedy is only hit or miss.  The three friends are very likable and do a good job in their cursed roles, but the movie has many jokes that fall flat and even fewer laugh out loud moments.  That's not to say the movie doesn't have its moments, such as a ridiculous car chase and a haunted house experience, but overall I wish the film had been funnier.

Aside from the comedy, the plot of this movie drags on.  As a Hindi film, 2 and a half hours are normal, but this one really felt like it was that long.  The trio go through several attempts to break their curse, which was admirable, but it feels like there were a few too many attempts than necessary.  The five or six dance sequences were enjoyable but not spectacular, often being short and with a relatively small supporting cast.  And the computer graphics in the movie were noticeable, which can really break the experience.  The movie also, at one point, takes a nationalistic turn that didn't have much foretelling and feels like it was meant to add more weight to the ending.  

Pagalpanti has a slapstick, three stooges style with charismatic stars and several laughs.  However, the long run time, hit or miss comedy, and noticeable computer graphics should make you think twice before seeing this.  

Don't See It

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