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Monday, May 7, 2012


(Published in The Sunday Guardian, on 6 May 2012, retrieved from http://www.sunday-guardian.com/masala-art/good-heavens)

Cast: Emraan Hashmi, Randeep Hooda, Esha Gupta, Manish Chaudhary
Director: Kunal Deshmukh
Rating: 1 star
As I write this, I’m not sure whether Jannat 2 was intended to be a comedy, thriller or action flick. I’ve just sat through the film thinking the female lead was Sunny Leone, partly because of her expressions, and partly because she plays a doctor called Jaanvi Singh Tomar, whom Sonu Dilli (Emraan Hashmi) fantasises about.
Of course, a story about gun crime is set in Delhi. Which means there will be chases in Chandni Chowk, a Sufi-meets-Punjabi song in Dilli Haat and India Gate, a love song in Qutub Minar and Humayun’s Tomb...hell, even the Airport Express is not spared.
The sleekest part of the film is the opening montage, where Sonu Dilli, KKC (apparently kutti-kameeni-cheez) rants about a world in which everyone including doctors and engineers wants a gun. He’s in the illegal gun trade, and his front is a cut-piece shop we see him at only when he’s romancing his scantily-clad doctor-muse. We know he’s a good guy because he’s in the gun trade for the right reasons – if people didn’t have guns, they’d kill each other with knives; if they didn’t have knives, they’d kill each other with truncheons. Guns are the quickest and least traumatic. Awww.
Enter Pratap Raghuvanshi (Randeep Hooda), a fiery ACP whose fantastic entry is ruined by a weepy back-story. Poor Randeep Hooda ends up, yet again, being a good actor in a bad film, and one can sense him trying not to puke through tender moments with Emraan Hashmi. Yeah, the cop-informer relationship is fleshed out far better than the gangster-doctor affair in this sordid underworld tale where kohl-eyed Muslims are the small fry, and kohl-eyed Durga-worshipping Mangal Singh (Manish Chaudhary) is the big fish.
The sad thing about Jannat 2 is that the framework could have made for a neat, tight thriller, if it hadn’t been weighed down by lard. Sonu Dilli breaks into song more often than he uses the C-word, and the only memorable one is Shafqat Amanat Ali Khan’s Tu Hi Mera. Unfortunately, this song highlights the stupidity of the only doctor who doesn’t own a car in Delhi – she takes an auto from Dilli Haat to Qutub Minar while her lover dances alongside. Throw in a comedy track that stars two bumbling cops and relies on stereotyped accents for humour – need I say more?
The Verdict: The only intentionally funny scene in this film occurs a few seconds before the interval. And you’ll probably catch it flipping channels on TV a few weeks later.

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