For a remake, comparisons with the source are inevitable. The better the original is remembered and loved, the harder it is for the remake to come off well against it.
An Idiot For Dinner is at the end of a chain of remakes – a French play called Le Dîner de cons (The Dinner Game) was adapted into a French movie. Sagar Ballary took "inspiration" from there to make Bheja Fry. Then came Evam’s play An Idiot For Dinner.
Bheja Fry was most enjoyable for me. I had watched it without biases, unaware of the French original.
Not so, unfortunately, with An Idiot For Dinner.
I could not detach my mind from similar dialogues in Bheja Fry, or how Rajat Kapoor had acted in a particular moment. Thankfully, this was not a copy-paste remake. The same storyline, but fleshed out a little differently. (e.g. While Bharat Bhushan in Bheja Fry was a singer, R. Golden Gopu in this play makes matchstick models.) This lends some freshness to the otherwise familiar plot.
The acting was patchy. R.Golden Gopu (Sarvesh Sridhar) and the tax inspector (Iswar Srikumar) were very good, Sanjay (Praveen Bharadwaj) didn’t quite cut it. When he sprained his back, he didn’t really seem to be in pain. Sanjay’s friend Sameer (Gibran Osman) looked nervous when he made an entry. He got better gradually but didn’t pull off the tougher scenes, like one where he had to enact a giggling fit.
My less-than-effusive opinion of An Idiot For Dinner is not that of the majority, I guess. The rest of the audience was roaring with laughter. If you haven’t watched Bheja Fry too many times, you might enjoy this one.