The only reason to be even remotely interested in Club 60 is not the pairing of Farroque Shaikh and Sarika as most would believe, but the strong presence of actors like Tinu Anand,Satish Shah,Sharat Saxena, Vineet Kumar and Raghuveer Yadav in the film. However,when you have such a colourful palette of talent and you get the dullest of canvases in the end, you might as well throw the brush away.
The film begins Farooque in the back seat of a car, going past busy Mumbai streets. The longest ever voiceover probably seen in any cinema ,tells us his depressive thoughts in bookish words like how he lives in his “kaano ko behra karne waala sannaata” world. Tragedy has struck his idyllic life with wife,Sarika.The two have just lost their son to a shootout in Denver. Farroque, who is a neurosurgeon, has stopped working and now wallows in his balcony all day. Sarika, also a doctor, puts her grief aside and continues to lead her regular life. Incidentally, it is her strength and her scenes, that create deeply touching moments as intended by the film. However, the inherent melodrama throughout the film that harps on the couple’s tragedy, invariably pulls the movie down under its own slow pace.
An annoying neigbour,overacted due to overwritten lines, by Raghuveer Yadav, introduces Farooque to Club 60 where he and his friends play tennis. Forced attempts at humour on the court, follow.Emotional Shayar, Tinu Anand’s loud farts on the tennis court; the lusty, retired army officer,Saxena’s frustration with Yadav’s teasing ;Vineet Kumar’s PJ smses; stockbroker,Satish Shah’s miserly ways; simply fall flat with every scene. The more Yadav talks and talks, the dialogues get longer, the voice gets louder. Predictably, through all this, Farooque discovers that life is not all fun and games for the club 60 members.
The most jarring part of the film is the overhyped lead actor, Farooque Sheikh, himself. Farooque has probably been luckier in his career than Jeetendra is perceived to be. His nondescript looks have brought him the most fabulous parts in movies like Chashme Baddoor,Shatranj Ke Khiladi and Katha.Post these highly acclaimed movies, he has never reinvented himself. In Club 60,he has very few lines since he plays a depressed character. He fails to rise above the clichéd scenes and does not move you in the least, despite the tragedy in his life.
Sarika is the only high point on the screen. She looks extremely graceful and dignified as the understanding doctor-wife and plays her character convincingly enough for one to overlook her somewhat childlike dialogue delivery.
Tinu Anand and Sharat Saxena are the most endearing of the remaining actors. Raghuveer irritates as he hams his way through his jovial antics. His T-shirts with funny one liners, bring more smiles than him. A brownie point to the costume designer and the director ,here .Zareena Wahab appears briefly in the most clichéd manner possible. Mona Wasu lights up the screen in what seems like a wonderful 10 minute break from the tiresome oldie, not so goldie buddy affair.
Writer/director,Sanjay Tripathi,has made science shows for BBC,National Geographic and Discovery. While he definitely has a great message to tell through his story, he ends up being more preachy than entertaining.
Sadly, there is nothing ‘heartfelt’ about Club 60. More heart ‘failed’.