Happy Bhaag Jayegi is a clean feel-good comic movie. That in itself shouldn’t be a big deal but it is. I can’t recall the last proper Bollywood funny-movie (not indie) which did not have
- Rohit Shetty type stunts and general over-the-topness
- Akshay Kumar or Ajay Devgan’s by-now old routines or cast with Aftab’s, Ritesh Deshmukh’s, Shreyas Talpade and co.
- A group of scantily clad bimbettes on the poster with not much of a role
- Making fun of dumb/deaf/injured people, or those with accents or cuckolded husbands doing a slapstick routine (I’m looking at you Tanu Weds Manu 2)
- General innuendo-ish or toilet humour
Basically something beyond the Golmaal or Housefull stereotypes.
I realise I sound like the ultimate urban Indian snob while writing all this – but if you’ve watched Happy Bhaag Jayegi you’ll realise that isn’t the case. Again, as with Madari – it’s not a great movie. But it’s a very very refreshing movie in this genre in Bollywood.
The plot is simple enough. The girl Happy wants to run away from a marriage she’s forced into. She ends up in Pakistan. Her true love, her forced love and her dad want to rescue her. The Pakistani family she’s landed up in wants to send her back without too much of a fuss. Cue standard confusion routines which you can probably see some distance away and a climax borrowed from any Priyadarshan book. But it’s been done very sensitively. I especially liked (really liked, as in made me happy) that they showed Pakistani’s as pretty normal people. The characters are all a little dumb and except for Abhay Deol, very one dimensional. But they’re nice to each other – even the supposed villains. The acting seems decent enough without being outrageously good or bad. There are plot holes, but you know you’re not watching a very realistic movie anyways (unlike Madari for example), so I found myself more willing to ignore them. And I came out feeling quite happy and in a good mood.
Good enough 🙂