Cast: Vinay Pathak, Mugdha Godse, Saurabh Shukla, Raima Sen
Director: Anil Kumar Choudhary
An arrow-straight writer (Pathak) goes by the name of Purushottam, and mooches about morosely. The market demands `chat-pata’ stuff, but he will not kow-tow, not even to please his shrieky ‘biwi’ (Godse) who calls him, ‘pyaar se’, Puru.
You keep wanting this film to ‘ho ja shuru’, but ‘Kaagaz Ke Fools’ doesn’t have the feet for it.
Not knowing quite where to turn, it comes up with a ‘juaari-sharaabi’ adda, run by an oily fellow, a good-time girl ( Sen) with a heart of gold, a corpulent brother-in-law (Shukla), and a film so bereft of any plot or sense that you wonder how it got made. The story is cut-rate. The sets are shabby. So is the acting.
Pathak, last seen in a nice turn in ‘Badlapur’, tries moving through it in glassy-eyed earnestness. Shukla has done this kind of role so many times that he is practically invisible. These are actors you go to see, and what you get is protracted awfulness. Even if films get made to pay the bills, do we not expect a base minimum from actors who’ve delivered in the past?
The ladies are no help, either. Godse, whose Marathi accent belies her loud Punjabi character, makes you grit your teeth, and Sen’s good-bad girl is all red-lipped, black-negligee simper. After a point, I had my eyes closed, but it didn’t get any better.
The name should have tipped me off. More fool me.