What is a sure shot formula for a movie’s success? A good script, direction, acting or is it screenplay or none of the above. It is but rehash- and that’s right, as this seems to be the current flavour for success. Refurbish one’s own movies and serving it afresh with new production values, a new star cast and new settings. This is what David Dhavan has done with his own Coolie No 1 (this is his second one after Judwaa).
Is it a dearth of new scripts, or did the director find some flaws in his original which he wanted to rectify (if that is the case, then he fails miserably) or was it a tribute to the original that was released in 1995 and now celebrating its Silver Jubilee year?
The original Coolie No 1 with Govinda and Karishma was an entertainer and delight to watch. This time around he has taken his son Varun Dhavan to reprise the role of Raju coolie and Sara Ali Khan appears in the shoes of Karishma Kapoor. Though one should not compare the two movies and they should be seen with discernment but because it’s from the same director and the movies are absolutely the same drawing, yet comparison is but natural.
The original with Govinda, Kader Khan and Shakti Kapoor was a delight due to their interaction and the comic timing. This one with Paresh Rawal and Rajpal Yadav loses the punch. Though nothing to be taken away from Varun and Sarah who have put in a sincere effort and try hard to save the enterprise, but one does come out feeling that Govinda had his own charm and Karishma really looked vulnerable according to the demand of the role. Also here we should mention that Sadashiv Amrapurkar made a much better pandit than Javed Jaffrey, not that he did anything wrong but again the role appeared like a half-baked pizza.
The movie as a whole has a serious deja vu issue. The whole cast has put in their professional efforts but those who have seen the original may not find this one as funny. Those who missed the original may still find it palatable. Let the audience be the jury.
As this one is streaming on Amazon prime since 25th December. The release on the OTT platform saves the filmmakers from worry about the audience in the theatre or the reaction. Does not matter if it is a hit or miss with them. This appears to be a safe route for all involved in the making of this film.
There is one question though which keeps popping in the mind, how come a Hindu marriage pandit gets marriage proposal for a Christian family seems a bit far fetched or are they trying to to build national integration. Running time 135 minutes.
– Reviewed by PAWAN GUPTA
Cast of Coolie No 1:
Varun Dhawan as Raju Coolie/Kunwar Raj Pratap Singh
Sara Ali Khan as Sarah Rozario (Jeffrey’s daughter and Raju Coolie’s wife
Paresh Rawal as Jeffrey Rozario
Javed Jaffrey as Pandit Jai Kishen
Rajpal Yadav as Pintu (Sarah and Anju’s uncle)
Johnny Lever as Inspector Jagjit Godbole
Sahil Vaid as Deepak Verma (Raju’s best friend)
Shikha Talsania as Anju Rozario
Vikas Verma as Mahesh Anand Pratap Singh
Manoj Joshi as Manager
Anil Dhawan as Mahendra Pratap Singh
Credits of Coolie No 1:
Production Company – Pooja Entertainment
Produced by Vashu Bhagnani, Jackky Bhagnani, Deepshikha Deshmukh
Directed by David Dhawan
Screenplay by Rumi Jaffrey
Dialogues: Farhad Samji
Music by Salim–Sulaiman
Songs by Tanishk Bagchi, Lijo George–DJ Chetas, Javed–Mohsin, Salim–Sulaiman
Cinematography by Ravi K. Chandran
Edited by Ritesh Soni
Distributed by Amazon Prime Video
BOLLYWOOD RETRO GEMS: This 1980 movie about reincarnation was one of the best reincarnation movies made in the Hindi film industry and Karz is also one of Subhash Ghai’s better made films. Fantastic song picturisation like the ‘Ek Hasina Thi’ and the eponymous ‘Om Shanti Om’ which had Rishi Kapoor dancing on a revolving LP on stage.