Friday, September 9, 2011

Mere Brother Ki Dulhan : Movie Review by Taran Adarsh



Our fascination for shaadis, band-baaja-baaraats, dulha-dulhans and swayamvars is for all to see. In Bollywood, most stories either begin with a shaadi or end with a shaadi. The audience claps the maximum when the hero wins his bride in the climax, overcoming all obstacles and hurdles thrown on his way by opponents. Like a veteran film-maker once told me, "Marriages [in Hindi films] can never go out of fashion." I completely agree!

Yash Raj too has had their share of shaadis and baaraats on celluloid. Be it DILWALE DULHANIA LE JAYENGE or BAND BAAJA BAARAAT, the production house has successfully come up with stories that had the viewer thirsting for more. MERE BROTHER KI DULHAN more than lives up to the legacy. Sure, it has the trademark flamboyancy and family drama associated with Yash Raj, but it's totally different from what we've watched thus far.


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Let me clarify something vital, before we proceed further. MERE BROTHER KI DULHAN has nothing to do with Onir's SORRY BHAI or the Barbara Mori starrer MY BROTHER'S WIFE. Nor is it an adaptation/rip-off of the Hollywood film DAN IN REAL LIFE. There's also talk that the film bears an uncanny resemblance to Yash Raj's earlier film MERE YAAR KI SHAADI HAI. On the contrary, the inspiration for this film, as director Ali Abbas Zafar confessed to me, came from the matrimonial advertisements in newspapers. And the director does just that -- he picks up an interesting plot, garnishes it with appealing characters and makes a fun-and-joyous ride that keeps you hooked for most parts. In fact, there's never a dull moment in this prem kahani involving two brothers and the girl they both love, in the first hour at least. The wacky adventures that follow once the loony dulhaniya enters the picture are thoroughly amusing and entertaining. However, it's only towards the second hour that the film dips at places, though it picks up towards the end.

MERE BROTHER KI DULHAN isn't trite or clich├ęd, but it's simple and honest, so much so that this could be the story of someone you know. Thanks to a well directed cast, sparkling script and a luminous soundtrack, this is easily one of the most heartwarming movies from the leading production house.

Kush [Imran Khan] is looking for the ideal Indian bride for his brother Luv [Ali Zafar], who stays in London. In his quest, Kush goes through an array of wacky encounters with several families until he finally finds that perfect girl in Dimple [Katrina Kaif], the craziest / wackiest girl he has ever known.

Both the families meet. Formalities are completed. Preparations proceed in full swing. And just then Kush falls in love with Dimple... his brother's dulhan.

On hindsight, if someone were to tell you that the story of the film is about a guy who falls in love with the bride he has chosen for his brother, you'd expect lots of melodrama and an undercurrent of tension after a point in the narrative. I'd say, ignore all the nagging misconceptions or preconceived notions you may have had about MERE BROTHER KI DULHAN. Venture into the cineplex with an open mind and trust me, as the reels unfold, you'll realize that the film is not like what you may have envisioned prior to its screening. It makes wonderful sense!

Most rom-coms follow the conventional route. You know how they start, what's in store in the middle and how they usually end. They don't really challenge the intellect, frankly. But there's a twist in the tale in MERE BROTHER KI DULHAN that catches you by surprise. Sure, it's about two guys liking the same girl -- a formula that's done to death -- but even if the theme has been used and re-used time and again, there's always scope that the next man who attempts it may treat it slightly differently. Thankfully, MERE BROTHER KI DULHAN has the conventional plot, but isn't conventional in the true sense. And it's definitely not the been-there-seen-that kind of a movie either.

On the flip side, MERE BROTHER KI DULHAN has its share of few predictable moments in its second hour. Actually, the graph of the film dips, albeit slightly, in the post-interval portions. The problem is, the first hour is so high on entertainment quotient that you expect the second hour to supersede the first by leaps and bounds. Lots seem to happen in the post-interval portions, but the episodes aren't as exciting as the first hour, which is why you feel the difference. However, the finale throws a new twist, which may appear stretched to some, but is likeable nonetheless.

First-time director Ali Abbas Zafar has complete grasp over the medium and has treated each scene wonderfully well. Besides, he has drawn admirable performances from the principal characters. Handling comic scenes is one tough job, but Ali seems to have a flair for it. MERE BROTHER KI DULHAN has a winner of a soundtrack. Expectedly, the songs, composed by Sohail Sen, stress on the fun quotient that compliments the mood of this film. The songs are urbane-friendly, yet massy, with 'Dhunki', 'Choomantar', 'Madhubala' and the title track being excellent compositions. I would also like to make a special mention of the choreography of these songs [Bosco-Caesar]. It's truly eye-catching. Sudeep Chatterjee's cinematography is vibrant.

The performances are easy on the eyes. The unlikely chemistry between Katrina and Imran coupled with Ali Zafar's impeccable comic timing keeps you glued to the screen. Imran, frankly, seems the apt choice for this role and he more than lives up to it. Katrina is only getting better and more endearing with every release. Ali Zafar is a supremely talented actor and this film proves it yet again.

Tara D'Souza does a fine job. Parikshit Sahni and Kanwaljeet Singh are truly wonderful. The actor who plays Imran's friend is natural. John Abraham appears in a cameo.

On the whole, MERE BROTHER KI DULHAN is a delectably wholesome, heartening, feel-good entertainer. Not just a comedy, but also a tender, bittersweet saga, this rom-com is sure to melt your heart, then restore it anew all over again. Yet another winner from Yash Raj!

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