Utt Pataang is a film on a trip of its own. The characters converse and unload their treasures of PJs uninhibitedly and the scenes drag on endlessly, with a total disregard for the viewer who might have come for a good time in the hope of finding a delightful sitcom, lured by the title of the film and the presence of Vinay Pathak. Instead, the insipid dialogues and bullock-cart pace handicap most of the actors, and the most entertaining part of the whole running time turns out to be the ads that are shown in the interval.
The film aspires to be a situational drama, bringing together a motley crowd of people who act fishy due to the presence of a mysterious bag stacked with money, but as rivetting as the plot might sound, the lacklustre treatment and the stage-like presentation turn the movie into a huge yawn-fest.
First to be shown among the disparate bunch is Ram (Vinay Pathak), who has recently broken up with his girlfriend Sanjana (Mahie Gill), and is in depression. Nandu (Saurabh Shukla) is a detective and Ram's best friend, who tries to fix up his friend with another girl to cure his loneliness. They find one, Koel (Mona Singh), in a bar, who is on her own after ending a 6-year-old relationship with her philandering boyfriend. Koel joins them not only for dinner, but also agrees to spend the night in Ram's house as she has nowhere else to go.
Meanwhile, Sanjana tries to get away from the country with a lot of money belonging to her current boyfriend Lucky (Vinay Pathak again), a Ram look-alike sporting a ridiculous French accent. Lucky is a gangster in Mumbai, but dances to the tune of his wife whose father is a rich Arab. The money sent by Lucky's wife to buy a house in Mumbai becomes the bone of contention, and the hunt for the elusive bag containing the money brings them all together.
A story that could have been moulded into a thriller-comedy banking on the credentials of the star-cast falls flat in Utt Pataang due to gaping loopholes in writing. It is very difficult to fathom why the mellow Ram falls for the foul-mouthed bar dancer Sanjana at the first place. Or how Koel, fresh out of a turbulent relationship, agrees to stay in the house of a complete stranger after one meeting. Also, the police brings the bag of money to Lucky after they find the letter 'L' written on the wads of notes. It's strange to know that there is only one person whose name starts with 'L' in the Mumbai metropolis.
And while the nerve-grating French accent of Lucky might have been intended to add to the quirkiness of the character, it would have helped if the film had elaborated on his French fixation a bit more. Finally, the unneccessary usage of words like 'condom', 'bra' and 'chaddi' feels like a desperate attempt to spice up proceedings - a loud laughtrack - and turns out to be trashy rather than humorous.
Saurabh Shukla's screenplay, unfolding the story in flashbacks, seems interesting, but it makes the scenes overlap and further slacken the already slow pace. The good ensemble of actors, too, does not salvage the movie. Vinay Pathak as Ram cannot add much to the monochromatic characterization, and suffers from a Steve Martin hangover as Lucky. Saurabh Shukla as Nandu does fine. Mahie Gill, who showed so much promise in Dev D
, needs only to shout and swear as the spitfire girlfriend. Mona Singh, as the vulnerable Koel, gives a decent performance. Sanjay Mishra, playing the kooky sidekick, is utterly wasted.
The music by Shamir Tandon does not add much, and the background score by Sanjoy Choudhury is heavily inspired by the song "Agar Tum Kaho" from Lakshya
Skip this one to get full value for your money.