I remember having read of Robinhood - The Prince of Thieves long back; the outlaw who robbed the rich to lend a hand to the poor. Dressed in Lincoln green, Robinhood and his Merrymen roamed about Sherwood, heedless of the laws, and unmindful of the rules. Defender of the underdogs and a master of disguise, Robinhood was no common criminal.
Joshey's Robinhood has moved far away from Nottinghamshire and has made Cochin his haven. Venkatesh Iyer (Prithviraj) is a lecturer in Physics by the day, and a burglar who breaks into Automatic Teller Machines of the IBI bank by night. Having lost faith in ACP Harris (Jayasurya) the bank brings in Private investigator Alexander Felix (Narein) to nab the thief.
I would have been content if the spirit of adventure that characterizes all Robinhood stories had been kept in tact in the film as well. That is sadly not the case here. It does aim straight at the adrenaline glands, but so often misses its mark and lands right on your face instead.
I would tell you why. Precisely because the whole of the first hour of this movie has Venky walking in and out of ATM counters, inserting cards and making away with the loot. I would understand if it were done a couple of times, but since it happens every night, its only natural that you turn over and go to sleep, when the man goes about his business on his super mobike, with the hood and glasses in tact.
Then, the officer makes the discovery. There are these electro magnetic waves you see, around ATM counters, that our whiz kid R-hood manipulates to get the pin numbers, using a receptor that suspiciously looks like a Playschool kit. And he conveniently inserts mobile recharge coupons into the ATMs and robs the bank. That's wonderful really, except that better attempts have been made at story telling.
Apparently, the hero could be no greedy coin gulper. There is a sad story lurking somewhere in the past. It certainly isn't the film's fault if you had guessed it ten miles off.
Running for almost two hours and forty five minutes, it is mostly uneventful and falls apart like a pack of cards caught in the mildest breeze.
There is simply no end to the number of manholes that have been left uncovered on this scriptway. It would have been better if it provided senseless entertainment at least, even as it questions our intelligence. As if it isn't enough to have some fantastic theory shoved down our throats that makes robbing ATMs seem as simple as snapping your fingers, the film often looks like it's making fun of itself.
The only one who gets to score in this film is Prithvi. Apart from the mobile recharge coupon, that is. He holds his ground despite being cast in the title role in a film, that has put aside all semblance of logic. He looks the hi-fi robber and acts it as well.
How can it be that so many actors are simultaneously miscast in a film? Narein heads the lot, and is awkwardly clumsy when it comes to playing the flirtatious officer. All that skirt-chasing seems as ill-fitting to him as a right foot in the left shoe. He's much better towards the end though, when he turns sober. Jayasurya is well off the mark as well; he looks crisp and well toned, but rarely gets into the character apart from the twitched eyebrow and a contorted face. It's a relief that he has nothing much to do here. Bhavana is around attempting an image makeover of sorts, and what was Samvrutha doing in that cameo that was probably the most irritating since cameos were discovered?
Fake situations, stiff dialogue and an unconvincing premise make Joshey's Robinhood the Pauper of Thieves. Short of action and short of sense, it loots you of your money and time.