Thursday, April 27, 2006

Pyare Mohan: Review

Vivek Oberoi and Fardeen Khan starrer Pyare Mohan lacks the punch of a comedy film.

Directed by Indra Kumar, the movie stars Fardeen Khan , Vivek Oberoi , Esha Deol , Amrita Rao and Boman Irani .

Given the movie’s basic story idea, ‘Pyare Mohan’ could have been an interesting flick. Two friends – one blind and the other deaf – go about their lives with fun and masti without letting their handicap become a weakness. They also fall in love and later on fight the bad guys to save their sweethearts.

Pyare (Fardeen Khan) is blind as a bat. Day or night, light or darkness makes no difference to him. He goes on morning walks, reads the newspaper upside down and can sense a man’s intention despite his inability to see.

Mohan (Vivek Oberoi) needs just an excuse to break into dance at the slightest opportunity. He is deaf and can’t hear a damn thing, but he shakes his leg to the music, be it a marriage ceremony or (mistakenly) a funeral procession.

Together, Pyare and Mohan are inseparable friends running an Archies shop. But there is something lacking in their lives. It is love.

Cupid strikes when the two meet Priya (Amrita Rao) and Preeti (Esha Deol) during a morning walk. While Pyare is smitten with Preeti, Mohan loses his heart to Priya.

Preeti and Priya perform at musical shows. Their friendship with Pyare and Mohan cements after the two heroes help them during a concert.

But when Pyare and Mohan express their love to Preeti and Priya, their proposal is turned down. Preeti and Priya admit that they have always seen Pyare and Mohan as good friends but they don’t have any romantic feelings for them. Pyare and Mohan are shattered.

Post interval, the two girls get into trouble in Bangkok where they are arrested for a murder. Not only this, an underworld don Tony (Boman Irani) wants to kill them.

In this hour of need, Preeti and Priya’s dear ones turn their back to them. Only the blind Pyare and the deaf Mohan, whose love the two belles had rebuked earlier, come to their rescue. What follows is a cat-and-mouse game in which our blind and deaf heroes excel over the baddies.

Indra Kumar , the movie’s director, showed an incredible command over comedy in his movie Masti two years ago. But he disappoints in ‘Pyare Mohan’. Barring a few sequences, the humour in ‘Pyare Mohan’ is pretty mundane.

Vivek Oberoi does evoke a few chuckles in some scenes. His very opening scene, when he is dancing in a marriage and unknowingly starts dancing in front of a funeral along side, is funny. Also the look he wears throughout the movie, reading the lips of people speaking to him, gives his character a hilarious touch.

Fardeen Khan looks handsome, but doesn’t impress in comedy. There are certain scenes in which his expressions are plain wooden.

Esha Deol and Amrita Rao react more than act in the movie. Boman Irani is just about ok, playing a stuttering don, who claims his victims with a baseball bat.

To sum it up, ‘Pyare Mohan’ had the potential to be an entertaining comedy. But the writers have not been able to do justice to the script. The humour in the movie is obviously predictable and absurdly puerile.

By Nikhil Kumar


Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Humko Deeawana Kar Gaye

Save for the simmering chemistry between Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif, ‘Humko Deewana Kar Gaye’ has little else engaging to offer.

Filmmaker Raj Kanwar’s previous movies have bore an indubitable stamp of melodrama and romantic mush. HDKG is no exception. Riddled with by-now-obvious clichés, HDKG tells a tale of romance that keeps simmering between the two protagonists, but finds an expression only after a good number of reels have unspooled. It is about attraction and repulsion, about love and its denial. The end has the predictable union of the lovers, but not before the mandatory tear-jerking moments, punctuated by some over-the-top drama.

The movie tells the story of Aditya (Akshay Kumar) and Jia (Katrina Kaif).

Aditya is an automobile engineer already engaged to Sonia (Bipasha Basu), a fashion designer. But the two hardly look made for each other. For Sonia, her career comes first. She is a hot looking woman with a cold heart. She is put off by crying babies and doesn’t like simple romantic gestures that ought to be natural between any two lovers.

Likewise, Jia is also about to marry Karan (Anil Kapoor), a business magnate. Although Jia has had all the material comforts of life – thanks to her rich business-minded father – but she has never experienced family love. Now she is about to marry a man who thinks very much like her father.

Aditya and Jia meet in Canada. Aditya is there for business reasons while Jia is there to shop for her wedding.

What begins as a series of brief encounters between Aditya and Jia starts cementing into something serious. Aditya introduces Jia to his sister’s family in Canada. It is there Jia finds the familial love that she always longed for.

Just when the simmering love between Aditya and Jia is about to explode, the director introduces the element of misunderstanding between the two. The inevitable parting follows and the lovers drift apart never to meet again.

But fate – yes, the mighty queer thing that plays more important role in films than in real life – intervenes. The lovers meet again. The lovebirds go through the obvious emotional turbulence before they eventually become the ones of the same feather.

Well, HDKG has a few positives to its credit. Firstly, the movie is visually striking. The cinematography is topnotch and adds a considerable sheen to the movie paled by the absence of a gripping story. And there indeed are certain moments in the movie that strike a chord at heart, (Akki-Katrina sequences in the first half), but the second half keeps stretching endlessly towards the end.

The songs, that keep popping up after every few reels, only frizzle a viewer.

Raj Kanwar has apparently taken a lot of inspiration from Hollywood movies. There are certain sequences that look lifted from Hollywood flicks. Sample this – the introduction of Anil Kapoor before the interval when he mistakes Akshay as the room service guy and gives him a tip, bears a non-coincidental resemblance to a similar scene from Hugh Grant-Julia Roberts starrer ‘Notting Hill’. And there are similar noticeable lifts from movies like ‘Forces of Nature’ and ‘Titanic’.

Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif are the only saviors of this movie. Playing a suave and decorous man with a mellow heart, Akshay deftly conveys the intensity of the inner contradictions of his character at several places in the movie.

Katrina Kaif is getting better with every film. She is less wooden and more expressive in emotional scenes. Her natural beauty is beyond question and her styling in the film is just breathtaking. Full points to her on looks, her acting still leaves certain things to be desired. But she is coming around.

Bipasha Basu and Anil Kapoor carry their roles with ease and élan. Bhagyashree as Akshay’s sister gives an adequate performance.

In a nutshell, HDKG is good enough to while away your time. But it offers nothing exceptional.



Saturday, April 15, 2006

Shaadi se Pehle - Not Much Fun

Hearty laughs are only few and far between in this pre-marital, romantic comedy directed by Satish Kaushik.

Undoubtedly, the storyline and the basic plot of ‘Shaadi Se Pehle’ is quite interesting, although not original. The movie seems inspired from Amol Palekar’s 1979 movie ‘Meri Biwi Ki Shaadi’.

To put it simply, the movie tells the story of a man who mistakenly believes that his living days are numbered and therefore he tries to make his girlfriend hate him so that she can settle down with someone else without having to go through the pain of his death.

A story like this provides ample scope for hilarity and wit. But what ‘Shaadi Se Pehle’ serves is a series of clichéd situations marked mostly by average, non-functional humour. There are indeed some funny moments in the movie, but they are outweighed by overtly deliberate attempts to make the audience laugh.

Akshaye Khanna plays Aashish, a poor man in love with a rich girl Rani (Ayesha Takia). Aashish suffers from hypertension. Any situation of slightest tension leaves him with frayed nerves. Aashish’s love for Rani is not approved by her parents who think he is far beneath their daughter to match her as a husband.

The story begins to roll when Aashish mistakenly starts believing that he has cancer after overhearing his doctor’s conversation on the phone.

Suddenly the hypochondriac in Aashish comes to the fore. Resigning himself to his fate, Aashish decides he would not let Rani bereave over his death. He loves her too much to bring her any kind of pain.

So he decides that he will make her hate him. And for this he begins to flirt with Sania (Mallika Sherawat).

Sania is an uninhibited girl who is all over Aashish at the slightest provocation. She is also the doted one of her elder brother Anna (Sunil Shetty), a belligerent goon who can’t bear to see any wish of his sister unfulfilled.

Aashish’s gameplan works and Rani begins to hate him. She agrees to marriage with Rohit (Aftab Shivdasani), Aashish’s friend who has always harbored a crush for Rani.

Just in the nick of time before Rani’s engagement, Aashish comes to know that he doesn’t suffer from cancer. Now he has to undo what he has done.

Will he be able to get out of the mess he has created for himself? Will Sania, who has now grown strong affection for Aashish, let him go?

On paper, ‘Shaadi Se Pehle’ sounds like one potential roller coaster. But on celluloid, it turns out to be nothing more than just an average entertainer. This owing particularly to the movie’s script that is riddled with hackneyed humour. The movie’s dialogues lack the witty punch and freshness. Even the songs (by Himesh Reshammiya), save for a few, fail to keep the proceedings engaging.

The few funny situations in the movie inevitably involve Akshaye Khanna – be it his interaction with Rani’s parents, or his confiding to his friend (Rajpal Yadav) about his illness, or his scenes with his doctor, Boman Irani. Akshaye definitely shows a flair for humour. Alas, had he had a script hilarious enough.

Ayesha Takia plays a textbook goody-goody girlfriend of the hero. She merely ends up looking bubbly and shows a bit of histrionic in the second half.

Mallika Sherawat does what she is good at. She sizzles, shows her skin and keeps drooling on the hero.

Aftab Shivdasani stays mostly on the sidelines. Sunil Shetty and Boman Irani hardly make any impact, while Rajpal Yadav is irritating at times.

To sum it up, ‘Shaadi Se Pehle’ is just a timepass entertainer.

By Aparajita Ghosh
Film critic, ApunKaChoice.Com


Monday, April 03, 2006

Chaand Ke Paaar Chalo

Once again, the tried and tested stuff forms the base of a film. The story of CHAAND KE PAAR CHALO is as old as the hills. From GUIDE to JAB JAB PHOOL KHILE to RAJA HINDUSTANI, the fascination for these stories has never ended.

CHAAND KE PAAR CHALO, directed by Mustafa Engineer, follows a similar path. Besides, there's nothing novel in its execution either.

CHAAND KE PAAR CHALO revolves around Chander [Saahib], a tourist photographer in Nainital, who stays with his parents [Alok Nath, Kanu Gill] and best friend, Johnny [Sanjay Narvekar]. While on his way to work one day, he hears a melodious voice. He is mesmerized by the beauty of Nirmala [Preeti Jhangiani], the stage dancer who has arrived with her uncle [Tej Sapru] and aunt [Himani Shivpuri]. He clicks her photos and later befriends her.

Chander always tells her of taking her across the moon and she in turn laughs at his tales. One day, Chander sells his studio and takes Nirmala 'across the moon and stars', to the city of dreams -- Mumbai. And from there her journey to stardom begins. She is renamed Garima.

Chander sells his camera and land in Nainital to raise funds. Deepak introduces Garima to a film director Arman Khan, who signs her in the lead role for his film. Now Garima has everything -- money, fame, name. Her secretary Kapoor [Shakti Kapoor] cannot stand Chander and finds ways to remove him from the path.

He succeeds finally and throws Chander out of Garima's house. Chander's friend advises him to return to Nainital. On returning, Chander learns of his father's demise and also that his mother is staying with his friend Johnny. Johnny advises Chander to start life afresh and returns back his camera.

Chander returns to his old job -- tourist photography. He happens to see Garima where he had seen her first. Garima follows Chander and tries to talk to him. He asks him to return back. She finally wins Chander back.

CHAAND KE PAAR CHALO is one of those routine films that has nothing new to say. Everything is so predictable. It looks like a film straight out of the 1980s, when such stories worked. Direction [Mustafa Engineer] has its limitations. Music [Vishnu Narayan] is quite pleasant.

Saahib looks his part, but needs to polish his skills as an actor. Preeti Jhanginani is perfect, looking pretty and acting with conviction. Sanjay Narwekar, Alok Nath, Razzaq Khan and Shakti Kapoor are as usual.

On the whole, CHAAND KE PAAR CHALO will go unnoticed.

Rating :- *

By Taran Adarsh in