Jackpot: Two con artists will have you in splits

A madcap comedy, Jackpot tells the tale of two con women Akshaya (Jyotika) and Masha (Revathy)—earning their living duping people a la the legendary outlaw Robin Hood. While they are pretty successful at what they do, they aren’t stable financially and hope to better their position.

A chance encounter with an elderly woman in jail sets the story rolling. The woman spins a mythical tale about a magical vessel that has the ability to inexplicably increase the count of any object that’s placed within it. Totally taken in by her words, Akshaya and Masha want the magic vessel at all costs. No easy task this—the pot is believed to be buried in the property of Maanasthan (Anandaraj), a powerful gangster who has politically ambitions too. And if that isn’t enough there’s another road block to their riches and happiness—a violent bull.

Films on con artists generally have a thriller or a comedy setting. Director Kalyaan chose the latter and he has held it well—to pack the film with enough comedy elements to engage the viewers. While his writing isn’t in top gear at all times, the deft direction and performances ensure that the film chugs along without any major hiccups.

What’s critical for slapstick humor is the pacing and Director Kalyaan has kept it flowing. While some of the incidents lack logic, it’s one heck of a crazy ride as scenes follow at a frenetic pace—which doesn’t leave you with much time to think. The film also has a good support cast of comedy artists, all of whom are at ease in such a wacky film that provides comic relief for most parts.

Jyotika, like her previous release Raatchasi, dominates the narrative with her screen presence. She has a few sequences that demand comic timing and she cracks them. Revathy, who has done many a memorable comic acts in her distinguished career, performs her part with ease, though her loony act at times appear contrived. Nevertheless, the duo shares a rollicking camaraderie that’s a treat to watch.

It’s not often that you see women dominating a fun-filled film and that’s probably the USP of Jackpot. With a plethora of men around them as character artists, the two leading women have a gala time from start to the end. Not all the jokes are laughable but as mentioned earlier, the brisk pacing ensures that it does not tire you. “Motta” Rajendran as the accomplice is a riot while the other major performer is Anandaraj, who not only has a lot of situational humor but also plays a hilarious dual role as Maanasthan’s sister.

The colorful tone of the film also reflects in its two songs, which aren’t really needed in the narrative but are placed to uplift the entertainment quotient. Jyotika seems to enjoy playing the tomboyish heroine and the affable Revathy is the perfect foil.

Overall, Jackpot is a mindless entertainer that guarantees quite a few laughs. It’s not the perfect comic fare but the absence of double-entendre jokes and the quick pacing makes it a decent watch for family audiences.

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