A Run for Fun

Review of Bollywood movie Happy Bhag Jayegi by G9 Divya Solgama

Director Anand L. Rai debuted in our Hindi films with a Hitchcock inspired psychological thriller film ‘Strangers’, starring Jimmy Shergil. The movie despite of being a decent adaptation failed to create any wonders followed by another disaster in form of ‘Thoda Life Thoda Magic’. These failures helped him to find his real side. He returned back after a long spell of three years with a surprise hit in the form of Kangana Ranaut’s ‘Tanu Weds Manu’. This movie marked the real arrival of this director who gave us more films like ‘Raanjhanaa’ and ‘Tanu Weds Manu Returns’. Audience loved the simplicity in these films, which also motivated him to produce more feel-good films. After giving us critically acclaimed ‘Nil BatteySannata’, he returns back with yet another film ‘Happy Bhaag Jayegi’. The movie marks the return of AbhayDeol and ‘Cocktail’ starrer Diana Penty, after a long gap. Thus, let’s find out whether director Anand L. Rai will manage to give us yet another feel-good entertainer or might end up delivering a stale product showcasing the saccharine relationship between people of India & Pakistan.

Happy Bhaag Jayegi-fiji‘Happy Bhaag Jayegi’ is a story of a daring girl Harpreet Kaur/Happy (Diana Penty), who is getting married to a local corporator Daman Singh Bagga (Jimmy Shergill). Happy decides to elope with her lover Guddu (Ali Fazal) and in that process, accidently, lands up in Pakistan. Out there she meets Bilal Ahmed (Abhay Deol), who belongs to a political family. Bilal decides to help Happy in order to keep this matter guarded. He seeks support from his fiancée Zoya (Momal Sheikh) and A.C.P Usman Afridi (Piyush Mishra). What happens next is what the entire film is all about.

The story is simple but if you go into the detailing it is a bit complicated. The first half is totally entertaining thanks to fantastic support by Piyush Mishra and Jimmy Shergill. There are many enjoyable scenes like Abhay playing cricket with kids in India, Diana’s confrontation with Piyush Mishra, Momal’s telephonic conversation with Jimmy Shergill, AbhayDeol and Piyush Mishra’s meet with Jimmy followed by convincing Ali Fazal, Piyush and Ali’s discussing Urdu over drinks and few more. These scenes keeps the smiling face intact throughout the first half of the film. Sadly, the second half fails to match up to the high standards set by the first half of the film. The movie starts to drag and crawls ahead with confusing screenplay without any proper detailing nor justification.

The writers fail to etch the required detailing in Abhay’s character and his feelings towards Diana. Though, Abhay sharing his views about Diana by giving example of Madhubala and Momal expressing her feelings to Abhay reminds you of Anand L. Rai’s emotional styling and manages to make its proper mark. The finale is a bit hurried and cluttered. Kanwaljit Singh’s track becomes illogical and goofy after a while. If only the second half of the movie would have been as engaging or entertaining as the first half, this movie would have ended up being among one of the finest entertainer in recent time. The dialogues are soothing and you will love the small instances like Jimmy bragging about the marriage, Piyush’s fascination towards Urdu and Pakistan, Javed Sheikh constant thinking about history of Pakistan and few more. The cinematography is good and works in the favour of the film.

Music has always been an integral part of Anand L. Rai’s films and out here also, it shines out with ‘Yaaram’, ‘Aashiq Tera’ and ‘Zara Si Dosti’. The end credit song fails to gel with the flow of the film.

Director Mudassar Aziz returns back after a long gap. His last film despite of having stars like Sushmita Sen, Fardeen Khan and Shah Rukh Khan in an extended appearance, failed to create any impact. Luckily, out here one finds a huge difference thanks to the guidance of Anand L. Rai as the movie has many positive points to cherish. The initial detailing of the supporting actors works in the favour of the film. Sadly, the detailing in the lead characters (Abhay and Diana) is weak and abrupt. As the movie progresses, many other characters are left abrupt and underutilized. If only the finale part would have been bit more entertaining or less cluttered the impact would had been high. Nevertheless, he ends up delivering a feel-good film catering to universal audience.

Abhay Deol looks great and does his part with grace. Though, his character required more depth and detailing. Daina Penty is charming and surprises you with her command over her character. Her character also lacked the depth and detailing, especially in the second half of the film. Jimmy Shergill is outstanding. He shines out through his personality and attitude in the film. Ali Fazal lends good support but hams a bit in the comical scenes. Momal Sheikh looks good and does full justice to her character. Piyush Mishra is amazingly funny and would have loved to see more of him in the film. Kanwaljit Singh and Javed Sheikh lend decent support in the film.

So on an overall basis, ‘Happy Bhaag Jayegi’ is an amusing stroll to this funny world and manages to leave a smile on your face. The enjoyable moments in the first half of the movie are enough for the audience to accept this film, despite of mellow second half and weak characterization.

Rating – 3.5/5 (Review source – Cinemarkets)