Akshay Kumar is a great actor, his comic timing is fab too, but somehow he doesn’t seem to fit the character of Jagdishwar Mishra aka Jolly in Subhash Kapoor’s satirical comedy Jolly LLB 2. The first part Jolly LLB had Arshad Warsi play the protagonist and he somehow fit this bill of a loser lawyer trying to find a footing. The premise of the first part was extremely organic and full of surprises unlike the current one, which is way too predictable and preachy. What’s worse is that Akshay with his tall fit frame fails to look like a LOSER. And it’s not his failure as an actor, it is just that the actor wasn’t suitable for the role. Here’s the review…
What’s it about
Those who have watched the promos would know that the film like its predecessor is about a lawyer who finds a way in life and career through a PIL (Public Interest Litigation). In this case, Jolly urf Jagdishwar Mishra is a lawyer by degree but has not fought a single case, despite working at a legal firm owned by a Nawab (Rizviji) for years. Jolly wants to be a real lawyer and not Rizviji’s 15th assistant. His only dream is to own a lawyer’s chamber and make his father proud. Unfortunately Jolly takes the easy way to make his dream come true and ends up losing respect amongst his peers. But that’s not what changes the course of Jolly’s life, he has tricked a desperate client, Hina (Sayani Gupta) seeking legal help from Rizvi’s team of lawyers to get justice for her husband Iqbal Qasim (Manav Kaul), who was shot in a fake encounter by cop Suryaveer Singh (Kumud Mishra). Jolly not only takes on Suryaveer, his top lawyer Sachin Kantilal Mathur (Annu Kapoor), but also the corrupt law and order system with this one case.
Subhash Kapoor retains some gems from his original, Saurabh Shukla (Judge Tripathy) and Sanjay Mishra (Guruji). Akshay Kumar as a lawyer is handsome and funny even in his not-so-fashionable avatar. The actor’s honesty at portraying a character that just refuses to fit him well is commendable. And even though Akshay is the hero of the film, it is the characters of Annu Kapoor and Saurabh Shukla that manage to extract the most reactions from you as an audience. Annu Kapoor as the annoying and obnoxious Mr Mathur makes you hate and laugh with him at the same time. Saurabh Shukla manages to stand tall despite his teddy frame and makes you reminisce his act in the first part.
The dialogues are funny in most parts and the makers have woven in some very obvious filmi references beautifully in the movie. Like for example, when Judge Tripathy asks Jolly to stop acting like Sunny Deol (from Damini) and then again makes another reference when he quizzes Jolly if he has indeed started behaving like Sunny Deol is damn funny. There are also some very unintentional funny moments that are typical to an Akshay Kumar comedy. In one serious exchange between Jolly and pregnant Hina, there’s a hint at Jolly getting Hina pregnant in a not so obvious way and that’s indeed dark yet laughter inducing. Or then when Jolly’s wife Pushpa Pande (Huma Qureshi) is the only one who stands up to clap on hearing her husband’s awesome dialogue delivery in the courtroom.
Even in her cameo Sayani Gupta manages to impress with her portrayal of Hina, while Huma Qureshi delivers even in her minuscule role of Akki’s wife.
In that sense, Jolly LLB 2 can be called as a “masala satirical drama”.
If you watched Jolly LLB and loved it, we bet you will miss Arshad Warsi terribly. And again let me assure you it’s not Akshay’s fault, it is the makers who get trapped in his superstar aura. There are few things that are very wrong about Subhash’s attempt at recreating the first part’s magic. JLLB2 gets extremely preachy and boring to a point where you almost end up losing focus. Some instances just don’t fit logic, like Jolly’s salary is a meagre Rs 15,000 but he’s impeccably suited. Yes, they did get Akshay to wear one sports shoes throughout the film however he’s pretty well turned out otherwise.
The storytelling itself fails miserably, ‘coz you do not empathise with Jolly or his fight against the system. Things come a little too easy to him and he manages to wriggle out of some very sticky situations a little too comfortably. The courtroom drama drags at points and fails to tickle your funny bone. Some of the punchlines are a little too inspired and lack originality. There’s also a very blatant brand plug where we see Akshay flaunt a vest that he promotes.
Looks like Subhash Kapoor who had managed to extract fabulous performances from his actors in the first part, fell into the “smitten by star” and “mainstream cinema” trap.
What to do
Reviewed by Rashma Shetty Bali
**** Very good