Planet Bollywood
Chor Machaaye Shor
Producer: Sanjay and Rajiv Tolani
Director: David Dhawan
Starring: Bobby Deol, Bipasha Basu, Shilpa Shetty, Om Puri, Paresh Rawal, Shekhar Suman, Rajpal Yadav
Music: Anu Maliik
Lyrics: Tejpal Kaur, Dev Kohli, Minoo Singh, Farhad
Genre: Comedy
Recommended Audience: Parental Guidance
Approximate Running Time: 2 hrs 45 mins
Film Released on: 30 August 2002
Reviewed by: Rakesh Budhu  - Rating: 6.5 / 10
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Public Rating Average: 5.11 / 10 (rated by 410 viewers)
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Even though Chor Machaaye Shor is David Dhawan’s best attempt this year, out of three incessantly mind-numbing films, it is still evident that the director desperately needs a break. This is more evident in Chor Machaaye Shor as the director takes a remake of Hollywood’s Blue Streak into desi land where everyone has a twin and not one of them make sense, even in Dhawan´s non-sensical film world. So Chor Machaaye Shor is definitely watchable and has a few chuckling scenes, but is far from acquiring the rib tackling statuses that some of Dhawan’s more hilarious comedies like Biwi No. 1, Bade Miyan Chote Miyan etc have retained.

Sham (Bobby Deol) has stolen 30 crores worth of diamond and left it at a construction site. He is caught and arrested hoping that when he is eventually freed that the riches will remain there. Eventually he does get out of prison only to find that the building is now a police station. Sham must then try to get his loot (but he has to fall in love before doing so). Thus, Sham becomes Inspector Ram and tries to get the diamonds. However, two people stand in his way Inspector Pande (Om Puri) and ACP Ranbir Singh (Paresh Rawal), the latter wanting him for his daughter Kaajal (Shilpa Shetty) and the former who reads Ram’s character like an open book. Ram must get through both of these men, and it is truly not easy, as wooing Kaajal doesn’t come as easy since he is in love with Inspector Ranjita (Bipasha Basu). Neither of the two girls seem to care anyway.

With a name like David Dhawan at the film’s helm one can truly not expect many logical things about the film. Given that he has this credential behind him, most of the portions are forgivable. Thankfully there isn’t much to stretch out unbelievable to far fetched. Much like other re-makes, Chor Machaaye Shor also has that warning factor in that if you’ve seen Blue Streak, you’ve seen Chor Machaaye Shor. But unlike the Bhatts, Chor Machaaye Shor is not a comedic thriller but a comedic mishap. Dhawan throws in Bollywood’s comedians, Om Puri, Paresh Rawal, Rajpal Yadav, Shekhar Suman, who enacts seven roles, and a number of others. The characters play more than one role and try to implement laughs in the form of repetition. Om Puri and Paresh Rawal are more able to do this with their experience, but the seven Shekhar Suman avatars are annoying. Only when he becomes Sham’s mother does he provide us with laughs, and the situation in itself is alone to laugh at so much of the credit is stolen from him. Rajpal Yadav too borders on redundancy and boringness. Between Om Puri and Paresh Rawal, Rawal is again the winner in the laughs department.

Bobby Deol is good in his role. After the disastrous Shaheed at the box office and the successful Humraaz, Bobby has tackled a completely different genre successfully. Even as his facial expressions may have proved distracting, Bobby does steal the show amongst the lead performers in a great effort. Shilpa Shetty oozes beauty and pizzazz, but like most Dhawan heroines has nothing to do. She shows off her dancing skills in “Chad Ghayyi”, but it seems she has ‘shown off her dancing skills’ in all of her films and nothing else. Pity to Dhawan for belittling the dusky beauty Bipasha Basu to such a little role. There is a reason her films have been so successful, and with Chor Machaaye Shor she takes a small and quite miniscule role and still steals the show. Whether she will weave her ‘non-flopping’ magic despite her small role is yet to be seen.

There are a few things to laugh about in the film, and for once we’re not laughing at them. The script, though unoriginal and as previously mentioned unbelievable at portions has included Dhawan styled comics which are at times successful. The script also makes use of typical dialogues, in which some comedy seems forced and others at ease. The film is also polished rather than using typical and odd looking sets. The cinematography and choreography by Ganesh Acharya are all worth the mention and the look.

The film also carries itself well along for a little more than two and a half hours. The editing has been looked over well enough but not good enough. The songs do pop out of anywhere, pointlessly and some of the scenes play little relevance to the film. Even still, it is nice to see a film which hasn´t suffered from delays. Most Bollywood films are in production for over a year or so and take a great deal of time to release thereafter. Chor Machaaye Shor is a decent product, probably because of this.

The film also abounds in plenty of well shot action scenes. Most of them are entertaining but some are still a further drawback in the pace of the film, making the “Blue Streak” inspiration quite apparent. But more importantly David Dhawan seems to have placed more effort here than he has in Yeh Hai Jalwa and Hum Kisise Kum Nahin. Effort is quite evident, but still not enough to make him the comedy king he once was.

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