Friday, April 07, 2017


Shoddy Shaadi! Don't even!

1.5 stars

Mini Review:

At the double wedding of Laddoo and Payal and a heavily pregnant Laali with Veer, Laaddoo announces that he is actually the father of Laali’s child. Chaos ensues and Veer corners Laddoo into telling us his story. The story is that of Laddoo’s greed could have been interesting had he the acting chops to pull it off, and there was real greed shown. The treatment of the subject is ham-handed and that’s why it feels like a never-ending tale that is so unfunny it is dumb.

Main Review:

Laaddoo is an ambitious young man who has no conscience when it comes to making money. He’s in love with Laali who becomes pregnant soon into their relationship. Laaddoo wants no kid in their life but when his parents get to know, they denounce him and take Laali away. The boss then discovers some fraud Laddoo was planning and kicks him out. Laddoo realises that he needs to go back to his parents but then they have Laali now. A kindly uncle suggests he do what Laali had done: go to her parents and win them over, then make an offer for Laali’s hand in marriage. A heavily pregnant Laali is now going to get married to prince (what’s with these royal weddings and Hindi movies? Each just gets worse than the one before!) who needs to marry because of some forecast. Laddoo arrives at the wedding venue with a fake fiancee, makes friends with the prince, and hopes to win over his own parents who are there as Laali’s parents.

Confused yet?

Vivaan Shah plays Laaddoo, with all the enthusiasm of a high school annual play, offering voice modulation that is more radio than on screen, but using only two expressions no matter what the situation is. He either smiles or he cries. There is nothing in between. It is very disconcerting to watch someone smile while singing a love song or indeed when planning to defraud the company you work for. If you look away from the screen, then he sounds appropriate, but otherwise, it is odd to see someone smile as he is defending himself from a bamboo stick wielding father of a girl who…

Wait a minute! If Laali has a family, who know that she’s going to be an ‘unwed’ mother, who know that she has nowhere to go, just let her go to Laaddoo’s parents? Yes, she ran away from home to escape a father who beats up the mother but she had confronted him before leaving home, no? He had not hit her…

If you get used to Laaddoo’s constant smiling, then there’s another curveball that hits you smack on the face: Laali’s vacant expression. Now don’t get me wrong. Akshara Haasan is beautiful with her mother Saarika’s hazel eyes… But she truly, truly lacks any sort of expression. Even when there are tears running down her face, the rest of her face is blank. She smiles, but her eyes are vacant.

With the lead pair being disastrous to watch, you fervently wish the rest of the cast will help pull the convoluted story through. There’s Saurabh Shukla and Darshan Jariwala, Suhasini Mulay, Gurmeet Choudhary (famous after hit TV shows like Ramayan and Geet - Huyi Sabse Parayi)  and even Sanjay Mishra. But when you see Suhasini Mulay slap Sanjay Mishra each time they meet, you wonder what the filmmakers are thinking. Saurabh Shukla is shown to be a lush, a bottle of dubious liquor in his hand. Not funny. Darshan Jariwala is meant to be uptight so he shows his disapproval by turning away physically in a huff. Watching them all interact with each other, is pure torture. And since it’s a wedding at a castle (Gurmeet is the prince), everyone is dressed in bling.

Of course you have inadvertent hilarity. Those moments keep you going. The funniest one: The prince has a horse called Stallion. Not kidding. And he says that, ‘Stallion is my one truly loving companion!’


(this review appears on nowrunning dot com)

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