Rajeev Masand’s Review of 102 Not Out

Cast: Amitabh Bachchan, Rishi Kapoor, Jimit Trivedi

Director: Umesh Shukla

Let’s just face it Hindi cinema doesn’t know what to do with senior citizens. Bollywood is obsessed with youth, and older characters are usually relegated to the background. Occasionally a film like Piku will come along to remind us that there’s more to old people than just wrinkles and dentures, but you can count films with older protagonists on your fingertips. 

102 Not Out, directed by Umesh Shukla and based on a Gujarati stage play by Soumya Joshi, is a father-son story with a twist. The twist being that the father, Dattatrey Vakharia, played by Amitabh Bachchan, is an evergreen 102-year-old with a zest for life, while his son, Babulal Vakharia, played by Rishi Kapoor, is a 75-year-old curmudgeon with a permanent scowl on his face, and forever anxious about his health.

The film pits father and son against each other, and on multiple occasions…some harmless and innocent, like Dattatrey’s attempts to draw Babu out of his shell; others more intense and with lingering consequences. The film is basically a three-hander, with Dhiru, the friendly neighborhood medicine delivery guy, played by Jimit Trivedi, starring as the poor third wheel, stuck between the sparring men.

It’s an interesting premise, and there’s a real thrill in watching seasoned actors like Amitabh Bachchan and Rishi Kapoor having a go at each other. Expectedly they’re the lifeline of this film, which is otherwise too shrill, too simplistic, and feels too much like a stage play. Shukla, who also adapted the Akshay Kumar-Paresh Rawal starrer Oh My God! from a theatre production, confines the bulk of the drama to the Vakharia home. Much of the humor is infantile, and the pitching way too loud. Especially Bachchan’s character, Dattatrey, who comes off as a tireless Energizer bunny without a volume button. Bachchan is great in the quieter moments, and his chemistry with his co-star is endearing.

Rishi Kapoor’s character Babulal is the one who gets the arc, and the actor makes the most of it. Both in scenes of comedy and high drama, he delivers a measured, affecting performance. The real joy of 102 Not Out is watching the two senior actors riffing off each other. Like a scene in which Dattatrey gets Babulal to write a love letter to his dead wife – it’s flat-out hilarious.

Ultimately the film glosses over the real messiness of old age, sticking to an upbeat, cheery take on aging. To be fair though, they never claimed they were making Michael Haneke’s Amour. Despite its many shortcomings 102 Not Out has its heart in the right place, and a pair of actors clearly enjoying themselves on screen. Their infectious energy alone makes this film worth a watch.

I’m going with three out of five.

Did you like this blog?*
How did you find this blog?*
What kind of articles would you like to read on the blog?*

1 Comment

  1. g s mani

    May 5, 2018 at 5:39 pm

    i have gone through reiview and seen the movie i am 65 years old,seen the movie with interest after long time with a social message to senior cirizens ot take care of themselves with lively life and use the money and time to  enjoy the life with sorroundings and with nature and natural life.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in Rajeev Masand

  • Rajeev Masand’s Review of Omerta

    Cast: Rajkummar Rao, Keval Arora, Rajesh Tailang, Blake Allan Director: Hansal Mehta In his new film Omerta, director Hansal Mehta seeks to dive into...

    BMS EditorMay 5, 2018
  • Rajeev Masand’s Review of Avengers: Infinity War

    Cast: Robert Downey Jr, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Chris Pratt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Don Cheadle, Tom Holland, Chadwick Boseman, Zoe...

    BMS EditorApril 26, 2018
  • Rajeev Masand’s Film Review of Beyond The Clouds

    Cast: Ishaan Khattar, Malavika Mohanan, Goutam Ghose, Tannishtha Chatterjee, GV Sharada, Amruta Santosh Thakur, Shivam Pujari Director: Majid Majidi Iranian master Majid Majidi,...

    BMS EditorApril 21, 2018
  • Rajeev Masand’s Film Review of October

    Cast: Varun Dhawan, Banita Sandhu, Gitanjali Rao Director: Shoojit Sircar October, directed by Shoojit Sircar, is a thoughtful, meditative film about...

    BMS EditorApril 13, 2018
  • Rajeev Masand’s Film Review of Blackmail

    Cast: Irrfan Khan, Kirti Kulhari, Arunoday Singh, Divya Dutta, Pradhuman Singh, Anjula Sathe, Gajraj Rao, Omi Vaidya, Vibha Chibbar, Neelima Azim Director: Abhinay...

    BMS EditorApril 6, 2018
  • Rajeev Masand’s Film Review of Baaghi 2

    Cast: Tiger Shroff, Disha Patani, Manoj Bajpayee, Randeep Hooda, Deepak Dobriyal, Prateik Babbar, Darshan Kumaar, Vipin Sharma Director: Ahmed Khan. A distraught young...

    BMS EditorApril 5, 2018
  • Rajeev Masand’s Film Review Of Pacific Rim Uprising

    Cast: John Boyega, Scott Eastwood, Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day, Cailee Spaeny, Burn Gorman Director: Steven S DeKnight I’m one of those who thoroughly...

    BMS EditorMarch 24, 2018
  • Rajeev Masand’s Film Review Of Hichki

    Cast: Rani Mukerji, Neeraj Kabi, Sachin Pilgaonkar, Supriya Pilgaonkar, Harsh Mayar Director: Siddharth P Malhotra There is nothing original, nothing surprising, nothing even...

    BMS EditorMarch 24, 2018
  • Rajeev Masand’s Film Review of The Square

    Cast: Claes Bang, Elizabeth Moss, Terry Notary, Dominic West, Christopher Læssø Director: Ruben Östlund The Square, the new film from Swedish writer-director Ruben...

    BMS EditorMarch 16, 2018

All articles/blogs are intended to inform, entertain and amuse. We make no representations or guarantees about the truth, accuracy or quality of any content.

Copyright 2018 © Bigtree Entertainment Pvt. Ltd. All Rights Reserved

Subscribe To Our Newsletter
Subscribe to our email newsletter today to receive updates on the latest news!
Thank You For Subscribing To Us!

Now get regular updates on the latest entertainment news and style trends.

Providing you with the best of Bollywood, Hollywood, style and more.
Get the best in entertainment, while keeping yourself entertained!
We respect your privacy. Your information is safe and will never be shared.
Don't miss out. Subscribe today.
WordPress Popup