Emraan Hashmi, who has evolved as a performer over the years, is ready with his next offering which is Why Cheat India. Based on the blatant scam that takes place across the country in the name of higher education, the Soumik Sen directorial is touted to be a mirror that reflects this harsh reality back to society. Did it succeed in its intentions? Let's find out...
The tale begins in a small town in Uttar Pradesh. Satyendra Dubey aka Sattu is a talented and hardworking student who manages to clear an entrance examination in a prestigious engineering college. He soon comes across Rakesh Singh, played by Emraan Hashmi, who promises him a bright future and a chance to make a quick buck.
Rakesh Singh aka Rocky is a middle-aged businessman who owns a photo studio but moonlights as a scam artist. He comes across the gifted Sattu and promises him riches in exchange for his services- that is he would write entrance exams in place of other students and pocket the money. Looking at his family's dire financial situation, Sattu agrees and through him, Rakesh meets Nupur, his elder sister, played by debutante Shreya Dhanwanthary. As the makings of a romance seem imminent between Rakesh and Nupur, it is revealed that he is actually married and so can't return her affections.
As we see in detail the complicated personal life of Rocky, it also becomes clear that his scam runs not only in the small town but across the entire country. However, as is the case with any rampant scam, the police catches wind of his business and try to get him arrested but it's a challenge due to lack of a paper trail. Meanwhile, Rakesh is looking to expand his empire from engineering right into MBA. Does he succeed in his ambitions or does the law catch up to him, makes up for the rest of the tale.
The film has a lot of things going for it. The fast pace which is maintained throughout, the influx of authentic characters, fun elements mostly in the form of dialogue and satire and of course, the brilliant on-screen presence of Emraan Hashmi. He is really convincing as the conniving Rakesh Singh. He is confident, charming and fiercely intelligent which is what makes the audience root for him in spite of his shady nature of business.
Newcomer Shreya Dhanwanthary also deserves a mention for she has done an impressive job. She really sells her character Nupur, who is a caring sister, pining for love and getting buried in the avalanche of family pressure to get married. The supporting cast is also solid which makes the film work seamlessly in parts.
However, the biggest problem with the film is the plot itself. What starts out as promising and exciting becomes a confusing mess in the second half which takes quite a while to get resolved. It is as if Why Cheat India tried to be too many things at once but ended up not being anything with full conviction. Overall, it is a decent entertainer that tried to tell a good message but kind of got lost in its way.
Cast: Emraan Hashmi, Shreya Dhanwanthary
What works: Performances, comic timing, dialogues, music
What doesn't: Parts of the storyline and screenplay
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