FOUR SAMOSAS (2022)


Greetings again from the darkness. It’s been three years since the breakup with his girlfriend Rina, and Vin is still a lost pup. Writer-director Ravi Kapoor opens his film by showing us the grocery store heist and escape of four people in disguise. He then flashes back to explain what happened … as if the explanation makes things rational.

Can one be an aspiring rapper if they never actually rap? If so, then “Big Boy” Vin (Venk Patula) is an aspiring rapper … well, more like a wistful rapper … still lovesick over the breakup with Rina (Summer Bishil), whose dad (Tony Mirrcandani) owns the grocery store, Juneja’s, that is the target of the heist in the opening scene. Vin is a sorry sari salesman, and when he finds out that Rina is engaged to Sanjay (Karan Soni, recognizable from many roles, including DEADPOOL), he decides to steal the “dirty” diamonds being held in the safe to cover Rina’s wedding.

Vin forms a crew consisting of his best friend Zak (Nirvan Patnaik), described as a Bollywood dreamer; Anjali (Sharmita Bhattacharya), the editor and only writer at “The Great Little India Times”, and described as either an over-underachiever or under-overachiever (I forget which); and Paru (Sonal Shah), a malcontent IT engineer awaiting her green card. Vin convinces each of them to join by appealing to their specific situation, and by terming this a reappropriation of wealth. The story takes place in Artesia, known as “Little India” outside Los Angeles. We even meet Vin’s mother and father (played by the director).

To ensure that we are never lost, director Kapoor inserts frequent title cards with such helpful detail as “Pre-Heist”, “The Heist”, and “Post Heist”. Most of the story focuses on Vin, but it’s actually Ms. Bhattacharya who steals her scene as Anjali. She concocts elaborate plans that are way more complicated than necessary, and these are acted out in humorous fashion by the cast. It’s a quirky comedy with oddball characters poking fun at their own culture, and it’s clear they are all having fun in this deep cut indie. It’s a story of love and friendship (loosely) disguised as a heist-comedy, and we are even told it’s, “A story about love” and “A story about finding a crew.” The comedy has similarities to the old Keystone Cops, and the casual characters are likable enough.

Opening in theaters and On Demand on December 2, 2022

WATCH THE TRAILER

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