MSM Motion Pictures, Saraswati Entertainment and Rising Sun Films’ Piku (UA) is the story of a girl and her aged father, who live in Delhi. Piku (Deepika Padukone) lives with her aged father, Bhaskor Banerjee (Amitabh Bachchan). Her mother is no more and, therefore, the responsibility of looking after her father is hers. She divides her time between her work place and her home.
Bhaskor Banerjee has constipation problems and is, therefore, always frustrated. He is also a hypochondriac, fearing that he suffers from many diseases. Piku is fed up of her dad giving so much importance to the problem of his irregular and unpredictable bowel movements. Of course, she loves him which is why she has given up the thought of marriage although being of marriageable age. On his part, her father, selfish by nature, also does not want Piku to marry.
One day, Bhaskor Banerjee announces his decision to visit his home town, Calcutta, where his younger brother lives with his wife in their ancestral home. While Piku, practical as she is, wants that the ancestral home should be sold off, Bhaskor Banerjee won’t hear anything of that. Anyway, as per Banerjee’s wish, the father and daughter prepare to travel to Calcutta by road. Piku books the taxi of Rana Chaudhary (Irrfan Khan). Since no driver of Rana is willing to drive Piku due to previous bad experiences, owner Rana himself doubles up as their driver.
During the journey, Rana realises how Banerjee’s life revolves around his bowel movements. Piku, who has been far from fond of Rana, becomes friendly with him during the journey. The friendship even turns to love after they reach Calcutta where Rana stays back for a couple of days. The Banerjees in Calcutta are also briefly joined by Piku’s maternal aunt, Chhobi (Moushumi Chatterjee). Meanwhile, Rana keeps recommending home remedies for Bhaskor Banerjee’s constipation problems. And then, it’s time for Rana to leave for Delhi.
What happens thereafter? Is Bhaskor Banerjee cured? Or does his constipation problem continue? Do Piku and Rana get married to one another?
Juhi Chaturvedi has written a very unusual story which uses an aged man’s bowel movements as the focal point. Although it looks too stretched at times, it is, nevertheless, very interesting for the class audience only. Juhi Chaturvedi’s screenplay is superb but again, it will be appreciated by the class audience, mostly in the big cities. Her screenplay is engaging and very entertaining for the target audience. The drama does take a dip a little before interval but it picks up again post-interval. Of course, the feeling that too much importance is being given to the topic of constipation (which, incidentally, is a very common problem) does irritate the viewers. The masses, especially those frequenting single-screen cinemas and those in the smaller centres, will find the drama as being a case of much ado about nothing. But the elite audience will feel greatly amused and entertained by the humorous screenplay. The subtle romantic track of Piku and Rana will be simply loved, again only by the niche audience. Juhi Chaturvedi’s dialogues are gems and serve to create a lot of humour, evoking smiles and laughter at a lot of places for the target audience.
Amitabh Bachchan, Deepika Padukone and Irrfan Khan have all performed so wonderfully that their acting becomes a huge plus point. Amitabh Bachchan gets into the skin of the character he plays and delivers an unbelievably brilliant performance. His Bengali accent, his nuances, facial expressions and body language are all to die for. Deepika Padukone is outstanding in the title role. She is so natural that it doesn’t even look like she is acting. She shines in her role, and her dialogue delivery and facial expressions are mind-blowing. Irrfan Khan is also as natural as natural can be. He performs so excellently that he makes the character of Rana Chaudhary supremely lovable. His expressions, body language and dialogue delivery are outstanding. All in all, the three lead actors have delivered performances worthy of awards. Moushumi Chatterjee is very cute and endearing. Raghubir Yadav delivers a restrained performance as Banerjee’s doctor. Jisshu Sengupta lends decent support as Piku’s working partner, Syed. Balendra Singh is quite nice as Banerjee’s servant, Budhan. Swaroopa Ghosh has her moments as Piku’s paternal aunt. Sajal Bhattacharya makes his presence felt in the role of Piku’s paternal uncle. Nutan Mathur is first-rate as Rana’s overbearing mother. Prerna Chawla (as Rana’s sister, Ritu) and Rupsa Banerjee (as Eisha) are alright. Kanupriya leaves a mark in a brief role as Piku’s maid servant. Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury (as Nobendu) and Akshay Oberoi (as Aniket), are adequate. Others provide the desired support.
Shoojit Sircar’s direction is sensitive and truly fantastic. He keeps the entertainment quotient alive right from the start till the end. But, like the script, his narrative style is so subtle that it would appeal to the classes only. Anupam Roy’s music is alright but no song is of the kind which will become popular. A couple of songs, of course, are tuneful. Manoj Yadav and Anupam Roy’s lyrics are fair but not easy on the lips. Anupam Roy’s background music is of a very fine standard. Kamaljeet Negi’s camerawork is splendid. Whether it is Calcutta, Delhi, Varanasi or Gujarat, he captures the locations in his camera rather wonderfully. Mansi Dhruv Mehta’s production designing is lovely. Chandrashekhar Prajapati’s editing is terrific.
On the whole, Piku has sectional appeal only. It is entertaining and very different from the usual commercial films but it will be loved by only the class audience and will, therefore, score in good multiplexes, mainly in the cities. But business in lesser multiplexes, single-screen cinemas and smaller centres will be low as the masses will not take to the drama. Its business will fall quite short of the investment made in the film. Release of one big film almost every week now will be a major factor to greatly limit the film’s box-office prospects.