Movie Review - Well Done Abba

By: Amit R Agarwal

Welcome To Sajjanpur showcased that Shyam Benegal can make a movie that is not only critically-acclaimed, but a commercial success as well. Guess, WTS was Benegal's first commercial success.

Benegal has tried to cast Well Done Abba in the same mould, but this time he fails to pack in the punch. Which is surprsing since the film's story is the now famously told story of a man complaining about the theft of his 'well' to the authorities. he idea of course, is to highlight the corruption.

Like WTS, WELL DONE ABBA, is also set in rural India and has primarily rural characters. The credits show that the film is adapted from 'Narsaiyyan Ki Bavdi', 'Phulwa Ka Pul' and 'Still Waters'.

Armaan Ali (Boman Irani) is a driver for a MD in Mumbai. The film opens with the MD firing Armaan as he had overshot his leave. Armaan starts narrating his tale to his bemused employer.

He had to go to village for his teenage daughter (Minissha Lamba), who according to his twin brother Rehman (Boman Irani) and his wife Salma (Ila Arun), is getting out of control.

However the fact is that Rehman and Salma are wanted in village for petty thefts. In this confusion, Armaan is cajoled by a photographer to get a baavdi for free. Thus, Armaan undertakes a journey to avail a government scheme to dig a well. Things spiral out of control, so much so that the government is about to collapse.

WELL DONE ABBA is a story with a message, only that the film is marred by a lethargic pace.

The pre-interval portion is still watchable, but it is the post-interval portion that is a real test for the audiences.


Performances - first rate


Writing - could have been infinitely better in 2nd half.
Editing - could have easily done away with a few scenes.


An average fare that might appeal to audiences who know the expectations from a Shyam Benegal movie.

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