I knew from the moment I caught the first trailer of Sunday that it was a remake of the Telugu film Anukokunda Oka Roju; thanks to all the missing Sunday rigmarole. AOR was a much hyped and revered movie but one which I found to be a complete dud, an ignominy, an apology of a movie! With that apprehension hangover, I wouldn’t have seen Sunday at all if it weren’t for the trailers that seemed to hint that it was a comedy caper and also Director Rohit Shetty’s pedigree (with Zameen and Golmaal behind him). So I threw caution to the winds and saw Sunday….on a Monday
Sunday, in one phrase, is a comical-jigsaw-puzzle-esque-whodunit! Seher (Ayesha Takia) is a Delhi gal who works as a voiceover artiste and has a knack of forgetting things. She and her friend Ritu (Anjana Sukhani) attend a disco party on a Saturday night and have a fun time. Seher wakes up on what seems like the next day and finds that she’s being pursued by a handful of strangers for no apparent reason. Taxi driver Ballu (Arshad Warsi) and his friend Kumar (Irrfan Khan) keep pestering her for money that they claim she owes them and is also attacked by a mob of thugs. She comes into contact with corrupt police officer Rajveer (Ajay Devgan) who takes a liking towards her and tries to unravel the mystery behind these apparently random occurrences. It transpires that Seher has no recollection of what happened in her life between Saturday night and Monday morning – hence a Missing Sunday!!! Rajveer, with the help of Ballu and Kumar, piece together this jigsaw puzzle and ultimately unravel what really happened on that fateful Sunday.
Storywise, the film stays close to the Telugu original but deviates in the climax and that is reason enough for me to have liked it. Each character is meticulously crafted and developed right at the beginning and in an unobtrusive manner, the seed of the climax is sown in the first half itself. And though the shock value of each of the jigsaw piece coming together was much more in the Telugu version, this one does manage to evoke a raised eyebrow or two as the revelations tumble out. The casting is spot-on and each of the lead cast members put in a decent, if not commendable, performance. The stars-of-the-show are obviously Arshad Warsi and Irrfan Khan and their mindblowing comic chemistry. Arshad does well as the harried taxi driver and though some of his sequences are downright banal, he more than makes up for those with his witty one-liners and comic mannerisms. Irrfan Khan is a complete surprise package. He portrays a wannabe-actor quite effortlessly and evokes mirth at almost every scene. Be it his Ravan avatar or Don 3 caper or his Himesh Reshammiya impersonation, he delivers a top-drawer performance. Ayesha Takia does well in the primary role but isn’t able to convey that surprised and shocked expressions that the second-half demanded (I liked Charmme’s portrayal in the telugu version better). Ajay Devgan is pretty plastic and comes across as a cross between a brooding and suave guy and a gay funnyman! Mukesh Tiwari is wasted as the sidekick cop. Anjana Sukhani is pretty but has the voice of a creaky door!
One of Sunday’s primary drawback is that it tries too be too much stylish and happening! In an effort to grab multiple eyeballs, the director resorts to spectacular chases and car-chases, gravity-defying bamboo stunts (lifted out of Okkadu), bone-crunching and slow-motion-laden fights. Quite unnecessarily that too! Gimme a taut screenplay and nail-biting drama instead. Picturisation & locales are another gripe. When the movie is set in Delhi, pray why shoot in Ramoji Film City – which almost every movie buff knows by sight??? The movie’s music is good in parts; kashmakash & loot liya being my favourites. The unravelling of the mystery at the climax could have been made better but given that there was no scope for any red herrings, I guess it was the best possible way to end it. I’d give it an extra point just for the fact that the climax DID NOT have cults, fire gods or any such nincompoopery! Thanks to Rohit Shetty for choosing an alternative to that abominable ending in the Telugu version.