Is the movie worth your buck?

Khalid Mohamed’s movie review: The legend of Michael Mishra

Khalid Mohamed

Khalid Mohamed

By Khalid Mohamed
First published on

Aha, here’s director Manish Jha trying ever so desperately to make you go ha-ha. Bah, he shouldn’t have. The script merely goes blah blah. As for the direction, acting and whatever there is of the plot, it’s neither cool nor hot. Truly, the outcome could have been bunged together by a bored-out-of-his-wits tiny tot.

So, why on earth would anyone venture into The Legend Of Michael Mishra? One, because the director’s name does carry some heft, what with his previous commendable, socially concerned outings Matrubhoomi and Anwar.

And two for checking out Arshad Warsi, who’s usually worth a dekko, shukriya to his flair for comic timing. Alas, this self-described legend’s bhaigiri catches both Mishra and Warsi at their dithering worst.

Truly those who survive this downpour of fiddlesticks-‘n’-nonsense should be awarded free umbrellas, painkillers and eau de cologne-splashed cold compressors. It’s that tortuous. And oh my gaudy, the set designs are so garish and kitschy that the eyes (even if you put on dark glasses) boggle. Vis-à-vis the falooda-colour costumes and the flood-lit cinematography, let’s not even go there. No repair for such despair.

If you are a glutton for punishment, over then to Full Pants (Boman Irani wearing Tomato Red Full Pants) who serves as a sutradhar of sorts. Entraps he, a bunch of sun-bleached tourists to listen to the story of the one-man grin revolution aka Michael Mishra (Warsi). A kidnapping specialist of Patna, with a cage in his den and all, he’s as if not more thick-skinned as a rhinoceros. And among his flunkeys, do count a bozo (Kayoze Irani), who constantly goes smirk-smirk. Irk.


Next, you’re informed that Mishraji has been nuts about an almond-eyed Varsha Shukla (Aditi Rao Hydari) since time immemorial. Almond Girl, however, is a wannabe heroine, partial to gobbledygook Bihari-English and at a talent contest puts up a performance which makes you wince, “Someone in the choreography department, do help the bechari.”

Ensues much yawn-tertainment. Almond Girl wants the Kidnap King to give up crime (so do you), reform ASAP and only then, can there be a yippee ending. Grrrroan.

Incidentally, why they communicate through letters and notes in the age of SMS and WhatsApp is absolutely beyond human comprehension. The only explanation: so a song about Luv Letters can be incorporated in the soundtrack. Hummm?

And why oh why that odd reference to the harmonica ditty of Sholay? Now, that’s a humdinger if ever there was one.

About the only pertinent statement in the course of this 124-minuter is made by Almond Girl when she suggests that the legend should get his “dimaag thikaane par”, underscoring the point that there’s no dimaag or even dil anywhere remotely in sight.

Warsi, Boman Irani and son Kayoze Irani (quite likeable in Student Of The Year) compete with one another in the ham-till-you-drop department. Aditi Rao Hydari can’t rise above her insubstantial role.

Serious advice: AVOID.

Rating: One star

Original Link of the Review

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