MUMBAI— Remakes in general do not work as well as sequels, for there is no fame or branding. They are also never made as copies but have to be modernized and modified for the times. And so, unless that is done intelligently and with judicious changes, they usually come croppers.
BR Studios takes on the remaking of “Pati Patni Aur Woh” that was a hit in 1978. It is the next generation banner of BR Films, which originally made this then-revolutionary story on infidelity told in a fun way (with of course some necessary emotions). As a subject, it was loved by the audiences then despite the Adults Only tag and its bold theme. Today, in the era of living-in and multiple sexual partners, the topic hardly evokes sensation. Thus the best that can be done is to make a comedy with small-town sensibilities, where such activities are still more frowned upon though prevalent.
The setting is Kanpur, where Abhinav a.k.a. Chintu Tygai (Kartik Aaryan) is bored of his existence (Aaryan specializes in monologs, so there is one here as well). He has done his studies well, qualified, got a steady government job in the Public Works Department and has been married off to a glam and ambitious schoolteacher Vedika (Bhumi Pednekar), who wants to shake off their mundane existence and move to Delhi for a better life.
One day, Chintu encounters Tapasya Singh (Ananya Panday), who has come to Kanpur to look at some plots, and Chintu is assigned to help her. In an impulsive burst, Chintu tells her that his wife is having an affair because he likes Tapasya’s company. All three have had ex-es and as his tissue of lies snowball, come the inevitable messes and finally tears as Vedika comes to know the truth and leaves Chintu. What happens next?
A wafer-thin story is loaded with some (largely predictable but moderately funny) humor in the first half. It is in the second half that the story, or rather the script, crumbles into mediocrity and absurdity. Characters like the Lucknow cop (Manu Rishi Chadha) come and go at will, the parents of the couple behave very inconsistently given the situation and there is a forced attempt to generate lukewarm humor from serious situations.
The silliest thing is the bold way in which Vedika dresses when she teaches at a private coaching class, and how a student Rakesh Yadav (Shubham Kumar) who has a crush on her behaves with her and in general. The denouement comes in a very complex and silly manner with everyone other than the couple involved in the reformation of the husband.
Preachy sermonizing follows in the name of a social message or two and there is a hurried end. And there is a feeble attempt to re-create the saucy end of the earlier film.
All in all, the film simply lacks the potency of the first film, and the regular replay of one of its hit songs, “Thande Thande Paani Mein Nahaana Chahiye” sans any relevant situation) barely helps. BR Studios should look at good, original subjects like “Bareilly Ki Barfi” rather than make a mess by revisiting BR classics—this is the second mishmash after “Ittefaq.”
Lovers of vacuous entertainment (our mind goes to the last Kartik film, “Luka Chhupi”) are likely to endorse this one, but the solid pith and connectivity of so many small-town delights in the last two years (“Bareilly Ki Barfi,” “Stree,” “Badhaaai Ho,” “Dreamgirl,” “Bala” et al) and their freshness are totally missing.
The two heroines are alright, but even Kartik Aaryan (who plays the same kind of roles in the same way) and Aparashakti Khurrana (excellent as the too-loyal friend Fahim) cannot salvage this trivial drama that does not even attempt any innovation or uniqueness.
Technically, the film is alright, but director Mudassar Aziz only handles the actors well, and fails to write a good base: a tight, credible and truly funny script. The music is nothing but mayhem and the background score no great shakes.
Just like the film.
Produced by: Bhushan Kumar, Krishan Kumar, Renu Chopra and Juno Chopra
Written and directed by: Mudassar Aziz
Music: Anand-Milind, Tanishk Bagchi, Tony Kakkar, Sachet-Parampara, Rochak Kohli, Lijo George & DJ Chetas
Starring: Kartik Aaryan, Bhumi Pednekar, Ananya Panday, Aparadhakti Khurrana, Rajesh Sharma, K.K. Raina, Navni Parihar, Neeraj Sood, Geeta Agarwal Sharma, Shubham Kumar, Manu Rishi Chadha Sp. App.: Kriti Sanon & Sunny Singh Nijjar.