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Nanu Ki Jaanu movie review: Abhay Deol’s film is a bizarre ghost story

Nanu Ki Janu movie review: A couple of funny scenes are scattered here and there, but it’s mostly the out of sync acting of Abhay Deol and Patralekhaa that makes the audience giggle.

movie reviews Updated: Apr 20, 2018 19:05 IST
Rohit Vats
Rohit Vats
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Nanu Ki Jaanu,Nanu Ki Jaanu movie review,Abhay Deol
Nanu Ki Janau is a horror-comedy.

Nanu Ki Jaanu
Cast: Abhay Deol, Patralekhaa
Director: Faraz Haider
Rating: 1.5/5

A ghost knows the exact reason of her death and it was no accident, as everyone thinks. It was a miscalculation on part of Yamraj, the god of death. Somebody else was supposed to die at that very moment, but that person’s wife was really heavy on praying and visiting temples, so our poor girl had to die to keep the register ringing. Not only this, our moody ghost also knows that not wearing a helmet wasn’t probably a bright idea.

The only catch is all this happens in a sincere tone. There is no humour attempted, at least during such conversations, which leaves us wondering whether to laugh or cry.

Nanu (Abhay Deol) is a criminal who enters people’s houses as a tenant and forces them to sell them to him at throwaway prices. He has a team of sidekicks -- including a girl ready to tear her clothes – who help mount the pressure on unwilling sellers.

Read: Beyond The Clouds movie review: Majid Majidi has found a star in Ishaan Khatter

From awkwardly dancing with Sapna Choudhary at a wedding to spending nights with foreigners, Nanu does everything to look cynical. However, he isn’t totally bad because he also helps people. You know, the clichéd, sweet natured, neighbourhood mob-boss!

Poor guy suddenly loses track of his life and career as a land-grabber when he finds Siddhi (Patralekha) lying in a pool of blood on the road. He takes her to the hospital only to have an emotional outburst during her most critical moments. Mind you, it is again serious. Then she dies. The doctor doesn’t even take her to the operation theatre, preferring to announce, ‘she is no more.’ Well, we expected one clichéd electrocardiograph scene at least.

The story, effectively, begins here as Patralekha becomes a ghost and haunts Nanu. A couple of funny scenes are scattered here and there, but it’s mostly their out of sync acting that makes the audience giggle. Manu Rishi’s dialogues have a typical Delhi feel to them, but they are mostly forced.

Loosely based on Tamil film Pissasu (2014), Nanu Ki Jaanu takes refuge in ‘banana peel’ sort of humour. Occasionally it works, but mostly it irritates. The ordeal gets more painful as the film progresses.

Nanu Ki Jaanu then turns into a murder mystery where the ghost takes the centre stage. People are seen hanging from the ceiling and a desperate father (Rajesh Sharma) gets caressed by the chimney-loving ghost in the most bizarre way possible. In order to talk to the ghost, he even gets on his hands and knees, and begins chasing her behind refrigerator and drawers.

It’s far from over as you’re expected to witness miracles, change of hearts and a weird lecture on morals and duties. None of this is intentionally funny.

Thankfully, there is a cameo by Manoj Pahwa. He shines and brings us some relief, but it’s probably too late by then. By then, there is hardly anything left to trick our minds into believing that this film can be saved. After all, there is Abhay Deol. Alas!

Nanu Ki Jaanu is 132-minute of convoluted chaos. Some talented actors are wasted and some are given a free run to waste their talent. This is certainly not what we expected.

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First Published: Apr 20, 2018 11:53 IST