(A Review of the Movie ‘Patiala House’ by Swarnagauri Tonse)
‘Patiala House’ is a cute movie wrapped up in cheese that is cheesier than cheese.
We went to the movie with very low expectations, considering the major disappointment from Akshay Kumar in his last film, Tees Maar Khan and the mediocrity of the promos. We hardly had any choice as there were no other films worth watching that weekend and we had to watch something. Thankfully Patiala House wasn’t as disappointing as Tees Maar Khan, and on the contrary was at least 5 times better than it.
The movie is about an ex-cricket star Parghat Singh Kalhot or ‘Gattu’(Akshay Kumar) who has to abandon his dream of playing in the England Cricket Team because of his dad. His dad hates the ‘goras’ because of two of their relatives were murdered at the height of racial tensions in Southall. After that he devotes himself to the cause of representing Indians of Southall who have been victims of injustice and mistreatment by the ‘goras’. He orders his son to not play cricket, especially with the ‘goras’. As a compliant son of an overbearing dad he gives up his dreams and becomes a shopkeeper of an Indian shop his dad gives him. His brothers, sisters and cousins who live with him (it’s a big joint family) blame him for their inability to pursue their dreams against the wishes of the head of the house, so with the persuasion of his family members and his half-gori girlfriend Simran (Anoushka Sharma) he secretly goes for the try-outs for the new English T20 team, and even makes it.
The big and the only let down of the movie is the story. It is filled with illogicalities and is hardly convincing. On the up side though, all the actors did a good job. Akshay Kumar was subtle and wasn’t over the top, Anushka Sharma was pretty and her acting was good, Rishi Kapoor did a great job and Gattu’s British-Indian family members were a heartwarming lot. My only problem was that a great actress like Dimple Kapadia was given a miniscule role as Gattu’s mother. She didn’t have many lines and just had to stand and sulk. The films does have its moments of laugh-out-loud comedy and poignant drama. The soundtrack by Shankar Ehsaan Loy isn’t very impressive and the songs don’t really stick to your mind, except for one or two. Overall, it’s a pleasant one-time watch. I don’t have any great expectations from the movie’s box office collections though.
If you are willing to digest sour cheese to get to the cuteness of the movie, then surely watch it. I give the movie 2.5 stars out of 5.
I came out of the theatre with the what-the-hell-was-that expression. I still couldn’t figure the movie out. Tees Maar Khan, for me, was another of the mindless comedies which have become just too frequent in bollywood (though dad tells me it was a hundred times better than golmaal 3). I really feel bad that Farah Khan disappointed me, because TMK neither had the style nor the entertainment which Main Hoon Na and Om Shanti Om promised AND provided. I thoroughly enjoyed her two previous ventures. I felt like crying towards the end of TMK. And not in a good way.
Tees Maar Khan is the story of a con man Tabrez Mirza Khan aka Tees Maar Khan(Akshay Kumar) who repeats the cheesy one liner ‘Tawaif ki lutati izzat ko bachana, aur tees maar khan ko kaid karna – dono bekaar hai’ over and over again. Well, you get the point. He cannot be captured. Etc. So in the film he gets captured in Paris in the beginning, escapes the police in the plane in a cringeworthy overly non-realistic way, strikes a deal with the Johri brothers (Siamese twins who are antique robbers) to rob a train which carries 10,000 kg of antique stuff with the condition that he gets 50% of the moolah, and comes up with an ingenious(NOT) plan to do it. The plan involves faking a film shooting in a village near the railway tracks and fooling the villagers into stealing the stuff for him. He even fools a famous bollywood superstar, Aatish Kapoor(Akshaye Khanna), into working in the fake film by guaranteeing an Oscar for him. In the process of the fake shooting hamare tees maar khan unintentionally does good things, then intentionally does good things, then gets caught, and escapes again.
TMK is a no-brainer sans a story with substance, and is just a couple of cheesy jokes loosely strung together. Therefore it is hardly impressing. And such a film coming from Farah Khan makes it more pathetic. You know a movie is messed up when a heroine who is just meant to be a background showpiece actually does much better than the hero. Akshay Kumar’s performance made me facepalm throughout the movie. It was as if he was beating us with a stick and forcing us to laugh. Akshaye Khanna didn’t have much to do really, but he was good. Katrina Kaif was brilliant. I think this was the first time I actually loved Katrina’s performance in any movie. She saved it, really. And the only high point of the movie was ‘Sheila ki Jawani’ which sadly got over early in the movie(I think it was the first song of the movie, not sure) and Katrina was undoubtedly hot in that. Raghu and Rajeev as the Siamese twins were good too, but then I can’t judge because they hardly did anything. Everybody else gave a fine performance.
Overall it was a mediocre movie. If I were to rate it out of 5, I would give it 2. Watch it only if you are bored. Nay, I say getting bored is better.
P.S. I would like to specially mention the well-shot end credits where the cast and crew are presented with fake oscars. Everybody looked good in that, especially Twinkle Khanna. That was one of the two places where the movie was worth it(the other being sheila ki jawani, of course)
P.P.S. Aatish Kapoor DOES win an oscar in the end. Go figure.