wogma rating: Watch when on TV/online (?)
Joker is very intentionally silly and gets cute at times. It keeps things simple despite the seemingly complicated situation it gets itself into and it is clean. If you don't mind some childish fun, wait for the DVD release. And if you do, you are better off skipping it.Read more
I must say that Joker does invoke curiosity in the promos after you get past the typical loudness of a masala film. Just when you are about to dismiss the trailer as yet another mindless action-comedy starring Akshay Kumar, the concept makes you smile and hope that maybe this once we have something really different from what we've seen in Hindi films so far. The protagonist inviting attention towards his tiny, irrelevant village by creating aliens. He needs to do this because this village is ignored by the rest of the world.
There is lots of scope for comedy and action in this and I am looking forward to it. However, the hope doesn't go too far because there's always a high chance that Akshay Kumar and Shirish Kunder will make it into a regular slapstick.
Not to mention, watching Sonakshi Sinha doesn't make me too eager. Not that, I look forward to seeing Akshay Kumar and his histrionics. I guess all hope is then banked upon the story and the potential for entertainment it hold. Unfortunately, the music doesn't seem to have gone down well with most.
Milliblog - "Poor Hindi debut by GV Prakash Kumar."
Music Aloud – "5/10"
dunkdaft - "First Bollywood outing of G V Prakash is interesting. A soundtrack that is perfect and in-line with the theme, Joker - only leaves us wanting for more. More by the composer."
Bollyspice – "2.5/5"
Apun Ka Choice – "2.5/5"
- meeta, a part of the audience
Joker is not your typical Akshay Kumar action-comedy. It starts of being and looking silly, stays so and ends up even sillier. But this is not the regular slapsticky comedy either. It is cute silly. The characters of the obscure village Paglapur have their quirks as you would expect, but they react consistently with their character without getting too repetitive. And the repetition is mostly enjoyable.
A lot of the repetition being tolerable has to do with the perfect length of the film. At a good 15 minutes less than two hours, Joker is just right to make the goofing about acceptable. The complete absence of toilet humor and innuendos feels so fresh in a product like this. But that is what Joker's humor is not. The humor that it does have too, is pretty situational and induces hearty laughs.
Unfortunately, the humor fizzles out as Joker turns its focus towards the story. While trying to literally bring Paglapur on the map, the story that Agastya (Akshay Kumar) and company cook up goes out of control. Which would have been fine for the genre that writer, Shirish Kunder wants to keep the film in. But the fun fizzles out and the characters start focusing on the logistics of when and how.
While, logistics and logic are welcome in any story, in the fantasy world of Paglapur – where the nights are lit with lanterns made out of fireflies – they distract you from the fun. Not that there is any consistency in logic through the film – for example, a village so remote that it has no power supply, but has electricity to light up the village like it's Christmas not to mention has mobile and internet connection. And oh, this dot of a village is not devoid of item numbers - Maharashtrian ones at that, bang in the middle of the Hindi belt.
It is such things that were so easy to take care of and would have added an additional layer of humor. And this inconsistency with sudden focus on the dry story that pulls Joker down. Else, I'd have shocked myself by actually liking this one. As is, I am a little surprised to think of the film as 'not bad'. Especially if you think of it as a film for children that adults can go to, too.
The storyline involving aliens and such is not only in the kid zone, the commentary on Indian politics might also be quick education for kids on what's lined up for them in years to come. Except for the item number, of course. The story in fact, does come across as a bunch of kids sitting around playing, "make a story" where every child in turn contributes one line to a story that is built right there as the game progresses. Joker is fun in that kind of a way. Also, Joker does have a lot of other social commentary and analogies thrown in for us to notice.
Moreover, this is the rare chance for us to watch Akshay Kumar not play himself but stick to his character. While it is much too serious a comparison, his character reminded me Mohan from Swades. There are no histrionics, no slow-mo entries, no glamour, no super-hero attitude. He plays plain and simple Agastya who's conscious suddenly wakes up to do well for his village. The rest of the cast has Shreyas Talpade playing one of the most hilarious characters. And this too is well-served by use in appropriate measure and not overdoing it. The other men bring in their laughs too – from Vrijesh Hirjee to Asrani. The women on the other hand have precious little to do and the film could have pretty much done without their characters.
They together form this fantasy land, Paglapur, which might as well have been Lilliput from Gulliver's Travels. Unfortunately, it doesn't end with the same dose and style of humor as it starts with. And the story is childish while trying to maintain an adult interest in it. A little bit of neither here nor there and yet a welcome change from what we have come to expect from a Akshay Kumar film.
- meeta, a part of the audience
Thumbs up, by Rachit Gupta, Filmfare : ... Like the Indian cricket team this film is so strong on paper that its genuine talent shines through its lacklustre and downright shoddy execution. ... full review
So-So, by Baradwaj Rangan, Blogical Conclusion, The New Sunday Express : ...Nonsense comedies, however, are rarer – these are films where the audience has to be reasonably alert, tuning their antennae to a certain frequency, a certain vibe, and at least for a while, it seemed to me that Shirish Kunder was on to a solid nonsense comedy with Joker... full review
Thumbs down, by Taran Adarsh, Bollywood Hungama : ...On the brighter side, the setting and structures look magical and to build an entire story around a desolate village must have been enchanting. ... full review
Thumbs down, by Deepa Gahlot, cinemaah : ... it’s too silly to be effective satire, it’s too insincere to be a help-the-poor plea (like Swades), its tackiness ruins the small sci-fi bit, it’s not cute enough to appeal to kids... full review
Thumbs down, by Suparna Sharma, Deccan Chronicle : ...Whatever Hollywood may have us believe, according to Bollywood, aliens are not just dullards, but will pick the dumbest amongst us for friends, and as dance partners.... full review
Thumbs down, by Trisha Gupta, FirstPost : ...Shirish Kunder’s Joker isn’t short on starting premises. But a film that hopes to fly all these kites simultaneously can only be setting itself up for a spectacular fall. And boy, does it crash and burn.... full review
Thumbs down, Free Press Journal : ...The performances are over- the- top , the narration lacks the spoofyness that could have made the film enjoyable and the VFX is just woefully substandard.... full review
Thumbs down, by Fatema H Kagalwala, India Entertainment : ...We just had Salman un-Salman himself in Ek Tha Tiger and now we have Akshay un-Akshay himself in Shirish Kunder’s Joker. And that remains the only good thing to be said about this curiously ridiculous film.... full review
Thumbs down, by Shubhra Gupta, indian express : ...Can kids watch this, I asked myself as I watched this all-over-the-place faradiddle. And then I dismissed it. Because even children, especially children, need a story that holds, and characters that engage. ... full review
Thumbs down, by Aakash Barvalia, MoviezADDA : ...Written and Directed by Shirish Kunder, the basic plot was indeed interesting but unfortunately the final result was completely destroyed because of some very poor writing. ... full review
Thumbs down, by Shilpa Jamkhandikar, Reuters : ...It would be a shame to even talk about technical aspects in the film except to say that I am thankful this movie wasn’t released in 3D as was originally announced. ... full review
Thumbs down, by Swati Rohatgi, STARDUST : ...Akshay Kumar once again gets into his slapstick genre and presents the same old loud and crass comedy while his new partner in crime Sonakshi Sinha too surprises with the mediocrity of her acting.... full review
Thumbs down, by The ThirdMan, Upper Stall : ...A totally silly plot involving a con regarding aliens gets more and more stupid and juvenile as the film runs on, while totally lacking in the fun and games department. ... full review
Thumbs down, Zee News : ...the best thing about ‘Joker’ – undoubtedly the gorgeous Chitrangada Singh, who rocks in ‘Kaafirana’. Wish there was more her in the film. Watch it for her, if you must. ... full review
faizal0603: Joker nice sweet movie....worth watch it....
nkumar_: Joker is an entertainer though I would say that none of the character stays in your mind once you are out of movie theater. Period
ZeniaIrani: #Joker is the worst movie Ive seen in my life....ever!
seanwilliams259: 'Tees Maar Khan' used to be Akshay Kumar's worst movie ever.. until I saw 'Joker'... yuckhhh!!!
DasLuck4: joker such a Idiotic movie.. total waste of money
Aayushz: sorry @ShirishKunder sir , #joker was a waste of time
25_Shalu: Its better to watch a Ben 10 show rather than joker..!!☇
Not Interested in Watching, by Jake
Not Interested in Watching, by Minda
Not Interested in Watching, by professional resume writing services : <a href="http://adhost.dk/kompetencer/adwords">Adwords</a>
Want to Watch, by VeroMeet : It might be one of those movies, where its SO BAD, its SO GOOD lol
Yay! Thumbs Up, by Raj : Dear Shirish I want a few more from you. Worst than Clerk and worster than Joker. Please..!
Yay! Thumbs Up, by stemple Warszawa
So-So, by TimELiebe : Short and funny with great dance numbers - but the story is a hodgepodge even by *masala* standards.
Nay! Thumbs Down, by Amit Kumar : A complete waste of money and time. Not worth watching on television either!
Nay! Thumbs Down, by Fatema : Cutesy-ridiculous, with a bit of imagination and lots of typical naivete.
Nay! Thumbs Down, by James : This is dumb movie by dumb director.
Nay! Thumbs Down, by Sergio Ramos : 91
Nay! Thumbs Down, by Suman
This page has additional observations, other than the ones noted in the main review.
Warning: this section has some details that could distort your experience while watching the movie. I strongly recommend reading this only after you have seen the movie or if you have decided not to see it.
Agastya's (Akshay Kumar) village, Paglapur is not on the map of India. The people are ignored and are in a dire situation. Agastya takes it upon himself to make sure they are noticed and taken care of.