CHATUR SINGH TWO STAR

Being made to watch Chatur Singh Two Star is like serving a jail sentence. This over-two-hour film starring Sanjay Dutt as a bumbling cop is bad in so many ways that one could fill a notebook listing down all its flaws. In a nutshell, it’s a third-rate script in the hands of a director with no apparent skills, and featuring an ensemble of ham artistes who aren’t easily embarrassed. 

Ironically the only bright spot is Dutt himself who appears to be having fun with his part. As the imbecile police officer who must travel to South Africa to track a cache of missing diamonds, Dutt resorts to much buffoonery including outlandish disguises, childish gags, and a generous dose of overacting. Yet, anyone who’s watched Dutt sleepwalk through most of his recent films will be grateful that at least he’s trying here. 

The same, unfortunately, can’t be said for the film’s writer Rumi Jafri, whose incoherent, lazy script involves the murder of Gulshan Grover, a corrupt politician; the framing of that murder on Amisha Patel, his innocent secretary; and subsequently the hunt for those expensive gems. The dialogue is positively low-IQ, and the jokes are pedestrian. But most tiresome of all is the repeatedly brainless banter between the cop and his annoying sidekick, played by the usually dependable Suresh Menon. Also making complete fools of themselves are fine actors like Anupam Kher, Satish Kaushik, and Sanjay Mishra who are called upon to add to the mayhem with over-the-top performances. 

The film’s climax – if you have the courage to stay until then – involves the entire cast dressed in animal suits chasing after the diamonds. You’ll have to pinch yourself to believe that this isn’t some bad dream you’re having! 

Director Ajay Chandok models Dutt’s character after Inspector Clouseau from the Pink Panther movies, but there is none of that endearing naiveté that Peter Sellers brought to the part. It’s replaced by annoying stupidity.

The makers of this film had to be feeling very optimistic when they arrived at the title Chatur Singh Two Star. In all honesty, it doesn’t deserve more than one! I’m going with a generous one out of five for director Ajay Chandok’s Chatur Singh Two Star. Strictly avoidable. Unless you’re one for self-punishment.

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