Patiala House: A perfect dish with all ingredients in the right measure. Anushka's bubbly character, Punjabi background, our original bobby couple Rishi and Dimple, the omnipresent Indian Shaadi and cricket. The film essentially debates the eternal Indian subject whether to put our dreams/wishes on the back burner for what tradition/parents demand or go against them to find success and happiness in pursuing our dreams.
Gurtej Singh Kahlon (Rishi Kapoor) lives with his wife (Dimple) and young family in Southhall, London. He witnesses his family being attacked by British-born Caucasian skinheads, leading to the death of a senior citizen Mr. Saini (Prem Chopra). When he tries to fight back and retaliate he is arrested by the British police. His wife even chops off her son’s hair so that he cannot be singled out as a Sikh Indian. Gurtej then swears to change the manner in which East Indians were profiled and set about to build a Mini-India in Southall. He encourages his son Parghat Singh Kahlon alias Gattu (Usmaan Qureshi) to play cricket, as he himself was a great fan of Lala Amarnath, but when Gattu excels in cricket and is on the threshold of England Cricket team selection, Gurtej prevents his son from playing for England despite silent pleas from both mother and son. Gattu silently packs his cricket kit, runs a convenient store in Southhall and practices his fast bowling in the middle of the night, secretly being watched by Mr. Bedi (Tinnu Anand) one of the members of the selection committee.
Time passes by as Gattu matures from a 17 year old tear away fast bowler to a mature 33 year old obedient son of his family as Gurtej continues to take all the important decisions in the family with an iron hand, starting from the marriage decisions to the career growth of all the sons, daughters, nephews, nieces etc. So a prospective DJ singer Komal Chatwal (Hard Kaur) becomes a Bhajan singer at family gatherings, a prospective chef becomes a cabbie driver and so on.
Then mixed-raced Simran Chaggal enters Parghat's life, and with some help from the Kahlon family and Mr. Bedi, gets him to be included in a failing English team. They conspire to keep this information from Gurtej, and even re-name Parghat as 'Kaali'. But it will not be long before Gurtej finds out, collapses, is hospitalized, refuses to have to do anything with his son, and even refers to him as 'Angrez Chamcha'. Shameful of having hurt his father, and no one in the family to back him up, Parghat has no option but to publicly announce his 'retirement' from cricket. What follows next is the way the family unites with Parghat and opposes Gurtej in unison.
The supporting cast of Armaan Kirmaani who plays Akshay’s brother, Devensh Daswani who plays Anusha’s adopted younger brother are excellent. Dimple does not have much role to play, but she excels in her confrontation scenes with Rishi Kapoor. Couple of songs including Rola Pe Gaya have been chartbusters and picturized well.
Nikhil excellently showcases his editing skills well. Then there are fleeting appearances from the original cricket players like John Emburey, Nazir Hussain, Gooch and Gower from the board rooms to Symonds, Pollard, Shaun Tait, Kamran Akmal and Dirk Nannes in the cricket field. Overall a well packaged film with a very restrained performance from Akshay Kumar a refreshing change from his previous two duds, Action Replayy and Tees Maar Khan.