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By Subhrajeet Ganguly
By Subhrajeet Ganguly

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ENRE: Action- comedy

Duration: 2.33 hour

Cast: John Abraham, Shruti Hasan, Nana Patekar, Anil Kapoor, Paresh Rawal, Ankita Srivastava, Dimple Kapadia, Naseeruddin Shah and Shiney Ahuja

SHOWS IN KOLKATA : Inox-Quest Mall (9 am, 10 am, 11.05 am, 12.10 pm, 1.10 pm, 2.20 pm, 3.35 pm, 4.25 pm, 5.35 pm, 6.40 pm, 7.40 pm, 8.50 pm, 9.55 pm, 10.55 pm),

PVR- Avani, Howrah (9 am 10 am, 12.10 pm, 1.10 pm, 3.20 pm, 4.20 pm, 6.30 pm, 7.30 pm, 9.40 pm, 10.40 pm), Navina (10.15 am, 3.45 pm, 6.30 pm, 9.15 pm),

Prachi (2.30 pm, 7.45 pm),  New Empire (12.15 pm, 6 pm, 4.35 pm, 7.30 pm), Ajanta (9.30 am, 11 am, 12.20 pm, 3.10 pm, 6 pm, 8.45 pm).

WELCOME BACK is a comedy moulded in drama and action sequences. If you compare this film with its prequel (Welcome, released in 2007), you are sure to notice unwanted use of computer generated images to fill the screenplay.

Director Anees Bazmee has brought John Abraham in place of Akshay Kumar and Shruti Hasan replacing Katrina Kaif.  The film also has veterans like Naseeruddin Shah and Dimple Kapadia.

The film introduces Ajju Bhai (played by John) with the song Main babli hui, tu banti hua, band kamre mein phir 20-20 hua, a foot tapping composition by Anu Malik.

Uday Shetty (played by Nana Patekar) and Majnu Bhai (played by Anil Kapoor) have continued with their superb flow of humour in this sequel as well. By the way, they have now retired from the Underworld and are settled in Dubai.

Yet their concern remains: marrying off their sister to a decent guy. The sister this time is Ranjana (played by Shruti).

The film tries to blend humour with emotion by penetrating into the family of Dr. Ghungru (played by Paresh Rawal). It shows an affair of Ghungru’s wife whose illegitimate son is Ajju Bhai (John).

As regards Paresh Rawal’s character, it sparks off with punchy one-liners like jab main chunav mein vote dala hi nahi to mukhyamantri mera kaise ho gaya (when I have not caste vote in the election then how come the Chief Minister belongs to me)!

The director has again made Uday and Majnu to fall in fall for the same girl Poonam (played by Ankita Srivastava) daughter of Babita (played by Dimple), the queen and princess of Nazafgarh. In the prequel, a similar character was named Laila and was played by Mallika Sherawat.

Babita sets a precondition for marrying off Poonam to either Uday or Majnu: first marry off your sister (who is in love with Ajju Bhai who has a decent record in crime!)

The biggest loss for the film is the unutilised talent of Naseeruddin Shah (he plays the character of a semi-blind don Wanted Bhai). His role is shoddily written and lacks the essence of RDX that was played by Feroz Khan in Welcome.

Not only this, the screenplay writers have given a meagre screen presence to Shiney Ahuja in the role of Honey, son of Wanted Bhai.

Welcome Back has much better dialogues compared to other action sequences of the past few years, but obtrusive background scores is sure to distract you.

The director has spent much of his efforts on the grandeur of set than the chemistry of characters. Songs of the movie are like encounters that arrive without an alarm.

But what saves the film is the timing of one-liners. The conversation between Nana Patekar and Paresh Rawal will throw stones of laughter on you.

(Subhrajeet Ganguly is an independent video-editor based in Kolkata)