Is HUM TUM SHABANA a present-day adaptation of David Dhawan's immensely likeable DEEWANA MASTANA? That's what a lot of people seem to be asking me online. Call it a coincidence, but two guys chasing one girl isn't new to Hindi movies. Coincidences apart, both HUM TUM SHABANA and DEEWANA MASTANA are poles apart when it comes to the plotline and the way the screenplay unfolds.
Helmed by Sagar Ballary, HUM TUM SHABANA tilts more towards the GOLMAAL brand of non-stop laughathons than the BHEJA FRY variety, which Ballary is known for. Ballary shifts lanes this time, attempting a madcap entertainer that throws logic out of the window. He opts for a plot that abounds in ludicrous situations, with a twist in the tale towards the post-interval portions. But it is this twist that blows the impact created by an immensely watchable first hour.
At the cost of repeating myself, I wish to state that comedy is serious business and making people laugh in those two hours is a herculean task. HUM TUM SHABANA may not be the most inventive film made in Bollywood, but, yes, it delivers what it promises -- loads of laughter -- at least in the first hour. But how one wishes the post-interval portions were as rip-roaring funny, since that's what you carry home when the movie concludes.
HUM TUM SHABANA revolves around Rishi [Tusshar Kapoor] and Kartik [Shreyas Talpade], who compete with each other to woo the same girl -- Shabana [Minissha Lamba]. The woman they woo belongs to an underworld clan; her uncle [Satish Kaushik] is a don. The two guys are kidnapped and are told to undergo a rigorous training in nefarious activities, if they have to win the hand of the girl they love.
Director Sagar Ballary packs in lots of gags and witty one-liners in the first hour and the story unfolds at a missile's speed. There are sequences that make you smile and even break into guffaw at times. The expectations from the second hour, therefore, are monumental. But barring one sequence in the post-interval portions, which is truly funny, the second hour stumbles and fumbles, with the entire Horror House track trying so hard to be funny, but falling flat in the process. Frankly, Ballary loses track in these portions.
There's no denying that the writing of the film is erratic. The characters are well defined, the setting and situations are just right and the dialogue are sharp and witty. But the screenplay in the second hour doesn't create magic. One doesn't mind watching nonsensical situations as long as the film holds your interest, but it doesn't.
Sachin-Jigar are a talented composer duo and their tunes in HUM TUM SHABANA are equally mass-friendly. 'Hey Na Na Na Shabana' and 'Music Bandh Na Karo' are chartbusters already. I'd like to make a special mention of the dialogue [Sharat Kataria], which are in sync with the mood of the film.
Both Tusshar and Shreyas have a crackling coming timing and it's evident in HUM TUM SHABANA. In fact, the madness in the film is because of these two actors. The crazy stuff they do and the Tom and Jerry kind of situations that one gets to watch contribute to the engaging moments. These two actors don't let you down one bit, both are in top form.
Minissha hasn't done title roles earlier, but she has been an integral part of movies that had her in author-backed roles, such as YAHAAN, WELL DONE ABBA and ANAMIKA. In HUM TUM SHABANA, though the focus is on Tusshar and Shreyas, Minissha too holds the scenes prominently and effortlessly, though she gets sidelined towards the second hour.
Satish Kaushik is a veteran when it comes to the comic genre. His comic timing was evident in a number of films in the past and together with Sanjay Mishra, he brings the house down on several occasions throughout the film. Sanjay Mishra is simply crazy. Pia Trivedi oozes glamour and does well in her debut film.
On the whole, HUM TUM SHABANA is a good idea gone wrong! It has a funny first half, but a disappointing second hour.