‘Jugjug Jio’ movie review: Anil Kapoor is the throbbing heart of this dysfunctional comedy of parts

Director Raj Mehta’s family drama may spark some heartfelt laughs and some animated dinner table discussions, but the film only scratches the proverbial surface of male authority and superstition.

Director Raj Mehta’s family drama may spark some heartfelt laughs and some animated dinner table discussions, but the film only scratches the proverbial surface of male authority and superstition.

What happens when a son on the verge of divorce learns that his father is also willing to sever his relationship with his mother? If the son cannot handle the success of his wife… the father wants to get rid of his angry spouse.

Director Raj Mehta tells us that love in both arranged and love marriages can dry up if they are not treated with respect and trust. Ironically, these two elements are missing for a large part in his treatment of the subject. There are sequences that give hope that the film will say something new, but that only scratches the cosmic surface of male entitlement and superstition, almost to the point of normalizing them.

To make the bitter pill taste delicious, the writers roll it into such a sacrosanct form of situational humor that the complex subject loses its power. The film is largely set in Patiala, not enough. Whenever Maniesh Paul comes on screen, someone from the background has to shout ‘Munda’ (boy). As the comic treatment undermines the characters’ motivations, it is not easy to take them seriously. It is only late in the second half that the film finds its muffled voice, as the mother-in-law and daughter-in-law discuss their experience of marriage.

For the rest, it seems that the origin story of failed relationships is entangled with comic background sound because the makers might not have faith in the audience. That’s why they present the Karan Johar universe of Punjabi family so lightly. There was a time when only men used to tie on alcohol, now the women of the family can also say cheers. That’s progress!

The actors try their best to make it work. Varun Dhawan has emerged as a capable prototype of ‘Tubelight’ as Kuku describes himself towards the end. Kuku is the kind of man whose heart is buried somewhere beneath his six-pack abs and needs some Patiala pegs to light up his mind. Married to his childhood love Naina (Kiara Advani), Kuku’s fragile male ego flickers when his wife climbs up the career ladder and is dumped in a nightclub. Her success shakes her male authority and makes her feel insecure, a lesser entity in the relationship.

A still from ‘Jugjug Jio’

But before Kuku can inform his father Bhim Saini (Anil Kapoor) of the divorce, Bheem tells him that he is contemplating separation from his mother, Geeta (Neetu Kapoor), whom he calls the ‘vegetarian lioness’ and Meera. (Tisca Chopra) as described. ), a math teacher, has brought romance back into his life. It grows into a series of tragic situations; Some of which are organic, but others are forced to keep the narrative light and frothy. For example: The scene where Bheem introduces Kuku to Meera.

Meera has been reduced to a single-note character to make Geeta shine. We never know what he found in Bhima, or why Bhima drifted towards him. A lot of time is spent telling us that this is not about the hormonal surge of late, but there is no room in the film to discuss the inherent patriarchy in a father and son who are their wives and sister Ginni (Prajakta Kohli). ) has also spread.

Despite the limitations in characterization, Anil Kapoor is the throbbing heart of the film and rises once again above writing to keep the audience hooked. Her comic chemistry with Varun provides some high points in the film. Neetu Kapoor makes an impressive comeback and lights up the screen in limited screen time; One of the most powerful scenes is probably a reflection of her real life. Kiara aptly comes across as a wife who doesn’t know what else she can do for marriage, and Maniesh Paul adds zing to his comic timing.

Despite blessings at the box office, the film doesn’t have legs to survive jug (of a long period) in public memory. This can only generate some hearty laughs and lead to some animated dinner table discussions.

jagjag jio is currently running in theaters