May 21, 2023
by Carla Hay
Directed by Abu Aleeha
Urdu with subtitles
Culture Representation: Taking place in Pakistan, the comedy film “Super Punjabi” features an all-Pakistani cast of characters representing the working-class, middle-class and wealthy.
Culture Clash: An accountant who has been fired decides to get revenge on his former boss by robbing him with the help of a bungling thief.
Culture Audience: “Super Punjabi” will appeal primarily to people who don’t mind watching mindless comedies.
“Super Punjabi” starts off being a mildly amusing comedy, but the silly antics get more irritating until everything becomes a mess halfway through the movie. The plot of an accountant wanting to rob his ex-boss takes too long to start in this moronic film. “Super Punjabi” wastes a lot of time (more than two-thirds of the movie) showing the vengeful ex-employee and the bungling thief accomplice are sidetracked by a lot of silly antics.
Written and directed by Abu Aleeha, “Super Punjabi” (which takes place in an unnamed part of Pakistan) is a movie with a very weak plot and a lot of filler, including very hokey musical numbers with trite and forgettable songs. The movie begins by showing that accountant Sakhi Jutt (played by Mohsin Abbas Haider) seems to be living a charmed life. He and his wife Sahiba (played by Saima Baloch) have a loving and stable marriage. Sakhi also seems to be doing well in his career.
But Sakhi’s life falls apart when he gets fired for what he believes are unfair reasons. And then one day, Sakhi comes home around 2 p.m. to surprise Sahiba with a romantic gift of flowers. Sakhi sees the door to their bedroom is closed and a man’s shoes are outside the room. Sakhi can hear the voice of a man and Sahiba laughing. A jealous Sakhi can only think the worst: Sahiba must be having an affair with another man.
Of course, in a stupid movie like “Super Punjabi,” you can already predict that it’s probably be a misunderstanding. Instead of opening the door to find out what’s really going on, Sakhi angrily storms out of the house and disappears for two days without telling anyone where he is during those two days. During his “disappearance,” Sakhi decides he needs to get more money to save his marriage. And in order to do that, Sakhi decides he’s going to rob his wealthy ex-boss Zaid Gill (played by Iftikhar Thakur), who fired Sakhi.
On the first night that Sakhi has left his home, he gets carjacked by a bungling thief named Miskeen Butt (played by Nasir Chinyoti), who has no idea that Sakhi is about to take him on a wild ride. Sakhi tells Miskeen: “You picked the wrong guy on the wrong day.” Sakhi then proceeds to drive like a madman on the streets until Miskeen gives up his intention to steal the car.
Instead, Sakhi and Miskeen end up having dinner together at a cafe. Miskeen tells Sakhi that he wanted to steal the car because Miskeen’s wife and mother-in-law have been berating him and physically abusing him for not making enough money. Miskeen convinces Sakhi to give Miskeen a ride to a convenience store.
While they’re in the convenience store, Sakhi is shocked when Miskeen decides to commit an armed robbery of the store. The convenience store clerk who’s on duty pulls out a rifle. Shots are fired, a scuffle ensues, but Sakhi and Miskeen manage to escape with cash from the store. After Sakhi finds out that Miskeen has experience as a thief, he tells Miskeen that his ex-boss has a safe full of cash that they should rob. Miskeen reluctantly agrees to this plan.
Meanwhile, two criminals named Jazzy (played by Saquib Sumeer) and Jagoo (played by Adnan Shah Tipu) have been watching this near-debacle from the parking lot of the convenience store. They follow Sakhi and Miskeen into an empty lot and try to rob Sakhi and Miskeen of the money that Sakhi and Miskeen stole from the grocery store. More scuffling and shootouts occur.
“Super Punjabi” then becomes a repetitive bore of Sakhi and Miskeen trying to dodge Jazzy and Jagoo. There’s also a subplot involving another thief named Maujoo (played by Nawaz Anjum), who wants the money in the safe too. Zaid has a trophy wife named Madam Zara (played by Sana Fakhar) who has a role in this crime conspiracy. And, of course, an unimaginative movie like “Super Punjabi” has an incompetent police officer named Waheed (played by Qaiser Piya), who is the main investigating officer.
The acting in “Super Punjabi” is almost as bad as the movie’s screenplay and direction. The characters in the movie are hollow and annoying. There’s also a lot of choppy film editing that makes “Super Punjabi” look like it was made by amateurs with a sizeable production budget. The comedy in “Super Punjabi” often falls flat. And the action scenes just look idiotic. “Super Punjabi” is a mindless film in every sense of the word, because it’s the type of junk that viewers will quickly forget if they have the misfortune of seeing it.
Eveready Pictures released “Super Punjabi” in select U.S. cinemas and in Pakistan on May 12, 2023.