Wah Taj review: A well-intentioned story lost in stereotypes

  • Sweta Kaushal, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Sep 23, 2016 10:36 IST
At scripting stage, Wah Taj could have been a good watch, but what we see onscreen is totally avoidable.

Wah Taj
Director: Ajit Sinha
Cast: Shreyas Talpade, Manjari Fadnis
Rating: 1.5/5

A social worker will spot a huge bindi and wear well-pleated sarees, politicians are all about giving fire to chaos till they can use it to their own benefit, cops don’t care for crimes and media houses are all about getting TRPs. Sounds like a stereotypical story for a Bollywood satire. Alas, Ajit Sinha’s Wah Taj does not come across as the satire-comedy it aims to be.

Shreyas and Manjari are good in parts, but the melodrama keeps them from being convincing.

The film starts with Shreyas Talpade and Manjari Fadnis trying to enter Taj Mahal on a tractor with the plan to shift base. Yes, they have their entire household luggage with them, including a Krishna idol and a khat (country-made cot). The antics of a Marathi couple claiming its ownership on Taj Mahal, the media frenzy built around the claim and politicians and social workers jumping in the arena for some amusement and profit could have made for a fun watch had the filmmaker established his characters well.

Alas, Ajit Sinha’s Wah Taj does not come across as the satire-comedy it aims to be.

The film does not pause a bit to build up its characters, leaving the audience totally uninterested. We don’t empathise with the poor farmer couple struggling for the land and we don’t laugh at their smart one-liners because they are too cliched.

If we try to find good things about the movie, the intentions definitely come first on the small list. The courtroom scene too, can be there. The judge’s reactions and the lawyers’ arguments are fun to watch.

As for performances, Shreyas and Manjari are good in parts, but the melodrama keeps them from being convincing. The other actors are mostly overacting, completely killing the film.

At scripting stage, Wah Taj could have been a good watch, but what we see onscreen is totally avoidable.

The writer tweets at @SwetaKaushal

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