Hungama 2 Review: Priyadarshan’s chaotic comedy-of-errors, starring Meezaan, Shilpa Shetty, Paresh Rawal and Pranitha Subhash, is distressingly dated.
Cast: Meezaan, Shilpa Shetty, Paresh Rawal and Pranitha Subhash
The film is streaming on Disney+ Hotstar.
Director Priyadarshan, known for his love for crackling comedies, misses the mark with Hungama 2. While there are moments that make us guffaw, the film is marred by a damp squib of an ending. Not only are revelations hastily squeezed in in the final act, but it also goes into a territory that is totally at odds with all that is established in earlier scenes.
Hungama 2 kicks off with Vaani (Pranitha Subhash) landing up at the Kapoors’ doorstep with a toddler, claiming that it is her college sweetheart Akash’s (Meezaan) child. Akash swears innocence and enlists the help of his family friend and colleague Anjali (Shilpa Shetty) in the matter. However, Anjali’s husband Radheshyam (Paresh Rawal) misunderstands the situation and assumes that she is having an affair with Akash.
While adapting the screenplay of Priyadarshan’s 1994 Malayalam film Minnaram, Yunus Sajawal would have done well to give it a generational update. It’s 2021, the year of futuristic smartphones, and Akash tries to entrap Vaani with a tape recorder. She, meanwhile, declares herself his ‘ardhangini (wife)’ only because he is supposedly the father of her child. The flippant attitude towards marital rape, too, has no place in a post #MeToo world.
Hungama 2’s wild inconsistencies demand more than a willing suspension of disbelief. How strong was the love between Meezaan and Pranitha’s characters? The flashbacks suggest a puppy love and at one point in the present timeline, he says that it was not ‘Ghalib wala gehra ishq (the deep love that is written about in poems)’ but a slight ‘gutargoo (fling)’. Until the very end, he remains dismissive of her, but that inexplicably changes.
Ashutosh Rana as the strict disciplinarian, who oscillates between formidable and silly, is the star of Hungama 2. Meezaan and Pranitha Subhash are serviceable enough, and while Shilpa Shetty looks stunning and brings plenty of oomph to the Chura Ke Dil Mera redux, she fails to make an impact otherwise. Priyadarshan’s frequent collaborators – Paresh Rawal and Rajpal Yadav – bring some laughs but they are too scattered. Akshaye Khanna’s cameo seems to have been shoehorned into the film for nostalgia value.
Hungama 2 is an uninviting concoction of stale tropes that not only lets down Shilpa Shetty, who makes her acting comeback after more than a decade, but also Priyadarshan, who returns to Hindi cinema after eight years.