Friday, January 28, 2011

Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji 

Must be Kiddin’

It was, perhaps a mistake to push Madhur Bhandarkar’s Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji as a comedy. Because then you go to the cinema expecting laughs and get a poor man’s version of Dil Chahta Hai, without the wit.

Madhur Bhandarkar has made a reputation for himself, making films exposing various strata of society, maybe he could have slotted this one as Mumbai-based Sex And The City for men, but then the characters would have to be more identifiable and definitely better fleshed out.

The three men here are divorced bank manager Naren (Ajay Devgn) besotted by a chirpy intern (Shazahn Padamsee), Abhay (Emraam Hashmi) a fitness trainer and unashamed gigolo who plans to exploit a rich woman (Tisca Chopra) and her step-daughter (Shruti Haasan), and geeky poet Milind (Omi Vaidya) looking for true love and getting a one-sided romance with a selfish radio jockey (Shraddha Das). 

Without going into details, all get their hearts broken and repaired rather painlessly too.  The film, had it not pretended to be a comedy, could gave taken a satirical look at the lives or urban professionals, who have rejected family ties (none of the guys has parents or siblings in sight), but without creating and alternative system that works.  What is interesting and maybe annoying for its misogyny, is that all the women in the film are either manipulative or dumb.

Only Emraan Hashmi struts through the film comfortably, since he has done this kind of loutish character dozens of times before.  Ajay Devgn looks out of his depth and Omi Vaidya overacts. Of the ladies,  Tisca Chopra brings to her thankless role a kind of poise, while Shruti Haasan contributes some cool quotient to a film that has hardly any redeeming feature otherwise—and certainly no laughs.


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