In this bromance of sorts, three friends are all set to go on a road trip. The idea is to incorporate a friend's cousin's "big fat wedding" in the plan.
So you have the cliched bonding shots of them bumming around, taking turns to drive, pulling each other's leg and stopping for a pee break.
Off the three, one (Sahil Anand) is set to marry his super dominating girlfriend who calls him 'Guggu' and picks out his wardrobe for each occasion.
Then there's Harvinder (Sumit Suri, excellent) who is a virgin and looking to ge laid. The third friend Rohan played by Amol Parasher is gay (thank heavens the film doesn't follow Bollywood's lead and turn the character into a caricature).
The groom-to-be has a drunken one-night-stand with a woman (Erica Fernandes) that leads to complicate his life. Harvinder's virgin tag refuses to leave him (the film veers to adult comedy genre in these portions) and Rohan is upset having just broken off with his insecure partner.
The film meanders on turning to the subject of AIDS and how NGOs can step in to help with the disease and stigma attached with it.
Nila Madhab Panda's earlier films like I am Kalam and Jalpari were also message-based films and were more successful in blending a message within an entertaining story. Both films, especially I am Kalam, were heart-warming and made you think without getting preachy.
One wonders what went wrong here. Granted the film has its moments but the insinuated attempts at making the film "fun" and "commercial" are jarring. Take the scene at the roadside dhabba where you see a fully choreographed item dance number, with a character explaining it off as a 'banjara' (gypsy) tradition.
For comedy, you have tired cliches like a character rushing off to buy a condom but too shy to ask for it at the store. Or the constant bhangra music in the background score whenever something funny is happening. Then you have the film burst into a typical Bollywood wedding song complete with Mika singing inane lyrics.
Why would an astute filmmaker such as Nila do a 360-degree turn and try a Karan Johar? One cannot criticise a filmmaker for trying a new format or technique to tell his story. But one misses the effortless charm of his earlier films and his signature style.
Here, the cast is sincere, the cinematography is beautiful, and there are moments that are endearing. But this film could have been much more. More fun, more heart-felt, and told with much more conviction (with a more fitting film title as well).
Still, for the sincere performances and the topical subject of the film, one could sample this without expecting too much.
Rating: Two and a half stars