Sunday, August 17, 2008

"Bachna Ae Haseeno"

This is some movie review!!!!!!

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My thoughts on Bachna Ae Haseeno

Posted: 16 Aug 2008 03:21 AM CDT

Warning: This is not a review.

When you walk in to a Yash Raj Films movie, you're expecting three hours of street-smart humour threaded into an unconvincing plot with fabricated drama. Bachna, for the record, gives you all three.

At any rate, this might just be a one time watch, not because it's watchable, but probably because God Tussi Great Ho is utterly horrible. Ranbir does well, except when he tries to emote, which, incidentally, applies to atleast two of the women as well. The story goes thus: Raj (Ranbir) first meets Mahi (Minnisha Lamba) in Switzerland, who is so smitten by DDLJ that the very title track playing in the background brights up her eyes and makes her run towards the source of the melody. She misses her family and the train, he jumps off it, walks up to her and they ride, through the scenic locales of Switzerland, to Zurich where Mahi's family wait for her anxiously. On the way, they fall in love with a song thrown in, only to realize that Mahi is engaged. A goodbye-kiss at the airport later, Raj reveals his true intent: he has little long-term interest in Mahi anyway. And heart number one, a cute little punjabi one dripping in DDLJ, crashes.

Fast-forward to Bombay, where Raj is now working for Microsoft, X-Box Halo 3 to be precise, and is in a live-in relationship with Radhika (Bips). Only just that he *thinks* it's a live-in, and he *thinks* she's that modern-type-ki-ladki, the stereotype model, who doesn't believe in marriage, who puts her career ahead and whatnot. As a result, you can feel for Ranbir who, like the audience, is surprised when Radhika, after hanging out in all those shorts that define 'short', says she wants to marry him: red-saree et-all. But where is Raj? Oh, a timely Microsoft transfer to Australia, mate.

And what there? After hanging out with — and being thrown out by — a number of 'firang' girls that he himself can't keep a track of, Raj meets Gayatri (Deepika Padukone), who isn't as feminine as Raj is perhaps used to. She drives a cab, makes secret notes of stock tips as she overhears them, works at a retail store and studies for her MBA. The independent expat girl in Oz, and what's more, she's likable enough for Raj to actually fall in love with her. He fetches a few hundred candles, and at a fountain, goes down on his knees and proposes. But Gayatri, minutes before the interval, says she doesn't believe in marriage, that it's not economically practical, and a host of other stuff that make you go - 'hey, she really makes sense - now is this really a YRF movie'?

The joy, unfortunately, is short lived, for it really *is* a Yash Raj film. Because our hero, God bless his golden soul of pure intent, decides to go back to girl 1 and 2 and apologize to them. Which he does, obviously, and why wouldn't he, armed with a name and dancing steps like the 'real' Raj we know. The second half is as predictable as a sunset, except that watching it doesn't give you the same kind of pleasure.

Ranbir is good, he can dance, he can walk the talk and while he does look clumsy at times, that's just another added dimension to his character. Minnisha Lamba has an infectious smile, but she really could work on her dialogues. Bips plays the smart, seductive and the arrogant bitchy heroine rather well. Deepika is also a treat to watch, and she sounds very Bangalorean when she speaks English, dripping wet in the Mount Carmel accent when she goes 'dood' for dude, and for her second flick does quite well. But the film-makers really need to give her better names: from Shantipriya to Sandy to Gayatri. Right.

Director Siddharth Anand, unfortunately, has gone downhill since Salaam Namaste. That movie worked because the characters were all so likable, and the inimitable Javed Jaffrey thrown in. Ta Ra Rum Pum bombed, and rightly so, although there was a bit of a storyline in it. Bachna, however, is really extended. It's too long, or it feels that way, with a number of unnecessary songs pushed in.

Incidentally, there's another way of looking at Bachna Ae Haseeno: an extended commercial for Microsoft X-Box Halo 3. Last I recall, Microsoft Australia didn't pay its game-developers enough to rent a classy apartment in a prime location in Sydney *and* Porsche SUVs. And they surely don't grant a six-month vacation for their lead developer to go back and apologize to two of his ex-girlfriends. And there really aren't tuxedos and overly sophisticated people at a Microsoft product launch party. Nope — I'll tell you what happens at a Microsoft launch party: the software crashes.

And while we're at it, Yash Raj and co. have to stop borrowing from their old films. They've borrowed the music from Dhoom, from Jhoom Barabar Jhoom, and possibly the same fashion-sense of JBJ as well which is, to put it mildly, questionable. In fact, throughout Bachna Ae Haseeno, there is this serious DDLJ hang-over ('Raj', the title track playing in the background, Switzerland, the train, and I could just go on). Now, DDLJ is a classic, and I bow to thee.

Bachna, unfortunately, is far from it.

[RJ] Posted from


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