Diljit Dosanjh, Kriti Sanon, Varun Sharma
Arjun Patiala (Diljit Dosanjh) is the ACP of a fictional town called Firozpur. He mostly has his heart in the right place, wanting the best for his city. But his priorities range in the following order: whiskey, women and then work. He has an erstwhile pal and junior in DCP Onida Singh (Varun Sharma). The two are mostly on the same page but when it comes to women, Onida has given up. He is now in a relationship with his buffalo. As demeaning as it may sound to women, the buffoon doesn’t really make anyone overtly agitated. Mostly, the duo is trying to keep their town a happy place, but there are elements like MLA Prapti Makkad (Seema Pahwa) who is a real-estate goon, Sakool (Mohammed Zeeshan) who is more of a goof than a goon. They make Firozpur crazier than it is, and crime reporter Ritu (Kriti Sanon) reports it all. Obviously things will go awry, obviously the reporter and the ACP will find solace in each other’s arms and so on…
The screenplay is a spoof on events but basic mood is always tediously crazy throughout the 106 minutes of screen time. The writing by Ritesh Shah and Sandeep Leyzell is, at best, mediocre. The jokes which Varun Sharma as Onida Singh gives his heart and soul to, are nothing great and hardly funny. With an unimpressive storyline, Arjun Patiala is like soggy pakora on a rainy Sunday afternoon. A comedy film was just what was needed so it is rather unfortunate that Arjun Patiala didn’t fit the bill. Especially since everyone associated with the film has clearly given their best.
No matter what Diljit Dosanjh does, who he portrays - there is an inherent earnestness to him. He looks genuine even when he is hamming. As Arjun Patiala, Dosanjh tried his level best to make his presence felt in commercial cinema but he fails. There is absolutely no chemistry between Dosanjh and Sanon. With the lead constantly performing on two different planes, it is hardly surprising that the audience isn’t stirred.
Kriti Sanon who is a Maddock film fixture, unfortunately behaves more like a fixture than as the lead heroine. She doesn’t make her presence felt at all. Though she tries her hand at comedy, diligently! Throughout the film you feel like she is ticking off things in a mental checklist…. Contorted face - check, loud dialogues – check, garish dressing – check… Despite the mathematics being in place, Kriti is the most disappointing character in the film. With films like Bareilly Ki Barfi behind her, Arjun Patiala should have been a cakewalk for the lady.
The fact that all the actors associated with the film are not completely bogus, one wonders if the blame for the sham of entertainment lies squarely with Rohit Jugraj. Since his last Hindi film release, James, was a good decade and half ago, it is obvious that Rohit needs more time to get his act around for Bollywood cinema. So, here is an unwarranted piece of advice to the filmmaker - concentrate on the regional cinema front for the time being, Rohit.