WHAT THE FISH
Viacom 18 Motion Pictures, Tipping Point Films and Lightforms Pictures’ What The Fish (UA) is the story of Sudha Mishra (Dimple Kapadia) who lives alone in Delhi. She is obsessed with a fish she has and her money plant. Therefore, she asks her niece, Suman (Sabeena Sheema), to look after both of them when she has to go out of India for a month. Suman introduces her boyfriend, Sumit (Sumit Suri), to her aunt Sudha as she (Suman) has also to go out of Delhi. Sumit promises to feed the fish in time everyday and also water the money plant.
No sooner does the house come in Sumit’s possession than he throws a party there. Friend Neerav (Anand Tiwari) and his girlfriend, Gopa (Dipti T. Pujari), who has eloped with him, attend the party and end up staying in the house as they have no place to stay. Neerav takes the responsibility of feeding the fish and watering the plant but soon he, too, has to go out of Delhi on an official trip. In his absence, Neerav’s lecherous friend, Ravi (Manu Rishi Chadha), tries to get close to Gopa and succeeds. Having had his share of fun with Gopa, he tries to get rid of her when she wants to latch on to him and ditch Neerav.
Ravi asks close friend Meenal (Geetika Tyagi) to somehow take Gopa out of his life, which she succeeds in doing. Meenal’s brother, Raj (Vishal Sharma), seizes the opportunity and asks Meenal to request Ravi to let him stay in the now vacant house as he has come to Delhi to become a boxer. Raj now has to feed the fish and water the plant. Soon, Raj’s friend, Hooda (Mithun Rodwittiya), brings his close friend, Tombi (Sheetal), an accomplished boxer herself, and her family to live in the house as she is trying to get admission in the Delhi boxing team.
Hooda’s wife gets wind of his girlfriend and reaches Sudha Mishra’s house to confront him. There’s a free-for-all between Hooda, his wife and girlfriend as a result of which the expensive furniture, paintings, fish bowl, etc. are badly damaged/broken. Even earlier, the fish had died on a couple of occasions but a new fish, purchased from Pummy’s (Manjot Singh) shop, had been put in the fish bowl in place of the dead fish.
Soon, it is time for Sudha Mishra to return to Delhi and almost everyone who had used her house get down to putting it in order. When Sudha does return to her home, everything is in order but she is shocked when a scary woman breaks free from the wash room and runs out of the house.
Who was that woman? Or was it a spirit? Had someone done black magic? Was that someone Sudha’s estranged husband who lived abroad? Or was it some jealous friend of Sudha?
Shashanka Ghosh’s story is silly, to say the least, after a point of time. The screenplay, penned by Gurmmeet Singh and Tejpal Singh Rawat, is stretched beyond imagination as new people start living in Sudha Mishra’s house one after another. The drama, therefore, gets repetitive, testing the audience’s patience. The aim of the writers is to tickle the audience’s funny bone but rarely do they succeed because the incidents serve to irritate more than entertain. The toilet humour is disgusting. Sudha Mishra’s over-the-top behaviour, whether with the cab driver or her niece or with the niece’s boyfriend, fails to evoke laughter. Even the track of the transvestite brother of Meenal looks out of place. The angle of black magic seems ridiculous and the repetition of the scene in which a scary lady runs out of Sudha Mishra’s house at several points in the narration is irritating. Quite early on, the viewer starts wondering why the film was made in the first place and he just doesn’t get the answer till the end! Tejpal Singh Rawat’s dialogues are good only at places.
Dimple Kapadia acts ably but the weak script is the dampener. Sumit Suri is okay as Sumit. Sabeena Sheema does well as Suman. Manu Rishi Chadha has his moments. Anand Tiwari is natural to the core but he gets very little scope. Dipti T. Pujari makes her presence felt in the role of Gopa. Geetika Tyagi
(Meenal) stands out in a brief role. Vishal Sharma looks handsome and performs well as Raj. Manjot Singh is good. Mithun Rodwittiya does a fair job. Sheetal is alright as Tombi. Varun Thakur (as Ankit), Sunil Sehrawat (as Sompal), Tejpal Singh Rawat (as the tantrik), Naresh Gosain (as Hardyal), Paramjyot Singh (as Pummy’s father), Pratibha (as Tombi’s mother), Kalpana (as Hooda’s wife), Ram Kukreja (as Bhalla), Shiv Kumar and Sidharth (both as Bhalla’s assistants), Aanaya Kumar (as the cab driver) and the others lend able support.
Gurmmeet Singh’s direction is ordinary. His narrative style does not succeed in keeping the audience’s interest alive for too long. Of course, the weak script is also to be blamed. Music (scored by Amartya Raut, Sandeep Chatterjee, Indraneel Hariharan and Dhruv Dhalla) and lyrics (by Manoj Yadav, Tejpal Singh Rawat, Rajesh Chawla and Puneet Krishna) are ordinary. Madhu Neelkandan’s camerawork is quite alright. Parvez-Firoz’s action scenes are functional. Mukund Gupta’s sets are okay. Cheragh Todiwala’s editing is not very good.
On the whole, What The Fish will meet with a disastrous fate at the ticket windows.