Am often asked about sequels... Do sequels ensure success? Are sequels a shortcut to victory? Are we exploiting a winning formula to triumph over troubled times? Is there a bankruptcy of ideas and is that the stimulus for resorting to sequels?
I genuinely feel that if a film-maker has created a triumphant trademark/brand name, why should he be apologetic about making wealth on it? But, very frankly, sequels don't necessarily guarantee victory. Whether it's a sequel or a prequel, or a recreation of a successful film, it works only if the spectator is able to relate to the goings on. Oh yes, the registered brand makes you connect to a film and its characters instantaneously and perhaps the marketing budgets get condensed in the process. But every film is judged in isolation and very significantly on merit.
BHEJA FRY 2 looks at the escapades of Bharat Bhushan, the idiot, who continues to deep-fry the viewers' brains with his foolhardy and imprudent deeds. But there are some observable modifications. The most prominent one being, Kay Kay Menon is the next pivotal character, after Vinay and the setting is now a cruise liner. BHEJA FRY was based on the French comedy LE DINER DE CONS, which not only inspired this Bollywood remake but also a Hollywood film DINNER FOR SCHMUCKS. On the other hand, BHEJA FRY 2 comes across as a novel concept.
It's a challenge for Sagar Ballary to make the sequel a far bigger sensation. Of course, the comparisons with the first part are inevitable. Regrettably, BHEJA FRY 2 doesn't really reach there for varied reasons...
One, the substance is lacking.
Two, the hilarity quotient is lower than expected.
Three, ideally, BHEJA FRY 2 should've had loads of uproarious moments and witty one-liners, but barring a few individualistic sequences, it lacks the bite to keep you enthralled and entertained.
Most importantly, you want the idiot to be more irksome, more exasperating, more dim-witted and more annoying this time. But he isn't. He doesn't take buffoonery to the next level. The kind of humor instilled in the narrative hardly evokes mirth.
The setting is bigger [shot aboard the luxury cruise liner and also at Bintan Island Resorts], but the absence of a defining screenplay leaves you squirming in your seat. You carry a few moments home, not the film in totality.
Good hearted but not worldly-wise, the roly-poly tax inspector Bharat Bhushan [Vinay Pathak] is back to fulfill his long cherished dream of becoming a singer. To further his ambition, he enters a game show hoping to win a cash prize with which he can make his music album. Eventually, Bhushan goes on to win the competition, which also gifts him a free stay on a cruise ship.
It is on this cruise that he meets Ajit Talwar [Kay Kay Menon], a corrupt business tycoon, who is taking sheath on the cruise to flee from the Income Tax department. Close on his heels is tax inspector M.T. Shekharan [Suresh Menon], who keeps disguising himself to reach to the culprit.
When Talwar learns of Bhushan's profession, he alerts his subordinates to keep a watch on him and in due course, get rid of him. However, on being introduced to Talwar, Bhushan finds out of his media investments and is out to impress him. The cruise becomes a perfect rendezvous for Bhushan with the presence of Ranjini [Minnisha Lamba], a media executive who Bhushan had met on the game show.
Later, an unpleasant incident occurs and Talwar and Bhushan find themselves stranded on a deserted island. It is on the island that Talwar realizes what a pain Bhushan is. And if that isn't enough, Bhushan's folly lands them hostage in the hands of an eccentric [Amole Gupte].
The sole explanation why BHEJA FRY 2 works sporadically and intermittently is courtesy Vinay Pathak, who carries off the part of a bonehead with effortless ease. But the screenplay is devoid of exhilarating moments and the absence of a watertight screenplay is felt all the more towards the second hour, when Kay Kay and Vinay get marooned on an island. Right from the character of Amole Gupte to the sequence of events that lead to the culmination, the graph of the film only goes downhill. Even the dialogues are humdrum and lack wit.
BHEJA FRY 2 boasts of two spunky tracks, 'Ishq Da Keeda' and 'Rahi Rahi', but the first isn't included in the narrative, while the other comes towards the fag end with the final credits.
Vinay is wonderful as the dimwit and tries to restructure the magic all over again. Minissha looks gorgeous and enacts her part well. Kay Kay is efficient, as always. Amole Gupte disheartens. Also because he's saddled with an inconsequential part. Suresh Menon is too good. In fact, the entire South Indian-North Indian bickering between Vinay and Suresh is a highpoint of the enterprise. Rahul Vohra leaves a mark. Rukhsaar is wasted. Ditto for Aditi Gowitrikar. Rahul Singh gets no scope. Virendra Saxena suffers due to a poorly sketched role. Amit Behl is good. Kishwer Merchant acts well.
On the whole, BHEJA FRY 2 rides on a triumphant brand, but one expects a laudable follow up in terms of hilarity and entertainment. Besides, it should've taken the movie-watching experience to the next level. Sadly, it doesn't!