Movie Review: ‘Ekkees Topon Ki Salaami’ by Neha Ravindran

Movie: Ekkees Topon ki Salaami
Director: Ravindra Gautam
Cast: Anupam Kher, Divyendu Sharma, Manu Rishi, Aditi Sharma, Neha Dhupia
Genre: Comedy/satire
Satires are a comic take on the otherwise serious issues relentlessly plaguing our society. But the problem with directing satires is the clich –ness that seeps into the picture after awhile. For e.g. if it is a story about corruption, we know it will end with ‘sachhai ki jeet’ at the end, only maybe the how, varies. So from the first look, Ekees Topon ki Salaami screamed of a predictable storyline and ‘a happily ever after ending’. Well, thankfully, it wasn’t entirely predictable if not entirely cliché.
Purushotam Narayan Joshi (Anupam Kher) is an honest-to-the-core government servant; he goes around housing colonies disinfecting them of mosquitoes. His two sons Subhash (Divyendu Sharma) and Shekhar (Manu Rishi) are the good-for-nothing loafers, whose name-sake job is as a party worker in a ‘dipped in corruption’ Chief Minister’s party. And they hate their father because ‘Jeete jee abhi tak aapne hamare liye kuch bhi nahi kiya.’ They, especially Shekhar, are depressingly horrible to his father; so much that I was cringing in my seat. Taanya (Aditi Sharma) is Shekhar’s love interest and the Chief Minister’s speech writer. The day before Joshi ji’s retirement he is a hurry to go back home and hands over his machine to the designated officer (who is busy watching porn) but does not wait to get the deposit receipt. Next day when he reaches the office with great expectations of a retirement party and ‘imaandari ka samman’, he is instead accused of being a thief. Distraught he comes back home, where his heath deteriorates and the news of his suspension leads to a screaming session by the sons. Pushed to the brink, Joshi has a massive cardiac arrest, but not before making Shekhar promise him of restoring his father’s lost respect with an ‘Ekees topon ki Salaami’ (21 gun salute).
The first thing that bugged me about this movie was its annoying background score. It was one of those which is supposedly hinting to the audience that ‘Hey, this is a funny scene, you gotta laugh.’ Well sorry but neither were the dialogues funny nor was the acting prompting me to laugh, but still the score continued. And despite RamSampath’s composition, the songs were a listen to and forget. Especially, the song ‘ghoor ghoor ken a dekho’ picturised on Neha Dhupia was a disaster which scenes picked up right out of every single hit song since the 90’s. it was so annoying that I wanted to scream to Neha, ‘So I don’t know about the others, but I can assure you one less ‘ghoorna’ from my end’. Anupam Kher is a brilliant actor so I see no point in even commenting on his acting. The two sons made me hate them (and also strangle them), but that’s what their characters were intended to do, so that was good acting I suppose. If you are wondering why Neha Dhupia is in the movie, I don’t know, you will have to ask her only. I found Aditi Sharma’s character a little sketchy, but she managed to look cute.
Overall, a good storyline, but not a great movie because of the the chinks that stared back at me. So unless you are desperate to sit inside a movie theatre this weekend, maybe this movie can be happily passed.
My Verdict: **