Cast: Arshad Warsi, Boman Irani, Saurabh Shukla
Director: Subhash Kapoor
The predictable and clichéd story that isn’t all bad, Jolly LLB is fit for those who can bear with Bollywood checklists for success. A powerful cast, romance, tragedy, drama, music, and lots of sobs, the film manages to squeeze a little action too. A curry of filmy spices, this film fits for a family watch on a free evening. A comparatively shorter film, it’s a light watch with a social message that won’t weigh you down.
The first half of the film builds the base; therefore it’s slightly slow and makes you slightly antsy. The chemistry between Amrita Rao and Warsi seems sugar-coated and forced. In fact, Rao is just there as an unnecessary female lead, something that any dramatic Hindi film just has to have. Awkwardly placed songs and weirdly flowery romance actually stretch the simple beginning. Wisecracks and one-liners make you chuckle but nothing noteworthy happens in the slow first half.
The second half of the film is when the story picks up. Rao is brushed aside and the true conflict between Warsi and Irani takes over. Filmy court scenes, entertaining verbal spats and full-fledged sarcasm take over. You secretly thank the director and are in for hilarious moments. What ruins the second half are the unnecessary emotional-touchy moments that are used in almost every courtroom drama.
The film definitely changes its pace when Shukla and Irani come to real acting. The interaction between the two leaves the audience hooting and cheering or laughing like maniacs. Warsi is pretty much overshadowed by the two and Rao practically disappears. The supporting cast- the brother-in-law, the tea stall owner, the police, and witnesses- play their parts well and help with the story of the film.
The plotline runs on many satirical scenes that are exaggerated and were quite predictable. Corrupt cops, conniving lawyers, and henchmen who are ready to beat up anyone are thrown in the story. These elements and characters have been covered by almost every film on the legislature and judicial system of the nation. These tiny touches only lengthen the film, which could have been even shorter.
When it comes to the soundtrack of the film, the songs are completely irrelevant to the story (inexcusable no matter how catchy) and bore you. It follows the no-fail formula- a romantic number, a hilarious satirical song, a song on the hero, and attraction song. These are the songs where people get up and go to the bathroom.
A mediocre film on the judiciary system of the nation, it is a film that is more emotional than legal. Many scenes taking place in a courtroom were not at all realistic or believable. The growth of the protagonist’s character was neither new nor creative.
Irani is the one who wows you with his strong presence and mean appeal. He is the villain but he is just doing his job. You want to hate him but he is too powerful to be disliked. Then comes Shukla, an extremely sarcastic but wise judge who keeps you giggling and clapping. His accurate performance as an aging judge is not only impressive, it’s hilarious.
If you cannot bear with the melodrama and annoyingly placed songs, watch for some balanced performances and the everyday humor. This film will take your mind off serious things and entertain you.
The film may be predictable but an underdog rising above the mediocre life, come on, who wouldn’t like that?
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