When veteran actor Anupam Kher plays the lead of a film, there is a lot that one would expect. After all, Bollywood has never been kind to talented actors and has always been obsessed with the so called stars. So when once in a blue moon, a film like Mr Bhatti On Chutti gets set to release, film lovers like me start to expect a lot from a small film. Also, the film has been lying in the cans for more than 3 years now which also makes one feel bad for the makers. A star’s film will never be stuck that long.
Mr Bhatti On Chutti is about Mr. Bhatti (Anupam Kher) who works at a bank with an irritating boss and has two desires in his life – meet Amitabh Bachchan (Bhatti is obsessed with him and his films) and meet the then president of the United States George Bush. Being a comedy, the film must have had enough elements – from characters to the plot and subplots – to make an impact on the audience. Sadly, there isn’t anything that one would take a liking to.
Mr. Bhatti wins a trip to Europe and goes over after taking a Chutti. Life takes a lot of twists and turns, from the foreigner he bumps into, the Pakistani (Shakti Kapoor) with whom he tries to share a few thoughts (and make people laugh apparently) to shady people. Eventually he gets his identity interchanged with a lookalike man. After enough efforts to incite laughter by getting Mr. Bhatti to do weirdly nerdy stuff and speak things that only someone out of his mind would speak – and here Mr. Bhatti wants to talk about world peace with Bush – sigh, Mr. Bhatti on Chutti fails to engage.
Mr Bhatti On Chutti is a comedy but it is neither humorous nor slapstick. Karan Razdan, known for his films Girlfriend and Hawas, had never tried a comedy before and possibly he should never try one again. One accustomed with his earlier films would know that his stories are not multilayered and characters are pretty one dimensional or two at the most. Not surprisingly, Mr. Bhatti On Chutti does not have any sub plots and all the supporting actors hardly get any screen time. It almost appears that Anupam Kher is on the screen all throughout the film’s runtime.
Anupam Kher is an actor of a different league but regretfully, he just does not have the right premise nor is he in the right hands. Why he would choose to do such a film is something of a mystery. Mr. Bhatti On Chutti proves that if the story is shabby and the director’s vision blurred then even an actor of Mr. Kher’s caliber cannot salvage the venture. With a Hitler meets Chaplin look for Kher and merely caricaturist dialogues, Mr Bhatti On Chutti is not heading anywhere to impress.
This is one of those films that you would wish to walk out from or regret having walked in for.