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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 15 November 2018

Film review: All Is Well has hardly anything good going for it

To begin with, the chemistry between the leads is non-­existent, with Bachchan and Asin delivering wooden and forgetful performances. The comedy sequences, most of which involve Kapoor, are tepid and don’t do justice to his talents.
Abhishek Bachchan gives a forgetful performance. Courtesy T-Series
Abhishek Bachchan gives a forgetful performance. Courtesy T-Series

All Is Well

Director: Umesh Shukla

Starring: Abhishek Bachchan, Rishi Kapoor, Asin, Supriya Pathak

One star

All Is Well tells the story of a dysfunctional family forced to go on a road trip in stolen cars, while being chased by a gang to whom the family owes a lot of money.

Along the way, as is customary in Bollywood flicks, frozen hearts melt, teary reconciliations take place and lots of life lessons are learnt.

The father, Bhajanlal Bhalla (Rishi Kapoor), runs a debt-­ridden bakery shop and his son, Inder (Abhishek Bachchan), is an aspiring musician living in Thailand. They do not get along.

But with mother Pammi (Supriya Pathak) beginning to suffer from the onset of Alzheimer’s, father and son are forced to put aside their diff­erences and work together to face her medical problems and overcome the family’s financial troubles.

Also in the mix we have Nimmi (Asin), Inder’s love interest, who tries her best to support the Bhalla family.

The basic plot of All Is Well seems like a mishmash of elements from other flicks, but it’s the overall treatment – with slow pacing and a throwback to the 1990s style of set-building and styling – that quickly reveals that all is far from well with this film.

To begin with, the chemistry between the leads is non-­existent, with Bachchan and Asin delivering wooden and forgetful performances. The comedy sequences, most of which involve Kapoor, are tepid and don’t do justice to his talents.

In the supporting cast, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub, playing a loan shark, delivers a decent performance.

The music, composed by Himesh Reshammiya, is average, although the song Nachan Farrate, sung by Kanika Kapoor and Meet Bros Anjjan, has proved popular and is slowly climbing the Indi-­music charts.

All Is Well is director Umesh Shukla’s second feature after 2012’s highly acclaimed OMG: Oh My God! And that is exactly what viewers of his second film might be saying after being subjected to a clichéd story and a dreadful screenplay in a film that has been badly directed and has patchy editing.

The film gets things wrong on so many levels it is difficult to find anything that is well with it.

The intermission banner read: All Is Not Well – this, it seems, may have been Shukla’s way of warning the audience about the mindless boredom that lay ahead. If only it could have come at the beginning.

artslife@thenational.ae