Saturday, July 12, 2014

Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania  

Original Fake

In Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania, the leading lady is obsessed with getting a designer lehenga for her wedding. She goes to a shop where is shown a Manish Malhotra design for a fraction of the price. It’s “100% original fake,” says the saleman.

This sort of describes Shashank Khaitan’s film, a tribute to Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, with some cosmetic changes.  The two characters live in North India, not London; the girl’s father (Ashutosh Rana instead of  the late Amrish Puri) wants Kavya (Alia Bhatt) to go for an arranged marriage to an NRI she has never met, instead of a groom from a Punjab village. The boy, Rakesh aka Humpty (Varun Dhawan) is a cheerful duffer on the lines of Raj in DDLJ.
It’s been nearly 20 years and not much has changed. Kavya is “modern” only to the extent that the self-proclaimed “pataka” from Ambala drinks more and faster that the boys and hops into bed with Humpty after one kiss. No talk of education, career, personal goals, or even a wish to see the world, like Simran from DDLJ.  Her older sister (Mahnaz Damania) got divorced after a love marriage, and this has not been forgotten or forgiven.

Kavya helps Humpty to cheat and pass his exams, and in turn he offers to get her lehenga and also to help her friend, who is in trouble with her nasty boyfriend. Humpty, who is  “Vidya Book Centre ka iklauta waris” is first seen emerging from the toilet with a girl, but we are supposed to see him as a “achha ladka.”  This is considered modern for a guy.

After the usual song and dance, with Humpty’s sidekicks Shonty and Poplu always in tow, they fall in love.  Humpty lands up in Ambala, and is beaten up. But Kavya’s father is not a monster—he gives Humpty five days to prove that the NRI, Angad (Sidharth Shukla) is not worthy of Kavya. Angad proves to be Mr Perfect, a “designer dulha” as Kavya calls him, but she still sees a better future with Humpty and, really, it would be tough to see why.

In spite of being a low rent DDLJ, this film is light and breezy, and will probably be enjoyed by teens as a no-brainer date movie. More so, because Alia Bhatt and Varun Dhawan are superconfident and easy on the eye.


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