‘Arjun Patiala’ Is a Joke Without a Punchline
Diljit Dosanjh and Varun Sharma play police officers in <i>Arjun Patiala</i>.
Diljit Dosanjh and Varun Sharma play police officers in Arjun Patiala.(Photo: Altered by The Quint)

‘Arjun Patiala’ Is a Joke Without a Punchline


Well, guess the joke is on us! If the trailer gave you the impression that Arjun Patiala would boast of some genuinely smart writing and funny moments then let’s laugh at our own gullibility. All that was funny has already been packed into the two-minute long trailer – so this film is nothing but a hollow husk of randomness !

Arjun Patiala (Diljit Dosanjh) is a police sub-inspector. When he leaves for his new post to Firozpur, his daddy ji gives him“asheervaad (blessings)” by gifting him a bottle
bottle of whisky. People want solid advice but instead that’s all he got because “Nayi jagah mein theke dhundna mushkil hota hai. (It’s difficult to find a liquor store in a new city.)” Arjun himself uses words like BC (short for bad characters) and HK (haramkhor) to describe the anti-social elements of his town, an example of the film’s juvenile comedy. Writers Ritesh Shah and Sandeep Leyzell have prove to be amazingly ineffectual with their punches while director Rohit Jugra seems to have left things on autopilot.

It’s all very well to appear self aware, meta and spoof the typical trajectory of Bollywood masala comedies by giving us a heads up about “khamakha ka item number” before an unnecessary Sunny Leone song or turn the fight between the hero and villain into a video game face off, but if you have nothing new to say, or as in this case, nothing to say at all, it seems like a futile exercise.

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Kriti Sanon plays Arjun Patiala’s love interest and a TV journalist. No great jokes here except her “crime reporting and investigation” is laughable. Varun Sharma as police officer Onida Singh has the same likeable air that made him a household name but the sloppy writing hardly does justice to his talent. Still Diljit and Varun have an endearing presence together. Kriti and her vowel-swallowing attempt at trying to sound Punjabi with words like “puls” for police and “sport” for support only make matters worse.

Mohammad Zeeshan Ayub, Pankaj Tripathi, Abhishek Banerji, Ronit Roy and Seema Pahwa have nothing substantial to do. It’s just a tragedy to see good actors wasted like this. Arjun Patiala makes such a big deal about being different when it couldn’t even get the basics right.

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