Cast: Emraan Hashmi, Randeep Hooda, Esha Gupta, Manish Choudhary
Direction: Kunal Deshmukh
Emraan Hashmi is back on the silver screen to once again find his “Jannat” on earth but though this so-called-sequel has an engaging lore, it remains trapped in the bowels of some googly-eyed Bolly romance.
Sonu Dilli (Emraan Hashmi) is an illegal arms dealer with ample amount of street smarts and a silver tongue. So you know the “Raaz” of the peppy one-liners now! All starts well for this “bi-ness”man until he suddenly decides to fall in love with Jhanvi (Esha Gupta) (with a stress on the word ‘suddenly’).
But madam doctor has a simple life of healing people for free and wants a regular guy and so our comic criminal has to reform himself.
But despite the obvious problems of finding a good job for an ex-con these days, those problems are hardly of any consideration to Mr. “Kutti Kameeni Cheez” aka Sonu who faces the whip from ACP Pratap Raghuvanshi (Randeep Hooda) and is forced to become an informer.
Now Sonu’s life stands on a knife edge and he must find a way to escape the murky alleys of Delhi to a new life with his lady love.
Though touted as a sequel Jannat 2 is a standalone venture with just the leading man and the director as common to the 2008 blockbuster and sadly this crime thriller has one of the most age old diseases of Bollywood thrillers- “love at first sight”.
Yup it had its soul in the right place and had a gripping premise for something of a novelty in Bollywood but alas romantic ‘tamasha’ got the better of it. No I am not saying that Jannat 2 offers some mind-blowing insight into the previously uncharted territory of arms dealing rackets but it did have the foothold.
All went wrong when Sonu fell in love and the forced doses of romantic sweeteners made this otherwise tangy offering somewhat less edible.
So you have the gripping sequences with some predictable/unpredictable twists and a bold epilogue but the infraction caused by hand holding, coffee slurping and singing-dancing romance takes the charm away from what could have been a rather quirky crime thriller.
Having said that however, Jannat 2 does have its hooks and does manage to keep you engaged despite mild annoyances (which includes some stupid character sketches- a young lady doctor managing a large clinic in Delhi with no idea of funds? What the hell!).
The direction and technique
Jannat is a sleazy entertaining watch so far as visual prowess is concerned.
The camera drags you through alleys, dargas and even offers a small dose of desi parkour on the rooftops; yeah you will sweat with the characters and that’s not in a bad sense either.
The tight screenplay in parts where the crime thriller comes out of being a mere backdrop is a delight to watch as well, not to mention the slightly off the rocker ending.
Thumbs up to director Kunal Deshmukh for milking as much possible from what was intended just as a backdrop through effective cinematic handling but for the lovey-dovey parts I have just one word-cliché!
Emraan Hashmi is lovable as the peculiar goon who is adept in the art of “bahane banana” (making excuses). Though sometimes the heavy North Indian accent takes the better of him, through most parts he appears convincing and a constant source of delight with his eclectic mix of one liners and dramatic dialogues.
Esha Gupta as the leading lady has just one job- to look beautiful and she does that inexplicably well with a perennial smile pasted on her face for most part of the movie; did someone say acting? Well if a few scowls and some tears with weirdly delivered lines mean acting then Miss Gupta has nailed it. If not, then…. Let’s leave it at that.
The real stunner was Randeep as the bad-ass cop. He appears sinister when he needs to and just as easily swivels back to the emote chair. If you haven’t seen the “D” man before then this is your chance to catch him in action.
For a few other muscle flexing cops in Bollywood, this lean mean drunk cop has a few lessons to teach (and he has a bullet stuck in his head!!)
The rest of the cast are credible too but sometimes Manish Chaudhary as the evil boss goes over the top with his settled frowns and weird stares. Not scary just odd!
Jannat 2 is another musical marvel much like its predecessor. Songs like “Tu Hi Mera” or “Zara Sa” will surely capture your auditory fancies.
The background scores are also much in tune with the rest of the movie lending a subtle but effective punch.
So should you go in search of this Jannat?
Well the movie is an entertainer despite some cheap banal frills and if you enjoy some gripping action or some age old Bolly romance Jannat 2 is the one for you.
But if you are the rather serious type who demands depth without distractions then stay away from the theatres this weekend.