Yash Raj Films’ “Meri Pyaari Bindu”
Produced by: Aditya Chopra and Maneesh Sharma
Directed by: Akshay Roy
Written by: Suprotim Sengupta & Soumik Sen
Starring: Parineeti Chopra. Ayushmann Khurrana, Abish Mathew, Aparajita Adhya, Malvika Sitlani, Prakash Belawadi, Rajatava Datta, Aparajita Adhya, Kharaj Mukherjee & others
Only about a month ago, we watched two movies within a single one: “Naam Shabana.” That was necessary, given the theme.This time, the two-in-one has a different parameter: one (the first half) is bright, warm, energetic, chirpy and makes an impact. The second half is a confused, confusing, silly and totally illogical one, ending in a complete mess that shocks and irritates. The trouble is, the second half is always more important, as that is the culmination of a story.
Without getting into spoiler zones, we would like to ask the director (who has been AD on a mixed bag of movies from offbeat to ‘normal’ and must have imagined the latter to be a cakewalk, while it is the reverse!) what he was thinking. What he was thinking, that is, when a film is branded as a frothy, romantic comedy with a strong backdrop of music, with posters and promotion to match, goes in the addle-pated direction it does.
Bindu (Chopra), a confused South Indian girl, at the age of 5 or 6, becomes Abhimanyu (Ayushmann)’s neighbor in Kolkata. Soon, both become adults, and their friendship turns into love from Abhi’s side. Chopra is a fickle girl, a shade similar to (but much better than) Ranbir Kapoor’s messy character in “Ae Dil Hai Mushkil,” and she keeps hopping between careers (singing, dubbing) and cities and would-be partners.
Abhimanyu turns to writing pulp fiction after an executive stint in Mumbai. They keep bumping into each other, enjoying their togetherness, even committing to each other. Bindu is not on good terms with dad (Prakash Belawadi) who drove a car under the influence of alcohol, leading to an accident that killed her mother. Abhi’s parents (Rajatava Datta and Aparajita Adhya), on the other hand, dote on their son and want him to get married to someone—anyone, if not Bindu.
The story jumps in a flip-flop manner between past and present, with slides of dates and years (1999, 2000 et al.) and ‘Present Day’ flashing as if we are watching a “Crime Patrol” episode. Neither Abhi nor Bindu lacks bed partners, but still, Abhi claims his love for Bindu is true as it has lasted so many decades (the film starts in 1983 and comes to 34 years later – today). Finally, Abhi and Bindu meet at the terrace room in her house next to his in Kolkata for the climax.
The script, which shows so much promise in the first half, goes hopelessly askew in the second, which seems so long that we can barely believe it’s just an hour long. Needless drama and melodrama, silly comedy and ‘real’ situations abound—all for nothing as the culmination is so vacuous.
The worst part about writing this review is the spoilers we will have to reveal to show how senseless and completely harebrained the film turns out. So we will let it go and leave it to the viewer who wants to find how the movie is at his cost – if he does not trust this review! The second worst part is that such films may recover their budgets from extra-theatrical revenues and budgetary economics – audiences (the raison d’etre for making a movie) can take a walk! This encourages such filmmakers in this era of Nitesh Tiwari, Neeraj Pandey, Ali Abbas Zafar, S.S. Rajamouli and that caliber of ace filmmakers.
Parineeti Chopra lives Bindu, even in her most confused phases, and she is exceptional for such a badly-sketched film. Ayushmann is…sincere, so full marks to him for making his limited and passive character credible and warm. The actors who play his parents are entertaining, the rest alright.
Technically above average, the film’s music and background score are apt and functional respectively. But overall, this one’s only for Parineeti Chopra fans. The novelty of using retro songs is a gimmick that was done in better ways in some earlier films like “Kahaani” and “Dum Laga Ke Haisha.” Though this device is used slightly better than in “Ae Dil…,” as triggers of reminiscences, it is barely interesting. If GenY is hooked by such trivial pursuits, we can only say ‘Tsk! Tsk!”