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'Zed Plus' review: Poor screenplay dilutes the strong message in this political satire

'Zed Plus' review:  Poor screenplay dilutes the strong message in this political satire

Chandraprakash Dwivedi's satirical 'Zed Plus' falls short in spite of a solid star cast and a moderately well writt

A film which boasts of actors like Adil Hussain, Kulbhushan Kharbanda, KK Raina playing lead roles, should ideally be good but Chandraprakash Dwivedi's satirical 'Zed Plus' falls short in spite of a solid star cast and a moderately well written plot.

The film has Adil Hussain playing a mechanic Aslam, who fixes puntures of cars which travel to the famous 'Peepal Wale Peer Baba' in Fatehpur- a small town in Rajasthan. The town lives on the reflected glory of the dargah with everyone asking for a share of the money earned at the shrine. Aslam lives with his wife, Hameeda (TV actress Mona Singh) and son and his biggest enemy is his neighbour, Hidayatulla (Mukesh Tiwari) who also happens to be his erstwhile friend.

Fatehpur gets a facelift when the PM (Kulbhushan Kharbanda) decides to pay the shrine a visit. A chance encounter with Aslam Puncturewala, a few misunderstandings and the PM decides to provide Zed plus security to him. While the family initially loves the attention that comes along with security but soon they are compelled to request for their own space and ask the PM to withdraw security.

While the film's premise is quite topical, and it cleverly sends across a strong message on the country's bureaucracy as well as politics, it is the execution where the film falls flat. The actors are talented but clearly lack comic timing. An actor of Adil Hussain's caliber should ideally impress the viewer with his performance but Hussain seems rather uncomfortable in his small town mechanic role. In fact, Mukesh Tiwari as Husssain's neighbor has more spark in his performance.

The film uses cuss words funnily, making a caricature of almost every word. The story is based in a small town, but the lead actors have a very urban demeanor with clear diction which really sticks out in the whole film. The only person who manages to bring in the smiles is talented actor Sanjay Mishra, who plays a terrorist. In limited screen time, Mishra yet again proves that he is one of the most underrated actors of our time. Wish more filmmakers gave him films like 'Aankhon Dekhi'.

Chandraprakash Dwivedi, who is credited with TV series like 'Chanakya' and films like 'Pinjar', set out to make a film with a strong message. But a poor screenplay makes the film an average affair.

The film isn't bad, it is definitely not unwatchable- but with actors like Adil Hussain, KK Raina playing key roles, one hoped to be awestruck or overwhelmed. Sadly, 'Zed Plus' doesn't leave you with any such feeling.

first published:November 29, 2014, 11:06 IST