Once you watch Total Dhamaal, it is hard to imagine that director Indra Kumar had once made movies like Aamir Khan and Madhuri Dixit’s Dil (1990) or Madhuri Dixit and Anil Kapoor’s Beta (1992). Even in the early 2000s, his films like Masti (2004), Dhamaal (2007), were not just watchable, but enjoyable in parts too. However, in recent years, with films like Grand Masti (2013) and Great Grand Masti (2016), his filmmaking skills made me wonder if he has lost his touch! And now, with his most recent multi-starrer, Total Dhamaal, my concerns have increased tenfold.
There are bad movies, there are movies that are so bad that they are good and then comes the Mount Rushmore of bad movies – Total Dhamaal has made it to the worst of the worst. The writing is terrible, dialogues are cringeworthy, script is all over the place, songs are underwhelming and randomly placed, characters are poorly developed, cinematography and CGI are just sad and honestly, I could go on and on.
But the worst part is… wait for it… the HUMOUR! While there are still a few jokes that might give you an occasional chuckle in the first half, every bit of filmmaking goes for a toss in the second half. Forget plot, performances, continuity, the basic aspect of an adventure comedy is to make you laugh and dazzle you at the same time. Total Dhamaal does neither.
The only good thing about the film, but not by a mile, is Anil Kapoor and Madhuri Dixit’s on-screen chemistry. While their dialogues are as terrible as the rest of the characters got, some of their banter and their portrayal of a mismatched married couple is at times a welcome relief. Riteish Deshmukh too is funny at times but suffers from the same issue of terrible character development and awful dialogues.
While Ajay Devgn has done such mindless comedies with Rohit Shetty (the Golmaal series), but even for him, Total Dhamaal is a new low. Arshad Warsi and Jaaved Jaaferi’s ‘Adi-Manav’ were endearing in the first Dhamaal film, this one is a tragic excuse of their potential for comedy.
Overall, the film gives quite the ’90s nostalgia, but in the worst way possible. Remember the terrible comedies from the ’90s like Duplicate, King Uncle and others? Total Dhamaal is worse than them. Though, it is obvious that I didn’t enjoy the film and was just constantly looking at my watch, waiting for the film to get over, but, take this review with a pinch of salt. Because, there were others in the movie theatre, who did crack up more times than one should while watching this film. So, if you enjoyed films like Golmaal 3 or Great Grand Masti, check out Total Dhamaal as well. Who knows, you might just find it enjoyable enough.