What do you do when you feel betrayed by God? If God is responsible for wrecking buildings and houses through his own created calamities like Tsunami and earthquakes, then why cant He be convicted in court? This idea is behind the interesting postulation of Oh My God, the directorial debut of Umesh Shukla and co produced by Paresh Rawal and Akshay Kumar. But its imperative to translate a captivating premise into a riveting watch, through a tout screenplay, and thats where Oh My God falters badly.
The story revolves around Kanji Lalji Mehta ( Paresh Rawal), a Gujarati shop owner and a confirmed agnostic in God. His bread and butter is through his antique shop of idols and deities, which he sells to the people, exploiting the devout qualities of the common man. His life turns topsy turvy when he loses his shop in an earthquake, and his insurance film defies his compensation claim , terming it as an “Act of God“. Disheartened and distraught, he challenges the decision by taking both God and insurance firm to court, where he battles with a bunch of motley men, encompassing religious bigwigs, God men and Holy Men ( Mithun, Govind Namdeo). Amidst his chaotic life, enters Lord Krishna ( Akshay Kumar, in a modern day Bike!) who aids Kanji in his crusade and clearing off his mess that has enveloped his life.
OMG boasts of a courageous and novel story, with the chief protagonist questioning the existence of God, and subsequently, his battle with the religious Godmen and their coterie. But the film is overburdened with preachy messages and an overdrawn climax, only to categorise it into a strictly average viewing. What starts as a intriguing legal battle fizzles out meakly at the end, primarily because of the overstretched climactic portions , a verbose preachy screenplay and some over the top performances by the supporting cast. Specially the courtroom scenes , where you tend to get bored with all the discursive arguments being splashed- right, left and centre.
To give the film its credit, it definitely uproots its core issue in a convincing way- the misuse of religion by the modern day Godmen and Sadhus, and that God is in us, and not in temples and mosques. Dialogues like “Jahan dharam hai wahan satya ki jagah nahi hai. Aur jahan satya hai wahan dharam ki zaroorat hi nahi” carries the essence of Modern Day India. The social message comes strong and clean, and through that one man, who carries the entire film on his shoulders- Paresh Rawal. To term his performance as brilliant would be actually an understatement. Playing the role of a wise cracking atheist who is on a crusade against the existence of God and its collection agents, the indomitable actor renders a near to flawless performance. He sparkles in every frame, and keep the audience engaged and riveted to the proceedings. Infact, if OMG is worth a watch, its purely because of his convincing performance. He undoubtedly , is the show stopper of the movie.
Akshay Kumar as the modern day-Lord Krishna is a delight to watch, though he should have enjoyed a lengthier screen presence. The bantering and quirky conversations between Paresh and him are one of the highlights of this drama. Mithun Chakravorty, playing an effeminate Godmen, is wonderful. The veteran actor brings a novelty to his devilish act .
Govind Namdeo dissapoints big time, going overboard in almost every sequence. Mahesh Manjrekar plays his subdued role with perfection. Om Puri excels in his cameo role.
There is not much scope for songs in the movie, but the much touted item track of Go Go Go Govinda ( Sonakshi and Prabhu Deva) is peppy and energetic.
Watch OMG for his novel and pertinent theme, and a brilliant performance by Paresh Rawal. The film carries a wonderful social message, which comes loud and out on the screen. But if you are expecting to be gratified after the movie ends, hold your expectations there. The film falls short of your expectations!
Watch it out for: Paresh Rawal stupendous performance, and an absolutely novel theme