JOLLY LLB is a movie that has been made with heartfelt emotions. And it’s a heart that is backed by a ticking mind & a responsive conscience which relies on both humor and pathos for impact. A heart which is buoyed by a clutch of outstanding performances and a directorial style that is marked by admirable lightness of touch. Bravo Subhash Kapoor for showing how rich n mighty conspire to snatch away justice from a common man with the help of their unfair manipulations using loopholes of our judicial systems.
SCRIPT & SCREENPLAY : The credit for script, screenplay, dialogues goes to the man who is also the director of this movie i.e. SUBHASH KAPOOR, who deserves applause as apart from entertaining the audience, he has also been able to touch our sentimental chords. This film is not an emotional juggernaut nor a subtle snoozer but it is a movie that finds its own pitch and keeps it consistent till it reveals a little bit of magic. This isn’t borne out of a genre but out of the material itself, it’s organic. Albeit, Subhash Kapoor’s dialogues turn out to be the mainstay of this benevolent project. He finds humor in the most unlikeliest of places. The story begins when Jolly (Arshad), a lawyer in Meerut moves to Delhi where his Jija (Manoj) resides for better prospects leaving his lady love Sandhya (Amrita) behind. He senses an opportunity when a wealthy accused is acquitted in a hit & run case and decides to file a PIL to re-open the case which brings him face to face with Rajpal (Boman) who is shrewd, high profile kind of a lawyer and is considered to be unbeatable. What follows is a courtroom drama full of twists n turns entwined to each other and showcases all kinds of emotions ranging from buffoonery, wit, anger, jealousy, corruption, lobbying and righteousness. The plot is also littered with allusions to the realities of a law enforcement structure that is steeped in corruption. One such scene is where creepy cop called played by SANJAY MISHRA auctions a plum posting in Delhi Police station to several tainted cops seated before him. Another example of fine screenplay is how Boman tells his own accomplice to go to his opposing lawyer Arshad & pose as a witness of crime scene who is ready to testify in court. To prevent the same witness from appearing in court Boman extracts a huge amount from his client. The reason why Boman does this is that earlier while paying his fees the same client had paid him a little less n when Boman had objected, the client taunted Boman of being greedy. So our smart egoist lawyer plants a fake witness & takes his revenge by forcing the same client to pay crores but without greedy tag attached to it.
STARCAST : Almost all the actors have played their characters to perfection giving it a realistic touch. ARSHAD WARSI exhibits many shades of humor, nervousness, confidence, frustration and has executed all his scenes in a brilliant way. BOMAN IRANI brings alive on screen most flawlessly the psyche of a towering legal giant who is mean, conniving and steely cold. He leaves you gasping for breath with his audacity to prove someone innocent, who in actual is as guilty as hell. He impresses as a lawyer who knows how to play within loopholes of the law to come out trumps even in worst of the cases. AMRITA RAO although has a minuscule role but she has managed to look pleasant whenever she arrives on the screen justifying the look of a small town girl believing in principles of life. But the highlight of the movie is performance of SAURABH SHUKLA who dazzles the screen with his antics. A pragmatist and eccentric who threatens to hurl paperweights at litigants and is not above asking for personal favours, Saurabh embodies the limitations of the Indian judicial process as well as its strengths. MOHAN KAPOOR looks all the way a polished but hassled tycoon whose son is accused in a hit n run case and is raring to do anything to save his son from clutches of law. In fact his persona is perfectly synonymous with such characters. Other ensemble actors who are able to impress are MANOJ PAHWA, BRIJENDRA KALA, SANJAY MISHRA, HARSH CHHAYA and after a long time RAMESH DEO.
TECHNICAL ASPECTS : One more brilliant aspect of Subhash Kapoor is that he has woven the screenplay in such a way that nowhere does he seek to call the audience's attention to either the technical aspects of the film or the cinematic elements that constitute a mainstream entertainer. The music for this movie has been given by KRSNA which has failed to impress the audience. Backgound music is by SANJOY CHAUDHARY which again is of very average standard. ANSHUMAN MAHALEY is the Cinematographer of this movie who has done a descent job as per the resources available to him. SANDEEP SINGH BAJELI , who is the editor of this movie has done a good job and managed to provide an even pace to the run-time of 131 minutes of this flick. PARVEZ KHAN as the action director has given Arshad Warsi a chance to flex his muscles albeit in one scene only. But the movie belongs to SUBHASH KAPOOR, the man who remained active behind the scenes by writing the story, screenplay, dialogues n finally directing this movie.He has made a movie which relies on both pathos n humor for impact, is buoyed by a clutch of directorial style that is marked by admirable lightness of touch. He has composed some real witty & remarkable dialogues for this movie which are really striking. Like when Saurabh says “Kanoon andha hota hai. Judge nahin. Judge ko sab dikhta hai". Than there are lines like one lawyer calling other as “Do Kaudi ka Vakeel” and refer to someone as a “honest bloody Indian”. Also, "Suna Tha , Kanoon ke haath lambe hote hain, Ghanta lambe hote hain". Kudos to the team for showing plight of common man when he gets entangled in the web of our judicial system & how worst things have become in our courts in favor of only rich and mighty.
WOW MOMENTS : Watch out for the courtroom scenes wherein Saurabh is sitting as a judge and cribbing about cold tea being served, working in non-ac court-room and is not able to find his striking hammer when pandemonium ensues in court. Also a scene where he farts while eating his lunch in most amusing way sitting in his chamber along with Arshad n Boman.
OVER THE HEAD : The biggest let down in the movie is its songs which in actual were not required at all. All the songs in the movie seem like a forced entry and heckle the pace of the narration.
CONCLUSION : What i personally liked about this movie is that it not only addresses a serious theme - the anomalies inherent in Indian judicial system - in a jocular manner but also steers well clear of unwarranted flippancy. In fact Subhash Kapoor's style of film making bears a stark resemblance to that of Raj Kumar Hirani's Munnabhai series. So anyone who has an appetite for meaningful cinema in the form of hard hitting satire will find this movie as a wholesome meal for him. But please don't go with a mindset of this movie being an out & out mad comedy as it a has lots more to offer and shows how some termites have infected our judiciary.
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