What a Weekend Part 2 - Dulha Mil Gaya

When travelling 2 hours to see a movie, I think it's best to make good of your time and pack as much in as you can. My sister and I started our day seeing 3 Idiots, which was amazing. After sitting through the credits to see if I could spot Greta from memsaabstory in the credits (she assisted with the subtitles for the film), we left the theatre, still trying to calm down from our movie high. From there we hit Calgary's Indian district to pick up some more movies (like I really need to buy more, but how can I resist?), have a look for some wedding jewelery for my sis, and eat some to die for Indian cuisine. That would have been enough to create a great day, but back to the theatres we headed to see Dulha Mil Gaya.

I didn't actually think that this movie was ever going to see the light of day after taking years to make it to the big screen. That's a lot of pressure for anyone, let alone a first time director like Mudassar Aziz, and even with the extended special appearance by Shah Rukh, I left the theatre thinking that it was a good thing that we'd seen 3 Idiots earlier to make the 3 hours on the highway worthwhile.

The movie has a story with great potential. Fardeen Khan plays Tej Dhanraj (aka Donsai), a playboy who lives extravagantly, loves loosely and plays hard while riding on the coattails of his deceased father's fortune. He soon discovers that his father's will demands him to marry Samarpreet (relative newcomer Ishita Sharma),the Punjabi daughter of his father's friend, in order to retain his vast wealth. Either that or he has to pay back all the money he's squandered away in the last year, a grand total of 10 million dollars. So, Donsai decides his only option is to abide by his father's wishes, but not without first finding a loophole. Marry the girl, leave her behind, and send big fat monthly cheques to ease your conscience.

Longing for him, the sweet and simple Samarpreet then decides, in a moment of sheer idiocy, to follow her precious Tej to Trinidad. How could she not? Those couple of hours spent talking about the latrine would even win me over. But in a world where mediocre looking bachelors can find themselves in the company of supermodels, she discovers that her prince charming is nothing but a wolf in bad clothing. This is where everyone's favorite diva, Shimmer (Sushmita) decides to take her in, and, doing her very best Henry Higgins impression, turns Samarpeet into hottie Samara in an attempt to help her woo Donsai back. In the same course, Shimmer has to deal with her own commitment phobias, substituting career and ambition for love. Long time multi-millionaire boyfriend, Pawan Raj Gandhi or "PRG" for short (Shah Rukh Khan) makes a welcome appearance half way through the film as he continues to pursue his lady love but is spurned at every turn.

I apologize to any of the Fardeen fans out there, but I have to say that, even though I haven't seen very many of his films, I don't think that Fardeen Khan has got the it factor. The "IT" that makes girls swoon at the sight of you, the "IT" that brings the masses to the cinema to drop their hard earned coin, the "IT" that let's people think that you are an actor on your own merit and not your name. During our own intermission between movies, while I was at the movie store, I was talking to the owner about going to see Dulha Mil Gaya. She said that this was Bollywood's way of moving Fardeen up on the star ladder. I don't think it worked. That's not to say I think he was horrible in it. I've seen much worse, but he was really just passable and has a long way to go if he's ever going to reach the top of the food chain.

I think I've decided that Sushmita Sen belongs to that league of woman who are too beautiful for their own good. If one doesn't care for her acting, all you need to do is tune her out and just watch her and it's still not a bad experience. The only other movie I've seen Sushmita in was Farah's Main Hoon Na, but I liked her in that and enjoyed her in this too. Playing an exaggerated version of herself, her Shimmer character is totally 100% diva which was probably the reason why she got the funniest lines in the movie. The lady is a class act all the way and I admire her immensely on and off screen. Ishita Sharma is also a treat to watch and she gives us a confident debut. I preferred the simple and sweet Samarpreet though to the polished Samara and think that she does lose a bit of her charm after the makeover. I would be interested to see where she goes from here. She very well could have a decent future in films if she makes the right choices from here on.

The reason I even wanted to see this film could be summed up in three words. Guesses anyone? Well, if you said anything other than SRK, you don't know me very well! ;) It must have been a real stroke of luck to land Shah Rukh for his first film, even if it’s in a short role. Unfortunately, Aziz doesn't give him much to work with as far as story goes and the performance comes off like we are just watching Shah as himself. However, the scene where he jumps into the sea to salvage Shimmer’s ‘fake’ dog would have fallen flat, if not for the way he pulls it off glistening wet and oozing with charisma and for the first time ever I considered a man the movie's eye candy. At any rate, I'm going to treat this role as an appetizer for the real thing when My Name Is Khan comes out next month.

I should probably add a little side note about the supporting players, though there's not really much good to say. Johnny Lever shows up in a wasted role (anyone could have been cast as Tej's butler, the role was so minimal and had no impact). Shimmer's character is joined by her personal assistant (Suchitra Pillai), and Howard Rosamayer playing the effeminate man Friday. Neither add anything meaningful or comical to the film. There are a few other characters that are easily forgettable.

As the person responsible for the music in this film, Lalit Pandit has an enormous track record to maintian. It wasn't until I did a bit of research that I discovered that, as the other half of the team Jatin-Lalit, he was responsible for nearly 70 soundtracks, the likes of which include Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham and Fanaa, among several others that are favorites of mine. I liked all the music in this film before I saw the movie, but liked it even more after. My picks are probably Aaja Aaja Mera Ranjhna and the title track, but I really like all the songs. Probably the most energetic soundtrack that I've enjoyed in its entirety in a long time.

Final analysis: see it in theatres if you are a die hard Shah Rukh or Sushmita fan. Otherwise it's probably best to wait and rent it when it comes out on dvd.

6 Response to "What a Weekend Part 2 - Dulha Mil Gaya"

  1. Jules says:
    January 13, 2010 at 10:39 PM

    Again, thanks for the awesome weekend! Not one I'll forget!! I went to see this one not even really knowing what it was about. SRK was totally the draw for me here. Had he not been in it, I doubt we'd have stayed. Though maybe...

    It was a cute movie, no more, no less.

  2. shell says:
    January 14, 2010 at 7:02 AM

    Well, we would have stayed I'm sure. We tend to ride things out till the end, don't we?

    If I ever decide to own it, it will be just for the Shah Rukh appearance.

  3. Anonymous Says:
    January 16, 2010 at 4:14 AM

    Oh God it's early, 6:55AM and I'm at work on Saturday morning to finish a design project by 1:00PM. I thought your double feature day was awesome so when I got this weeks email newsletter from my local theater with this weekends Bollywood movie schedule I thought why not see both! So after work I'm going to see 3 Idiots this afternoon and Chance Pe Dance this evening. Thank God, the coffee is ready...

  4. shell says:
    January 16, 2010 at 7:29 AM

    LOL! I'm so glad I could be an inspiration! I've decided that if I have to be on the highway for 3+ hours then I might as well make it totally worth it! I hope you enjoy 3 Idiots. So far I haven't heard many good things about CPD, but at least you get to see Shahid in all his dancing glory. Hope you have a fantastic movie filled day (and hope you got your project done too!)

  5. Erin Georgia says:
    January 17, 2010 at 9:45 AM

    Hmm, I'm kind of bummed that this wasn't as good as it sounded like it would be, but I know I'll rent it anyway when it comes out. SRK just does that to me. And, I fell in love with the music a while back, so I want to see the songs in context!

    Haha, the pillows with PRG on them in the video?! I don't know why stuff like that still surprises me in BW films... I should be used to it by now. ;)

  6. shell says:
    January 17, 2010 at 12:04 PM

    I think it's a decent rental Erin, and I think you'll enjoy it enough when it comes out. The songs are definitely fun, I think.
    There is lots of cheesy "pillow talk" in the movie, but every time I saw it I just chuckled.