Film Review: Dhol



Cast: Sharman Joshi, Tusshar Kapoor, Kunal Khemu, Tanushree Datta, Rajpal Yadav and Payal Rohatgi


Director: Priyadarshan


Producer: Percept Picture Company


Rating: 1.5 / 5


It is beyond belief that the man who gave us films like Virasat, Kala Paani and even Hera Pheri could give us something like Dhol. Loud, dull and boring Dhol is an insipid fare that does not become the director’s illustrious portfolio or ability to churn out good comedies.

The film, which promises to be a complete time-pass comic caper fails on several counts; the biggest one being that it is half-baked. In trying to get the best of both worlds of comedy and suspense it remains true to none. The laughs are not funny enough and suspense not thrilling enough affording the audience an incomplete experience which they won’t know what to make of.

The film combines the quest of four jobless guys for quick money (read a rich girl to marry) with the rich girl’s quest for the answer to her brother’s suspicious death. The ensuing events bring comedy of errors, slapstick, buffoonery, one-liners, all under one roof to provide the necessary laughs. The quest of both converges in the quest of the villain for a dhol forcing the rest of the pieces to fall in place in the end in the usual way of popular comedies these days.

Once again, it is the script and screenplay which lets the film down in a major way. Not only does it lack punch and the treatment is indulgent but the pace is slow. The proceedings are quick in succession but the events in themselves are tedious and don’t help the narrative in anyway. The back and forth between the two tracks of comedy and suspense provide more disconnection rather than engagement.

Another factor that helps this disengagement are dialogues that are more tedious to follow than the proceedings. In an attempt to attain the perfect one-liner the writer has made himself completely un-understandable. Allusions, similes and sentence constructions are too twisted for a comedy that depends on the audience’s instant relating to them helping the characters endearing themselves to the audience in return.

The central characters are full of done-to-death clichés without any definitions. And whatever there are, are poorly drawn. The success of comedies depends as much on smart scripts and one-liners, as it does on smart, distinct characterisations. Pick any comic film and this will be proven true. Sadly, Dhol doesn’t bother itself too much on that aspect at all.

It is to the credit of the principal cast that they pull off their roles with some energetic performances. Tushhar Kapoor and Sharman Joshi once again prove their mettle for comedy while Kunal Khemu proves his versatility in handling his maiden comic venture. Rajpal Yadav is himself and is enjoyable if you like his brand of performance. But he will need to get his act together soon if he does not want to tire his audiences with his routine hamming. Murli Sharma as the ‘dangerous’ don Zicomo completely fails to scare owing again to no attention to his character or mannerisms. Tanushree Dutta does her pretty prop act well except that she needs a good make-up artiste ASAP. She could do with a stylist as well She is seen sporting 90’s style clothes that were last seen on Sridevi and what looked good on her don’t on Tanushree. If your heroine is a mere pretty prop then one would think her styling does require a little more investment.

Technically the film is average with no scope for good looking visuals adding to the narrative. Music by Pritam is an awe-inspiring disappointment. Unhummable and loud, no two tracks are distinguishable. Editing again is indulgent and almost bookish. It misses the whole point of a comedy and a suspense pulling the whole film down. Sound design is incredibly amateurish with decibel levels hitting the roof, making splashes in the pool sound like sea-storms.

The film does not have enough value to recover initials even at B and C centres. For a typical masala comedy which follows every rule in the Bollywood formula library, this is a let-down. Maybe more attention to some basic elements of films would help the makers next time round.

For all you viewers, avoid it by all means. This Dhol is empty. Nothing in there for you.