Hell breaks loose throughout the duration of debutant film director Samir Tewari’s Mr Joe B Carvalho because there’s a daft detective (Arshad Warsi), an eloped heiress (Geeta Basra), some crazy assassins (Jaaved Jafferi, Vijay Raaz, Vrajesh Hirjee), some incompetent cops headed by Soha Ali Khan and God alone who else, chasing one another’s tail in madcap situations set against the backdrop of a marriage.
Ideally, this detective comic-thriller that spoofs mainstream Hindi cinema in a small degree attempts to be somewhat like Hollywood’s Naked Gun series. And it should have made for a goofy film. But after a promising start, Joe B… fails.
Forget laughter, the frequent use of in-house jokes and one-liners that are staples with actors like Arshad Warsi and Jaaved Jafferi, who have built their personalities around comic repartee, fall flat in the film because they are so amateurish.
When you are asked to laugh at a visually-impaired person (Himani Shivpuri) falling off balconies or bumping into furniture, or the cross-dressing killer Carlos (Jafferi) — who keeps uttering, Carlos, maut (death) aur potti (shit) come unannounced’ or the lollipop-licking Joe B Carvalho (whose name is often punned on in Hindi), it’s funny for a bit. You can’t cackle for two hours over such insensitivity.
Arshad is a competent actor and does justice to the daft detective role. Soha tries her best to seduce Arshad and the camera in a bikini, mini and a towel. However unlike her mother Sharmila Tagore, Soha lacks sensuality. Himani Shivpuri is good. But the rest of the actors ham.
It’s a pity that the writer and director didn’t pay more attention. Had the film been as honourable as their intentions seemed (of making a clean comedy that is neither slapstick nor adult), this genre may have actually got a fillip.
A detective who’s entrusted the task of finding an eloped heiress gets drawn into a complex situation involving an international killer.
The Times of India