After far too long, Bollywood has delivered a well-written comedy that doesn’t resort to good old misogyny in a desperate attempt to make you laugh. A remake of Tamil comedy Kolamavu Kokila, Good Luck Jerry is set in Punjab and features an immigrant from Bihar as the lead character. Written by Pankaj Matta and directed by Siddharth Sen, Good Luck Jerry stars Janhvi Kapoor, Deepak Dobriyal, Mita Vashisht, and Sushant Singh in pivotal roles.
Jerry (Janhvi Kapoor), her mother Sharbati (Mita Vasisht), and her sister Cherry (Samta Sudiksha) are Bihari immigrants in Punjab who run a small business making momos…but only vegetarian. Jerry also works in a massage parlour which is a source of shame for her mother and the cause of a constant disagreement between mother and daughter. The family of three women is the centre of attraction for men of all ages (obviously) in the neighbourhood. And it is these men who ultimately get roped into a dangerous situation with the trio.
When Jerry’s mother is diagnosed with cancer, she looks for any way to make money and comes across a drug dealer who needs someone to transport illegal substances. When Jerry gets spooked by a police raid and wants to quit the business, the real trouble begins. When her family is threatened, Jerry gives into the main boss’ demand of transporting 100 kilograms of cocaine. And that is when the family makes a plan to escape both the criminals and the cops.
Good Luck Jerry is well written and keeps you hooked throughout, even through the emotional moments. It uses the prevalent racism against people from Bihar and the Northeast in Punjab and turns it into comedy that shames the racist. And to our immense delight, the Punjabi-speaking actors get the accent and language bang on and don’t resort to the loud Punjabi stereotype. Much relief for all Punjabis!
Janhvi Kapoor has managed to surprise even her long-standing critics with her performance in this film. Good Luck Jerry makes us believe that subtle, dark humour may just be the actor’s domain. She aces the deer in headlights persona that her role requires. Janhvi Kapoor also brings the humour in several moments which was not expected when the film started. Soon after making you laugh, she will also make you cry but doesn’t go over the top with emotion.
Deepak Dobriyal is a delight as always. As Rinku, a neighbourhood boy who is convinced that Jerry loves him, Dobriyal shines in his limited screen time. Mita Vasisht, as Sharbati, made us realise how much we missed watching this legendary actor on screen. She kicks off the story with promise, disappears for a little while, and then comes right back with a bang. Sushant Singh is equal parts scary and funny as Malik, the exasperated boss who can deal with the biggest criminals and cops but is outsmarted by a young girl with no experience in the drug trade.
The climax is chaotic and sort of predictable, but what you might enjoy more than the visuals is the accompanying song that is bound to be a part of several party playlists. For an absolute laughter riot and an overall good film, watch Good Luck Jerry on Disney+ Hotstar this weekend.
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