About the story: The ambitious but up till now unsuccessful rock musician Veer Kapur (Fardeen Khan) is moneywise depending on his millionaire step-brother, the NRI Dharam Kapur (Sanjay Dutt) who every month provides him with a lavish pocket money – not least because Veer lied to him that he is happily married to his girlfriend Vidya (Mugdha Godse). This was the idea of Veer's inventive friend Prem Chopra (Ajay Devgn), and Veer thanks him by sharing his pocket money with him. Thus Prem is able to construct a fulminant racing car, but after an illegal car race Prem and Veer find themselves up to their ears in debt with the mafia boss Tobu (Johny Lever). In their need they even rent out Veer's home, which is Dharam's villa in Goa, to the eccentric "RGV" (Sanjay Mishra). Just in this moment Dharam arrives for an unplanned visit in Goa for the purpose of finally meeting his sister-in-law Vidya. Accidentally he mistakes Prem's wife Janvi (Bipasha Basu) for Vidya and thus prompts a run of misconceptions and confusion...
In the opening credits, it says "Based on the play by Neil and Caroline Schaffner as published by Samuel French, Inc.", referring to the play "Right Bed Wrong Husband" from 1921. Producer Ajay Devgn thus hedged against plagiarism accusations which connected the ATB script with Paritosh Painter's and Balwinder Singh Suri's play "Uncle Samjha Karo" which was staged in Mumbai in November 2003 and which in turn is the Hindi version of Dinyar Contractor's English play "Whose Wife Is It Anyway?" which had been staged more than ten years before. As I don't know any of these three plays I cannot judge about the inspirations' actual origin and extent, but fact is: The film clearly shows that it's based on a solid stage play and not just on the phantasies of Indian script writers which too often lack a stringent dramaturgy.
So this is brownie point number one. Number two is the cast where director Rohit Shetty had made some really lucky pulls. Okay, in the minor parts you have to deal with almost the entire brigade of Hindi film comedians, from Johny Lever (who luckily is mute almost the whole time and scores with his eyes and mimics) to Asrani and from Sanjay Mishra and Mukesh Tiwari to the hilarious Ashwini Kalsekar as house maid Mary. But for the leads Shetty could cast not only his producer Ajay Devgn but also Sanjay Dutt and Bipasha Basu, and along with them Fardeen Khan and Mugdha Godse, both acting solid and always good for some laughs. Bipasha is the pillar of calmness amidst all the chaos, and hers are some of the most emotional moments which this comedy, thank God, also provides ("Kyon").
The film's heart and soul, however, are Tom and Jerry... sorry, I mean Sanjay and Ajay, and it's not just because of the story itself but also because of these two actors that the film only gets going from minute 37 on when Sanjay enters the scene. Both are gifted comedians, their mimic, interaction and timing are mindblowing, and it's sheer delight to watch them squabbling, pulling each other's leg and feeding each other lines with instinctive certainty. Alone their nocturnal Dostana scene (with Sanjay in a pink nightgown) is worth the whole movie. (Please open this link only if you don't mind a spoiler.)
Considering this, you can even condone weaknesses like the far too great chaos in the film's second half and the only half-baked climax. All The Best is (literally) colourful entertainment with a rocking soundtrack; scenes with way too loud and annoying humour are compensated with really touching emotional moments; and Sanjay's fans absolutely get their money's worth – not just because the Kapurs' villa in Goa is full of magnificent photos of the Deadly Dutt. Sanjay obviously had a ball doing ATB, is refreshingly funny, dances full of verve, flaunts extensively the tattoos on his shoulders and arms and rocks at the drums and with the guitar like the true rock star he, simply put, is. What more can you desire? The Sabse Favorite Comic Actor Male Award 2010 (alongside with other nominations at the Stardust and IIFA Awards) was absolutely deserved for Sanju.
Produced by Ajay Devgn; Directed by Rohit Shetty
140 Min.; DVD: Shree International/ADF/Kinesis Films, English Subtitles (including songs)
All you wanted to know about All The Best / Dharam Kapur