Bollywood man of the moment Abhishek Bachchan loves playing the trickster. After striking gold as a small town crook in the hit comedy Bunty Aur Babli he returns in Rohan Sippy's Bluff Master as Roy, a slick con-artist who takes a junior swindler (Riteish Deshmukh) under his wing while trying to win back his ex-girlfriend (Priyanka Chopra). Adapted from acclaimed Argentinean film Nine Queens, this is arguably one of the most energetic and hilarious comedies to have come out of Bollywood this year.
He may be a professional when it comes to scamming an unsuspecting public, but pulling the wool over his girlfriend Simi's (Chopra) eyes proves more difficult when Roy is caught in the act of conning her own family. Dumped and distraught, the last thing he needs is small time fraudster Dittu (Deshmukh) asking him for tips when he should be reforming himself. But helping Dittu avenge his father's demise at the hands of a loaded hotelier and local mobster (Nana Patekar) and, of course, lining his own pockets in the process, proves difficult to resist. Soon the pair are knee deep in gangsters, guises and great gags courtesy of scriptwriter Shridhar Raghavan.
Like most films nowadays a twist in the plot is essential and Bluffmaster! is no different, delivering its sting in the tail with relative ease. Again it's thanks to Raghavan's cleverly constructed storyline and Sippy's confident direction that the twist comes across as believable. But the film's biggest plus point is the fantastic performances by its supporting cast, Deshmukh and Patekar in particular. The duo exhibit great comic timing, and by breathing life into their eccentric characters provide Bachchan with a harebrained sidekick and sardonic archenemy.
In Hindi with English subtitles.