Dasvi gets pass marks when distinction should have been aim

Abhishek Bachchan in Dasvi Photo: Universal Communications

Ganga Ram Choudhary (Abhishek A. Bachchan), the chief minister of Harit Pradesh, is sentenced to jail for a scam in the field of education. Just like what we hear happens in real life, a sycophantic cop, Satnam (Manu Rishi Chadha) gives all luxuries to him. But the arrival of a new and highly-decorated jail superintendent, Jyoti Deswal (Yami Gautam Dhar) leads to this being curtailed and him being treated on par with other prisoners.

Meanwhile, though operating from his cell, Ganga Ram gives his wife Bimmo a.k.a. Bimladevi (Nimrat Kaur), the ‘official’ chief minister’s post of the state until his incarceration ends. He tries his best to get bail, but it is denied. And Bimladevi, totally raw, begins to get a taste of power.

Ganga Ram, meanwhile, is told to work in the chair-making department for prisoners, but sees that people who are studying for various examinations do not have to do menial jobs as they are given time to study. He therefore decides to study for Std. X (he has passed only the 8th standard) to avoid work, but is caught out when he dozes off in the library. Jyoti takes him to task and soon Ganga Ram decides that he will study seriously and actually pass this school graduation level.

Meanwhile, Bimmo gets corrupted and power-hungry and decides that her husband must flunk the exam, because Ganga Ram has vowed that he will never return as CM unless he passes it. What happens next?

While the idea is good and makes a case for politicians being educated to become better, more evolved people, the film’s execution is often confused, as if the (seasoned) writers and (debutant) director do not know whether to treat the story at a satire/comedy level or make a serious movie out of it. The imbalance makes for the movie being just a feel-good watch, but without anything memorable staying on with the viewer.

There are open references to older movies like Taare Zameen Par and sequences seemingly (well, let me correct that—openly!) inspired from movies like Rang De Basanti or Lage Raho Munna Bhai, but if anything works in the film, it is the relationship between Ganga Ram and Jyoti and Bimmo and him. The easygoing camaraderie between him and Satpal as well as Ghanti (Arun Khuswaha) is also charming and so, despite its shortcomings, the film ends up as a cute but tepid comedy.

Abhishek A. Bachchan impresses in his layered character, though there are areas where his behavior looks a tad far-fetched, like his insistence on being a tiger who does not change his stripes. Nimrat Kaur is interesting indeed in her changed avatar, but her limited expressions sometimes fall short. Yami Gautam, taking another different role as in A Thursday, scores high as Jyoti. Chittaranjan Tripathy as Tandon is excellent, and Manu Rishi Chadha very good as Satpal, and the other supporting actors, including Sarthak Gambhir, playing Abhishek’s brother, do well.

This is a film that can be called a decent one-time watch at home (it has been released on OTT) though as a movie, it just gets pass marks when with a little attention given, it could have passed with distinction. Producer Dinesh Vijan must have the vision (Sorry, couldn’t resist that!) as he is too easily satisfied with average results (Luka Chhupi, Mimi, Hindi Medium and so on) when the standards of humor could go as high as his Go Goa Gone or Stree.

Rating: *** (Just About)

Netflix & Jio Plus presents Jio Studios’, Maddock Films’ & Bake My Cake Films’Dasvi  Produced by: Dinesh Vijan, Shobhna Yadav & Sandeep Leyzell  Directed by: Tushar Jalota Written by:Ram Bajpai, Suresh Nair, Ritesh Shah & Sandeep Leyzell  Music: Sachin-Jigar Starring: Abhishek Bachchan, Yami Gautam Dhar, Nimrat Kaur, Manu Rishi Chadha, Sarthak Gambhir, Chittaranjan Tripathy, Arun Kushwah, Sumit Shekhar Rai, Danish Husain, Vayam Upadhyay & others








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