141 Min | Drama – Thriller | August 2014
IMDB Rating: 7.7
Director: Kunal Deshmukh
Starring: Emraan Hashmi, Narendra Jetley, Humaima Malik
Raja Natwarlal Review: Raja Natwarlal had good potential. Emraan Hashmi returns to the big screen after last year’s GHANCHAKKAR. He likes signing in for the movies that are promising and has potential to deliver something new and different. This one too is and it’s worth appreciating. But the problem lies in how the movie is handled. Anyways, the story is about Raja, who is a small time conman who gets his partner killed in an attempt to break into the big league. Then to avenge this death he seeks out a bigger retired conman to help him. Together they hatch a plan to steal the rich guy’s money so that Raja can marry his bar dancer sweetheart and avenge the death in one swoop.
The story of Raja Natwarlal, is core is OK and the little clever touches of con games are funny and entertaining at times. However, neither the characters nor their motivations are strong enough for us to root for either the conman or the rich cricket crazy dude getting conned. You are indifferent to their fates and that is totally dangerous in a movie which depends on your liking the con guy to make the story work. To make matters worse there is the romantic angle which just doesn’t work and which pulls the narrative down in its best parts with some soppy songs and unnecessary kisses.
In Raja Natwarlal, Emraan as Raja, Paresh Rawal as the master con and Kay Kay Menon as the rich guy are all great actors and their chemistry makes the movie extremely watchable in parts. They manage to create a good feeling of tension in a few crucial scenes. New actress, Pakistani import Humaima Malik is too thin to register on screen and the only way you can tell she is there is when there is some spangly costume floating about on the screen. Raja Natwarlal could have been infinitely smarter, funnier and way more taut given the story it was working with and the star cast. Instead what we get is patchy pieces of good action, silly songs and a storytelling session as we are tucked into bed. Anyhow, watchable it is.