Homi Adajania’s Finding Fanny is the comic journey of five people who embark on a road trip to find one man’s missing love. Unfortunately the movie fails to hit home because of the weak script and direction.
The story, which is based in the village of Pocolim in Goa (which you’ll never find even if you attempt to try), is set in motion when Ferdie (Naseeruddin Shah) receives an undelivered letter that he had written to his inamorata known as Fanny, 46 years ago. Distressed that the latter would never know that she was the only one he ever loved and pined for, he decides to find her.
In the grand scheme of things, it never occurs to Ferdie that she may have died, relocated to another country – you get my drift? As they say, it’s hard to be sensible and pragmatic while you are in love.
|Arjun Kapoor, Deepika Padukone, Naseeruddin Shah, Dimple Kapadia and Pankaj Kapoor in a scene from "Finding Fanny". – Courtesy Photo|
While Ferdie’s decision to look for his beloved Fanny is central to the film, the motivations of the other characters – Angie (Deepika Padukone), Savio De Gama (Arjun Kapoor), Rosalina (Dimple Kapadia), Don Pedro (Pankaj Kapoor) – are incomprehensible and jarringly contrived.
Angie is no stranger to heartbreak; she became a widow on her wedding day when the groom had a mishap involving the wedding cake. She decides to plan the trip for Ferdie. Savio is Angie’s childhood friend but is resentful that she married someone else. The cringe-worthy Rosalina is Angie’s mother-in-law whereas the debauched Don Pedro is an artist.
|Deepika Padukone and Naseeruddin Shah in a scene from "Finding Fanny". – Courtesy Photo|
What ensues as these five Goans take off to find Fanny is an eclectic journey of sorts, and one which makes little to no sense. There were instances in the movie that left yours truly agape – not because of any form of wonderment, but for the glaring inconsistencies and forced humour that does nothing to salvage the weak storyline.
Take the instance where Ferdie throws Rosalina’s pet cat out of the window of the car. It is absurd to even start to ask why. The moment may get a few laughs, fair criticism from animal right activists (the film landed in trouble with the Animal Welfare Board in India), but mostly it invites despair.
Dimple Kapadia gave a stellar performance in Dil Chahta Hai while playing the role of an alcoholic mother. Her acting redefined the notion of veteran actors in contemporary films, but you would do well to forget that she is a part of the cast in Finding Fanny. Shown as an exceedingly big-bossomed matron who is lusted after by Don Pedro, her role and her appearance is unbefitting to her acting prowess and age.
|Pankaj Kapoor and Dimple Kapadia in a scene from "Finding Fanny"|
Deepika has little to offer, except that she looks gorgeous, and so does Arjun Kapoor with his perpetually sullen face throughout the movie.
|Deepika Padukone and Arjun Kapoor in a scene from "Finding Fanny". – Courtesy Photo|
Naseeruddin Shah is a tad bit annoying with his dream-like tendencies, while Pankaj Kapoor as the lustful artist is somewhat memorable.
If judged on a scene-to-scene basis, Finding Fanny isn’t completely terrible at what it sets out to be, but when seen as a coherent whole, it leaves a lot to be desired.