Yamla Pagla Deewana: A comedy entertainer

Producers: Nitin Manmohan, Sameer Karnik.
Director: Sameer Karnik.
Dharmendra, Sunny Deol, Bobby Deol, Kulraj Randhawa, Nafisa Ali, Anupam Kher.

MUMBAI: Yamla Pagla Deewana is a trip back into the 60s and 70s cinema; L is for laughter here and L for logic be damned. Since Hindi comedies depend on gags, usually borrowed from foreign films, the trick is to piece them together. This film borrows generously from foreign as well as Hindi films of all hues.

Sunny Deol is a Sikh settled in Canada, living with his wife, mother and kids when he learns that his father and younger brother (Dharmendra and Bobby Deol) are in Benaras and are known con men. Dharmendra has walked out on his wife, Nafisa Ali, with Bobby, the younger of his two sons for no plausible reason - the first signal not to expect sense. He has turned his son also into a petty con man; both eat, drink and womanise together like buddies. Down comes Sunny Deol, wanting to trace his father and brother.

In his pursuit to get his father and brother back, Sunny Deol joins their con team. But that is not what the film is about, though that‘s what you may think! Even while Sunny Deol is working on winning over his people, the younger one spots Kulraj Randhawa, clicking pictures with her camera all over Benaras Ghats and falls for her.

What follows is what the film is supposed to be, a comedy entertainer. The brothers decide to embark, later joined in by the father and others, on the girl‘s ruthless Sikh family which shoots first and asks questions later. Well, what follows is not unseen in many films before.

For a comedy, Yamla Pagla Deewana takes its own time to get down to business; the 70-plus minute first half meanders a lot and, hence, is dull. The post interval part, with 80-plus minute of running time, does have some funny moments and dramatics but those are few and far in-between besides being repetitive. 

The characterisation of actors is comic book brand; except Sunny Deol, all others are caricatures. The film has had its curiosity value because of Dharmendra, and his enthusiasm is overwhelming; wish he had a range and few variations to his role. Sunny Deol is his usual self, a muscled mass, convincing all the way with all that he does. Kulraj Randhawa is a non performer. Bobby Deol leads the hamming brigade with Anumapm Kher following suit. The rest are incidental.

Direction by Samir Karnik is aimless; no restraint on scenes, they just carry on. Editing is poor. Musically, expectedly, the one song that holds the score is the old Laxmikant Pyarelal tune, Main jatt yamala pagala deewana, which is the signature tune as well as the mainstay of the film.

YPD is an average entertainer, which caters to the single screen. It has better prospects in the North.

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