Ludo film review: Hijinks in the time of Corona
Ludo movie cast: Pankaj Tripathi, Aditya Roy Kapoor, Sanya Malhotra, Rajkummar Rao, Fatima Sana Shaikh, Abhishek Bachchan, Rohit Saraf, Pearl Maaney, Shalini Vatsa
Ludo movie director: Anurag Basu
Ludo movie rating: Two and a half stars
There are very few Bollywood filmmakers who can do madcap like Anurag Basu does. Life is ludo, and ludo is life, declares a character in Basu’s latest, and the game begins. The declaration comes with an invitation to observe a bunch of characters criss-crossing, sometimes closely, sometimes tangentially, and to see where they fetch up, to the beat of that lovely old Bhagwan dada song–o beta ji, o babuji, kismat ki hawa kabhi garam, kabhi naram.
Meet the gang. First up, local mob boss Sattu Bhaiyya (Tripathi), and his former associate Bittoo (Bachchan). Stand-up comic Akash (Roy Kapoor), and have-groom-will-marry about-to-be-bride Shruti (Malhotra). Part-time restauranter, full-time Mithun fan Alok urf Aloo (Rao), and the love of his life, Pinky (Shaikh). Small-town fella Rahul (Saraf), and sweet-nurse-on-the-run Sreeja (Maaney). And assorted others.
This is the kind of film where you are meant to expect the unexpected, bizarre twists segueing into crazy turns. And there are several spots which do the needful: of special note is the go-bananas sequence in which a ‘epicentre of local crime’ blows up and the consequences of the blast ripple out; a fairly sharp comic set with takedowns of ‘godi’ media, and the conjugating of cows and votes; and an absolute corker which involves a crane and a hospital bed. I won’t give anything more away but someone in the writer’s team, re the last bit, has clearly read their Modesty Blaise.