Khushboo does stink a little

Khushboo does stink a little

Source: Sify

By: Sonia Chopra

Critic's Rating: 17/5

Friday 20 June 2008

Movie Title



Rajesh Ram Singh

Star Cast

Rishi Rehan, Avantikka, Ninad Kamat, Himani Shivpuri

Pahlaj Niahalni (producer of films like Shola Aur Shabnam, Andaz, Aankhen) is back after a hiatus of five years. His last few films were disasters like Uljhan and Talaash. This one is only marginally better. The mind boggles at the reason for the downward spiral of this prolific producer of the ?80s and ?90s.

Rajesh Ram Singh directs Khushboo that is intended, I think, to be a bittersweet story about love. Through decades, our makers have tried and tried to tell the same ol? tale, adding a twist here and there, to refresh and enliven it; but the ploy works only sometimes. Usually when there?s a star at helm. With a new star cast and an old story, the chances of the film likening itself to the audience are already dim.

Yes, in today?s dating and marriage scenario where religion, cast and creed don?t matter much, and our metros are full of smug-marrieds belonging to different backgrounds, the premise of the story is, at once, topical.

So we meet one super-ambitious type Raghu Iyer (Rishi Rehan) who?s all set to make his dream-life in America. But he?s to make a six-month detour stop in Chandigarh. And no prizes for guessing what happens there. He meets Punjabi kudi Pinky (Avantikka, another fan of the letter K) a photography enthusiast, if you please, who?s bubblier than soda and jumpier than jellybeans. She keeps appearing, disappearing and re-appearing wasting precious time and film reel.

Ultimately the two bump into each other and have a one-night-stand (quite adventurous, so far). Soon, we learn that she?s pregnant and wants to keep the baby. Now Raghu must accompany her to her village and meet her big, boisterous Punjabi family (a seemingly recent Bollywood clich?). The inevitable happens?a bond is formed between Raghu and the family and he is now in a dilemma. The couple eventually marries and further comedy ensues when Raghu?s south Indian parents meet the Punjabi bride.

Yawning reading the story already? Understandable as you?ve seen this plot spread thin in several films like Jab We Met, DDLJ, Namastey London and hey, you can even note snatches from A Walk in the Clouds (1995).

Technically, the film is alright. Of the cast, Avantikka stands out as the one with most zing and pizzazz. With a more steady-handed director she could deliver a decent performance. Dialogue is tryingly clich?d; screenplay plays it linear and safe. Adnan Sami?s music is above average (but faces serious competition from some superb film music off-late). Production value looks a bit outdated compared to the blindingly stunning visual quotient in our current films.

This week?s releases have been a mixed bag and if one must compare, Khushboo is a far better watch than Haal-e-Dil (which is not saying much), but not half as funny and fresh as De Taali.

Rating: One-and-a-half stars

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