Friday, June 05, 2015

Review: Dil Dhadakne Do

No Affair To Remember This Honeymoon Travels Milega Dobara

2 stars

Mini Review:

Ranveer Singh brings alive this predictable tale of a formulaic dysfunctional family. The story is boring and the pace is so slow it gives you all the time in the world to add characters from other movies just to stay awake. Then they add a talking dog to tell you how to feel. That's not cute. It's plain insulting.

Main Review:

Indian audiences are watching Queen, and Highway, and Piku, Dum Laga Ke Haisha, Tanu Weds Manu Returns and even the formulaic but awesome fun movie called Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhaniya. Why should we be subjected to a terrible stereotypical dysfunctional family tale?

Daddy-o is rich, plays golf with fawning friends, makes frequent business trips because he cannot keep his pants on.

(So boring yaar, bet a hundred that by the end of the movie, he will say, 'Mujhe maaf kar do!' to his pativrata, long suffering wife!)

Mommy san puts up with the affairs because she spends time lunching with the ladies. When insulted by her husband, she even eats chocolate as if she were in a Cadbury's Silk ad.

(That's so boringly old, darling! These days rich married women in her situation do yoga, and do yoga instructors, fly off to fat farms even... This was so Saheb Biwi Ghulaam 'gehne banwaao, gehne tudwaao!') 

Lunching ladies make snide remarks about Daddy-o and mommy san. Their expressions are straight out of TV saas bahu dramas.

(Don't even try to make excuses for their obvious nudge-nudge, wink-wink expressions!)

The husbands of lunching ladies are rich businessmen, but predictable too: large jolly ones who speak 'desi' English, dour rich ones who scowl at everything...

Daddy-o treats his brother (who works for him) very badly, is publicly rude to his wife, is rude to his daughter, his son... Everybody puts up with this boorishness because he has a factory that makes tiffin boxes!

I stopped caring here. Pink tiffin boxes did not have the right 'finish' unless daddy-o inspected them? And they were making deals with a row of Sri Lankans and arguing about the falling rupee? How many tiffin boxes were they making? No wonder son did not want his daddy's business. 

(There's nothing path-breaking there either!)

Ranveer Singh, plays the son whose problem is, 'Daddy is selling our airplane!'

But he deals with these rich dude problems with so much fun, you want to hug him even though he defaced that plane by scratching his name on the fuselage. No Delhi lad would deface his Ferrari, then why would daddy-o's darling son?

Daughter is married off to a rich expressionless dude who probably became that way because his mommy is a hypochondriac. Melman from Madagascar movies does a better job than she does.   

She is hurt and angry because daddy-o and mommy san did not put her name on the invite to the anniversary cruise the whole lot is about to embark upon.

The audience is also hurt and angry because a talking dog has been telling you this story because you are incapable of understanding these apparently never been seen before dysfunctional family problems! 

(Where is Crocodile Dundee when you need him? He would have silenced the dog that makes you think you are in a never-ending Satyamev Jayate episode about how to be good humans!)  

And why did they think the audience will accept a lecture from something that does not even know how to wipe that drool off their own face? Main Prem Ki Diwani Hoon had the ghastly talking parakeet and assorted animals, and everyone hated it. Why do they think this will be less awful?

But I loved Ranveer Singh who makes a Superhuman effort to keep this boatload of predictable stuff afloat. Every time he appears on the screen you are swept away by his infectious energy. That's why this movie receives it's one star.

The second star is because I discovered religion in this movie. I have never prayed so hard for Steven Segal to appear from the kitchens of this cruise ship and rescue me from this boat Under Seige of the predictable stuff about uncles and aunties using their kids as marriage bait and business deals... I also prayed for Ranbir Kapoor from Bombay Velvet to appear and use the rest of the bullets in his Tommy guns on the characters here.

When you see a great cast like Anil Kapoor who plays daddy-o, wasted, made to mouth trite dialog about 'beti ki jagah uske husband ke saath hai' you hope that there will be at least one moment where he might say, 'Jhakaas!' or just dance the Ram Lakhan dance when they do the choreographed number...

Shefali Shah is a wonderful actor and her saucer eyes can emote all the hurt in the world. Why on Earth is she made to be such a doormat? My heart went out to her when she was eating Chocolate the way stereotypical hurt women are meant to... Didn't the chocolate get into her long manicured nails? Whatever happened to eating ice cream from the tub while watching Colin Firth? Or Daniel Craig emerge practically nude from the sea? The lack of imagination in creating these characters is astounding!

Priyanka Chopra with Ranveer Singh is brilliant, but otherwise she's just a pancake makeup laden doll. In fact everyone glistens with the tonnes of make up on them. Except Ranveer Singh. He is just amazing. With clothes and without. 

An analytical friend has a theory about film directors: They will make the same movie again and again if the first one clicks. Here too, alas, we are offered a hotch potch of Honeymoon Travels and Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara. We are taken with typical characters (they think quirky) to Turkey and Greece (mostly Turkey, because there are no stock shots of actors at the Parthenon here)... The whole exercise of taking them to these exotic locations is pointless when they could have had the the trite dialog they speak at the Blue Mosque very easily in the wedding setting of Yeh Jawani Hai Diwani. 

(How I yearned for Liam Neeson to show up and say, 'Can you see the white smoke from a chimney? I'm down there!' when the mandatory rooftop in Morocco scene appears in the film! How I wanted him to show up with a bloodied and bruised villain from Taken 2 at the Hammam where the women get to say even more trite things about how having babies will make everything okay...) 

The medical room in the cruise ship is a scene that shows us what the film could have been. But the talking dog appears again, and you begin to feel murderous.

The film descends into an Odessa Steps carnage from Battleship Potemkin shot by Priyadarshan and you look like this: 

There is no Richard Parker who will appear from underneath the tarp and eat up the Mehras from a very very trite, 'Hum Saath Saath Hain' ending.

The multiplexes should offer puke bags for the audiences who get seasick by all that predictability and waste of a 170 minutes of their lives. Go watch Mad Max or Piku once again. This shipboard affair is best forgotten. 

P.S. Ranveer, it was awesome heroic of you to jump off the cruise ship to chase after lady love. Next time, call her on her cell phone. Or stalk her on her FB page like normal people. Better yet, fly your daddy's plane into London... Until then I am going to put some salve on my forehead from the stings after all that facepalming...

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