Producer & Director: Vidhu Vinod Chopra
*ing: Bobby Deol, Introducing Neha, Shammi Kapoor, Moushami Chatterjee, Johny Lever
Music: Anu Malik
Released on : July 17, 1998
Reviewed by: Anjali Abrol
Bobby Deol. Blah. King of I-need-a-haircut-but-it-seems-to-be-my-greatest-asset-in-Bollywood. Neha, a.k.a. Shabana....newcomer, bholi bhali, and not much publicity about her, hence, no high expectations, either. Johnny Lever. Possibility of humor. Vidhu, Vir and Vinod Chopra. 1942: A Love Story. Shot mostly in Shimla. Nice scenery. Great team. Anu Malik. What songs are we going to copy now?
If it weren't for the Chopra team, I honestly would not have gone. But I have faith in them...so what if they decided to use Bobby, as the guinea pig? Maybe THEY could make some good out of him, and put a story to the movie, too! A story and good acting? High hopes, I know, I know.
Birju (Bobby) is a mischievous bacha who gets away with everything....his older bhai is a total budhu, his baap prays to his money safe every morning, his mummy is a typical doting mummy, his bhabhi is just a thing standing around with no personality, and his nephew is a cute lil kid. Neha is the daughter of a school teacher (Moushimi Chatterjee). Basically, Birju sees Neha, falls in the water, she giggles, blahblah, songs here there, and he sneezes four times every like four minutes in the movie (a sign of their love, for sure. Romance at great heights).
Problems arise when they wish to get married. Birju's dad only wants money, Neha's mother does not have anything of asset except for her daughter, so Birju and his loyal friend do hera pheri and get caught on the night of the wedding...and blahblahblah (which you are going to have to watch to find out what the blahblah is!).
The cast. Bobby Deol was actually well-chosen for this movie, since his career has yet to be shaped and he is still considerably fresh. He actually acted and did a good job at that. Neha (in the credits her real name was listed as Neha, but in the magazines she is referred to as Shabana) was a pretty, fresh girl who fit her role nicely and did justice to it, probably better than most typical heroines who dominate at the moment. It's nice to be able to say that 'Simple is beautiful' and prove it as well. Johnny Lever kept up the humorous side of the movie, and will always be known as the WHO HOW guy with the best line in the movie, "Aap hai who???". Shammi Kapoor was just a budha on the bench and seemed like he was just shoved in to show his face(s). Moushimi Chatterjee played the role of Neha's mother quite well and was a nice change from the typical Farida Jalal or Bindu (hmm, Bindu would have added another angle of annoying humor).The nephew was really a good actor, and would have been better than that annoying chinni-eyed screech voice blah of a kid named Aditya Narayan in Jab Pyar Kisise Hota Hai.
The scenery was breath-taking. The Chopra team caught the essence of beauty in each shot, and even if the movie itself was bakwaas, the movie would have been worth watching (and only in the theater!) just for the scenes. The songs fit each scene nicely, and these songs were as breath-taking as each shot (Though Sanjeevani got to be reallyyyyy annoying with her two-year-old voice and yes, made even young, bholi bhali Neha seem like a budhi!). If Anu Malik copied his music from anyone, I really don't care, because the whole album is great.
The two downfalls of the movie were Bobby's hair and the lottery ticket. Bobby's hair needs taming. It's ANNOYING. Neha wishes for Bobby to be an honest and honorable person, and he works hard to be that. Yet he buys a fixed lottery ticket and acts like it is a honest act because provided he wins the lottery, it will be his own mehnat ki kamai.....uhhhh ok. But stealing money is dishonest. Right. Big flaw right there. Second, the lottery ticket made the movie stretch unnecesarily and took away from the focus of the movie. It became more of a hassle that you wished they had never brought up.
Overall, the movie was up to par with 1942: A Love Story and other such movies. The Chopra team did not disappoint us, even with such high standards of previous movies. It is a movie worth watching in the theater, any other place would be injust. Even if you are not a fan of the cast (like me), go for the movie for once and not for the actor-actress...it's worth it.
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