Bluffmaster – All skin, no meat.
When Abhishek Bachchan hit the TV screens, crooning or rather saying a song, we knew that we were heading for a surprise. And it surely did surprise us. The next thing we knew was that this song topped the charts instantly and had become the flavor of the month sorts.
The stylish look and the sensational appeal did serve as a prelude to a pizzazz of a film which boasted of a cast as versatile as Abhishek Bachchan, Priyanka Chopra, Ritesh Deshmukh, Boman Irani and Nana Patekar, with the rest of the gang. But seemed that Rohan Sippy, the director, knew that he had a loose script in hand with a climax so premature and tad that it wouldn’t last even seconds and perhaps that’s the reason of an overtly stylish film called Bluffmaster.
Let’s see where the film falters and where it scores.
First, the cast. Nothing and nothing could have been a better cast then the movie has. Abhishek Bachchan, playing the conman Roy – stylish and suave, though he has tried to carry this image way too hard on his shoulders and he would have marred it by overdoing it but thanks to his dress designer, his “herculean efforts” didn’t get much notice. Priyanka Chopra, played his love interest, as Simmi. As usual, Bollywood doesn’t have much to offer to its leading lady and this is being proved time and again. Bluffmaster is no exception. A heroine is just an eye candy to the viewers in Hindi movies who can gyrate seductively or cry buckets of water for hero. Simmi too doesn’t have much to do here in film, though she is the only thing in Roy’s life, he can kill for. She is there to justify Roy’s antics. We see tad too little of Priyanka’s acting prowess, if she has any.
Boman Irani is duly used, as Dr. Bhale Ram who has a quite an inspiring sequence in the mid of the movie. Good inspirational lines written and delivered but since the whole film is packaged so racy, the sequence and the inspirational aspect of it fail to register in viewer’s mind.
Nana Patekar is flawless with his role. I wish his role was written equally flawless.
Ritesh Deshmukh comes as the most surprising element, totally unpredictable. When you enter the theatre, you expect Abhishek to shine, Priyanka to dazzle and Nana to act but Ritesh steals the show in the last. Though he too minces his words and fails to deliver on some occasions but there is certainly an iota of improvement in him.
Now the plot – Roy is a conman and for him impossible is nothing. He is a master of his trade and seems he is doing good at it for the lavish lifestyle, designer clothes, fast cars and expensive apartment he keeps, he mustn’t be a mere thug. He specializes in his profession and like a learned scholar he has theories to support and formulae to adopt before he plans a dupe act.
He can and we see that he can dupe anyone of one’s belongings, usually moolah.
But luck doesn’t always favor the brave too. This time, accidentally, he dupes Simmi’s film producer uncle, played by Tinu Anand and spills the beans.
And there goes the love story the usual way. Roy pleading Simmi to come back in his life for he vows never to take to duping again. But Simmi, a truthful girl, decides to move out of his life.
Dejected yet he follows Simmi everywhere and one day encounters Dittu (Ritesh Deshmukh), a small time crook who is a wannabe big time conman. While Dittu succeeds in duping Dr Bhaleram aka Boman, Roy saves the Doc and helps him get his things back from Dittu.
Dr. Bhaleram owes this to Roy and promises to help him, of course by treating him of any ailment for free. What else can you expect a Doc to do.
Dittu is furious on Roy and full of respect for him as well for he finds him the ultimate conman and pesters him to teach him the art of cheating people. Roy agrees, though reluctantly, because Dittu helps him in a situation where he faints and takes him to his digs.
Later Roy is diagnosed with a brain tumor, the apparent reason why he faints often and here he is helped by Dr. Bhaleram, who diagnosed the disease and upon this fills him with a renewed vigor to live life, whatever life he is remained with – 3 months to be precise.
So here goes our Roy, playing a teacher to a contrasting disciple who doesn’t spare a chance to mess up. With great difficulties, Roy manages to teach a few tricks to Dittu, and in between tries to get back Simmi and fails miserably at both.
Meanwhile Dittu reveals that he wants to take revenge from Chandru, Nana Patekar, as he cheated his father of a massive sum of money and consequently his father lost his mental balance and Dittu took to duping people. Dittu wants Roy to dupe Chandru and take his revenge.
Roy doesn’t agree on this until one day Chandru crosses swords with him when he tries to be little frisky with Simmi.
And then starts a rollercoaster ride which takes a long preparation and a bunch of crooks with Roy, who helps him dupe Chandru.
And like a typical masla movie, Roy gets to dupe Chandru of 5 Crore. A show down sequence between Chandru and Roy too takes place with Simmi as a hostage.
The climax, at last sees Roy being thrown off a multistory by Chandru. But Roy doesn’t get turned into a slush. Instead he falls on a life saving air mattress. And from here starts the process of Roy finding the cast – Dittu, Chandru, Dr. Bhaleram, Simmi, the gang and in this process he visits all those places where he met them only to find that they all were the locations for film shoots.
And then, one fine day, Roy finds out that he is being fooled as Dittu, actually the son of Simmi’s uncle (Tinu Anand) whom Roy cheated, who incidentally is a film director, plotted this master plan of teaching Roy a lesson, with the help of his film unit.
A good film, not hilarious, but still a one time watch, not with great lines but still succeeds in raising few laughs, not with excellent cinematic experiments but still stylish, not a director’s movie but a film stylist’s – Bluffmaster is quite predictable. Not the climax, though. And the climax – it’s way too unrealistic. Real life is not as précised as a story. Things are not as synchronized as the series of events unleashed in Bluffmaster.
Things go wrong and they do go wrong in real life. But in Bluffmaster, nothing goes wrong. And that’s what makes Bluffmaster a tad illogical.
Bluffmaster – A one time see.