Movie Review: Kamaal Dhamaal Malamaal (2012)

0.5 Stars (out of 4)

Buy the DVD at Amazon
Buy the soundtrack at Amazon

Even after watching Kamaal Dhamaal Malamaal, I’m not sure what it’s about. Sure, I can tell you who the characters are and what happens to them, but what is the movie about? Kamaal Dhamaal Malamaal lacks a coherent narrative and, as such, is a boring, pointless waste of time.

Without a compelling story to drive the plot along, the burden of carrying the film falls on the shoulders of its lead character, Johnny (Shreyas Talpade). Few lead characters are so woefully unsuited for the task of carrying a film as Johnny is.

Johnny is a good-for-nothing 25-year-old. He has no job, hoping instead to get rich from playing the lottery (his girlfriend buys him his tickets). He refuses to help his ailing father with chores, instead berating his sisters into doing the work for him.

The girlfriend, Maria (Madhurima), must have incredibly low self-esteem to have settled for an irredeemable loser like Johnny. Maria’s father, Peter (Paresh Rawal), hates Johnny’s dad, David (Om Puri), for stealing his girlfriend when they were young and won’t allow Johnny to marry Maria. Her three beefy brothers regularly beat up Johnny to keep him away from Maria.

One day, a buff stranger (Nana Patekar) with a big appetite arrives in town. Johnny convinces his family that the stranger is his long-lost brother Sam. They feed the stranger, who acts as Johnny’s bodyguard, when he’s in the mood. Eventually, Johnny hears a rumor that “Sam” is a murderer and a rapist, and sets about trying to make Sam leave town.

That’s the story. As I said before, I know what happened in the movie, but I don’t know why. Why am I supposed to care about a doofus like Johnny? Where’s the conflict? Sam’s presence doesn’t help Johnny get any closer to marrying Maria, nor does Johnny learn any lessons about the value of hard work from his fake brother.

There’s really nothing to recommend this movie. It’s little more than long passages of overly explanatory dialog punctuated by fistfights. All of the characters are dullards, with actor-writer Neeraj Vora reserving the only mildly amusing character — an opportunistic coffin maker — for himself.

Leave it to Priyadarshan — the director responsible for the worst film I’ve ever seen, Khatta Meetha — not to let the opportunity for some casual sexual violence against women pass him by. Why does Sam have to be an alleged murderer and a rapist? Isn’t being a murderer bad enough?

The only worthwhile element of Kamaal Dhamaal Malamaal is the song “Dariya Ho” (which itself is derivative of “Chaiyya Chaiyya” from Dil Se). I’ve embedded the video of the song below to save you from wasting your money on an otherwise worthless film.


13 thoughts on “Movie Review: Kamaal Dhamaal Malamaal (2012)

  1. Pingback: Opening September 28: Kamaal Dhamaal Malamaal and OMG « Access Bollywood

    1. Kathy

      “I was sent to see KDM yesterday” — since I went of my own accord, I had the hardest time convincing myself to stay through the whole movie. I did, but I didn’t need to. It was awful throughout. I’m waiting to read your OMG review until after I see the movie on Monday, but you’ve given me hope, Keyur. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. TS

    after watching disasters like Khatta meetha n tezz I thought u would skip this movie. end of Mr. Priyadarshan ‘s career in Hindi films.

    1. Kathy

      I watch these stinkers so you don’t have to, TS. ๐Ÿ™‚ With Paresh Rawal, Nana Patekar, and Om Puri in the cast, I thought it had the potential to be good. The story let them down.

  3. TS

    I watched Pan Singh Tomar yesterday n its a great film. they should have considered this movie for oscars instead of barfi. I think the jury also favors only big production houses.

    1. Kathy

      You’re probably right about the big studios getting preference in Oscar bids, TS, since they are the studios who can finance promotional campaigns in the U.S. I think Paan Singh Tomar was on the list of films the committee considered, but it was probably good that it wasn’t chosen since it wouldn’t stand a chance at the Oscars. PST has a good story, but the movie isn’t well-organized and doesn’t explain enough of India’s geographical and political history to be fully accessible to non-Indian audiences. There are some great comments following my review of PST that are worth reading.

  4. Pingback: Opening October 5: English Vinglish « Access Bollywood

  5. Keyur Seta

    I am glad to know you liked OMG, Kathy ๐Ÿ™‚
    Lo! Yes, I mentioned ‘I was sent’ because of the content of the film (if any) ๐Ÿ™‚

    I returned home late after watching OMG on Thursday night. The press show of KDM was Friday early morning and the venue was very far from my place. So I took an early morning train which was followed by a long bus ride. All this for a film like KDM ๐Ÿ˜€

  6. Pingback: Worst Bollywood Movies of 2012 « Access Bollywood

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