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Kaizad-Gustad
Writer Director


























Movie Review
JACKPOT:BAD BLUFF


The cards are as dicey as any gamble at a casino. A filmmaker, who has made Katrina Kaif strip in her debut film, got the most successful actor, Amitabh Bachchan to star in it; yet brought doom instead of boom both for himself and producer, Ayesha Shroff. A former porn film actress who fared her indecent best in Mahesh Bhatt’s Jism 2. An actor par excellence, who has always been a delight to watch, be it in the classic, ‘Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron’ or dancing to ‘Oye Oye’ in Tridev. The trio: Kaizad Gustad, Sunny Leone and Naseeruddin Shah are a curious mix of cards; Shah, of course, being a trump card. As any gamble would play out, Shah, instead of lifting the other two, falls harder than the worst loser. The odds are definitely not in favour of Gustad’s Jackpot. After all, this is not about lady luck. This is about a story. 

But then Gustad thinks it is about solving some kind of a puzzle. So we have 10 minute scenes or chapters (titles like ‘tedhi ungli’, ‘maza aaya’, ‘fullto bluff’) that go back and forth so many times that one is happy to give up and concentrate instead on Leone’s ample cleavage or Naseer’s long, white, knotted wig and his bright floral shirts. Incidentally, another character is constantly distracted by her ample assets. She repeatedly tells him to look up instead into her eyes and focus. Gustad is apparently speaking to the male audience. Going back to the puzzle..er…story, the film is set in Goa. One star to the cinematographer (Artur Zurawski) here for making it look stunningly beautiful. Except when he indulges in weird angles showing us Leone’s legs a la Ram Gopal Verma. 

Boss (Naseer) runs a casino from his boathouse called, Jackpot. He hosts a poker night, announcing 5 crores for the winner. The money goes missing. His ‘con artists’, Francis (Sachin Joshi) and Maya (Sunny Leone) are prime suspects. Boss in turn, plays his own con game with them. Makarand Deshpande, the local cop, investigates. The twists keep getting mixed up with every attempt at clever screenplay. 

It is a marvel how Kaizad Gustad ropes in actors like Amitabh Bachchan and Naseeruddin Shah. Clearly, he is some sort of a bluffmaster. More so when his films have the story value of a Joker in a game of cards. Not that it would have been that hard to bring in Sunny Leone. It probably was harder to explain to her the meaning of her dialogue, “Sarkar aur underworld mein kya farak hai”. She says it in her flat firang, sweet voice like she is discussing onions and potatoes. Or perhaps, lacy lingeries. Watching her walk casually in purple lacy underwear or simply stripping and whispering, “where is the money”, may not be all that gratifying either for those who secretly watch her earlier films. Sachin Joshi, her partner in crime, doesn’t impress either, with his muscles and tattoos. 

Naseeruddin Shah tries hard to pull along, clinging aimlessly to his flamboyance. Sadly, he is anything but the trump card in this bluff of a Jackpot. 
 



   Gayatri Gauri

Gayatri Gauri a former journalist and film writer, has trained in scriptwriting with a writer from Los Angeles, and occasionally conduct writing workshops. Her first directed short film made her a finalist on "Gateway to Hollywood", a reality show on direction on Sony Pix. Her work details and contact is on her blog . http://gayatrigauri.blogspot.in

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