Family of Thakurganj: There is no saviour here (Reviews)

Deepa Gahlot
Friday, 19 July 2019

FAMILY OF THAKURGANJ
Director: Manoj K Jha
Starring: Jimmy Shergill, Mahie Gill, Nandish Singh, Saurabh Shukla, Supriya Pilgaonkar, Pavan Malhotra and others
Rating: * *

Family of Thakurganj is one of those films that collects good actors who can speak like UP-wallas, gets them to Lucknow, and hopes a script will materialise out of thin air.

UP is known for its criminals and corrupt cops (actually, which state isn’t!), so a very distant cousin of The Godfather and Gangs of Wasseypur with echoes of Sahib Biwi Aur Gangster was probably cobbled together as the shoot proceeded, because nothing makes sense; there are too many characters with nothing to do, and so little consistency that one scene does not connect with the next.

Nannu (Jimmy Shergill) was forced to become his family’s breadwinner at an early age — he took to crime to provide for his mother (Supriya Pilgaonkar) and younger brother Munnu (Nandish Singh). Nannu’s wife, Sharbati (Mahie Gill) often tells him how to do his job of extortion better; while Munnu, who runs a coaching class, romances an ad agency woman (Pranati Raj Prakash).

The big boss of Thakurganj is Baba Bhandari (Saurabh Shukla), who keeps the peace between warring gangsters Nannu and Badri (Mukesh Tiwari), both into real estate and protection money rackets. But Nannu is supposedly a good gangster who helps people, donates blood and has the media swooning over him. Completing the picture of UP’s lawlessness is evil cop Sajjan Singh (Yashpal Sharma), and drunken dreadlocked killer, Ballu Thapa (Raj Zutshi). There is also an off-screen “mantriji” who keeps the wheels of corruption oiled.

The plot, such as it is, goes haywire very soon; when ideas run out, director Manoj K Jha puts in a song or two, and when all else fails, Munnu pulls himself up to his full height to make a righteous speech, not sure if he wants to be Manoj Kumar or Michael Corleone. Pavan Malhotra, playing an upright SP Rathore, comes in too late to make any difference, and quite understandably looks baffled by the goings on.

The actors go through the motions without even pretending to put in any effort. Sadly, this film does not have any unintended laughs to redeem it — it’s a total write-off.

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