Jamnaprasad (Kunal Kemmu), son of Gangaprasad (Piyush Mishra) and Saraswati (Alka Amin) and husband of Madhuri (Shweta Tripathi Sharma), is the miserly sort who skimps on the essentials and even stubs out agarbattis after he has paid his respects to his gods. Might he merely be frugal, this forward-thinking opponent of wasteful consumption? Writer-director Vipul Meha’s Kanjoos Makhichoos, which is out on ZEE5, is happy to be confused.

A financial opportunity beckons Jamnaprasad when his parents are declared missing during a pilgrimage to Uttarakhand. The officers in charge of sanctioning compensation, Chaturvedi (Rajiv Gupta) and Yadav (Raju Srivastava), demand and are given bribes to release the amount due to Jamnaprasad.

The title is misleading; the comedy broad and occasionally funny; the acting suitably hammy. After shedding its pretence of being a study of parsimony, the film slides into a conventional examination of Jamnaprasad’s transformation from penny-pincher to scam-buster. Sharp performances from the main actors – especially from Kunal Kemmu, who plays loud with subtlety – and a screenplay content with extracting cheap thrills from a non-situation, the film lurches from one slapstick situation to the next.

Kanjoos Makhichoos (2023).