Thursday, March 04, 2004

Love in Nepal 

They have names like Abby, Maxi, Sandy; work in an ad agency called Madness, but that’s about as much zing as (though the language spoken in such a milieu is Hindi) as Rajat Mukherjee’s Love in Nepal musters up… even the title is so insipid!

Abby (Sonu Nigam), is the sassy creative head of Madness, and when he gets a female boss in the form of Maxi (Fllora Saini), his time is spent in either putting her down or peering down her blouse. For once a Hindi film has a corporate honcho as a character and they treat her like an airhead—her very tiny clothes being completely at variance with her starchy manner.

The shoot of a campaign takes them to Nepal, where, after taking a toss down a river, they fall in love. Abby gets drunk one night and finds himself next to the corpse of sexy Tanya (Jharna Bhattacharya), who had taken a shine to him, going so far as to do a bedroom cabaret.

Now Abby has to contend with furious Maxi, a persistent cop Prithvi Singh (Ehsaan Khan), mysterious gangsters demanding their “dus crore ka maal”, with just crazy Bunty Guide (Rajpal Yadav) and best pal Sandy (Shweta Keswani) as allies.

If the bantering between Abby and Maxi was a bit dull, at least it was bearable, the film just loses its moorings when it goes into action-adventure mode. It’s much too slow and frankly nobody gives a damn about who killed a subsidiary character and why!

The drug-dealing villains (Vijay Raaz, Ganesh Yadav and gang) are neither menacing nor funny, and the whole caper seems like much ado about nothing.

Sonu Nigam is acting skills are just about okay, he is a good dancer too, though he lacks in the screen presence department – in short he is not ‘hero material’. None of the others in the cast are particularly impressive—Rajpal Yadav uses his typical Bihari accent even when playing a Nepali, and Vijay Raza doesn’t have much of a role. Come to think of it, you don’t even see much of Nepal, despite the intermittent chopper shots.


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