In the era of 80s when it was only Angry Young Man and the sprightly spirit doing the talking, a trio of Utpal Dutt, Hrishkesh Mukherjee and Amol Palekar emerged who totally changed the definitions of 80s cinema. What these three did through their moving pictures was candidly portray a middle class society with subtle humorous punches which made the films like Gol Maal a timeless classic.
A story about a wretched young man who is on a lookout for a job when lands himself a desirable job it happens to be at the behest of lies. He puts up a façade of being a simple middle class boy and hides his flamboyance and his love for sports behind the disguise of a moustache. The story than twists and turns in a way that leaves you laughing out loud.
The film is a classic because it is crisp paced and smartly scripted. In fact the mooch actually happens to be the anchor of the film. The entire film has quirky humor played around the mooch. The lie of having a twin who doesn’t have a mooch or Utpal Dutt’s statement that, iske paas mooch nahin … uske paas mann hi nahin hai, all of these still have a humorous ring to it. The film plays around with physical humor too. Yunus Parvez aka Bade Babu of this film has an irksome habit to pluck his nose hair, some might think of it as grimy for it is that but it is hilarious to see him do it and incense the wits out of you. Dina Pathak is splendidly good as Ramprasad/Lakshmanprasad’s fake mother. But Amol Palekar and Utpal Dutt are natural with their roles. They flawlessly get into the skin of their character and have an impeccable comic timing. Both are spontaneous and have grace and poise of the character they portray.
The story of the film is simplistically woven around an absurd situation which touches base with reality. All the characters and situations are closer to life yet they aren’t likely to happen in real life. In a way it is a story of a common man improvising to get through farcical trickery. This is what renders the film a relatable factor. The film has rib-tickling vestal Hindi dialogues given by Rahi Massom Raza which adds to the linguistic humor of the film. The shuddh Hindi at times gets the better of you and you find yourself laughing out in pain. The screenplay by Sachin Bhowmick is witty and fast paced with appropriate crispness to it. The conversation between each character has a different contour and hue to it. And speaking of the music, R.D.Burman’s melodies and Gulzar’s lyrics get etched in your memory and you often find yourself humming the songs.
Over all the film’s story is a clever spoof on middleclass mindset. It plays with the basic elements of movie-making yet is enjoyable and therefore, remains as one of the most cherished classic from Hindi cinema.