'Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania'
Director: Shashank Khaitan
Cast: Varun Dhawan, Alia Bhatt, Siddharth Shukla, Sahil Vaid, Deepika Amin, Ashutosh Rana
Alia Bhatt and Varun Dhawan in 'Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania'
So here's a movie, which is an unpretentious, unabashed tribute to a film released in the '90s and which went on to get a cult status. Debut director Shashank Khaitan, obviously a huge fan of 'Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge', takes inspiration from Raj and Simran's love story and presents his own version through Humpty Sharma (Varun Dhawan) and Kavya Pratap Singh's (Alia Bhatt) romance. So is it a lazy attempt at movie making? Yes and no. Laziness does peep through some of the dialogues and screenplay, which, in some scenes, seem "more than inspired" from the original and have been just given a mandatory twist to make them contemporary. But to its credit, this film does attempt to have its own personality too, especially when it comes to the lead characters and their interaction. In a refreshing case of role reversal, Humpty is an emotional fool who keeps looking for reassurance from the beer-guzzling feisty Kavya, who is more practical and hence, leads the story according to her convenience.
Kavya, a small town girl from Ambala, chooses not to think for herself when it comes to marriage and blindly follow her father (Ashutosh Rana)'s instructions, except for just one wish. She wants a Kareena Kapoor-kind designer lehenga in her trousseau and in search of that elusive lehenga, she goes to Delhi and bumps into Humpty, who is looking for a brand new car for his lovable dad. After a romp between the sheets, the two go back to their lives. Kavya is all set to marry the near-perfect Angad (Siddharth Shukla), handpicked by her dad. Some scenes like the ones where Humpty very un-hero like suffers from inferiority complex when he compares himself to Angad are original and they keep you glued to the story.
The formidable Amrish Puri is replaced by Rana and he makes a decent attempt. So does the other competent supporting cast, which includes two of Humpty's friends and Kavya's family members. I give one extra star to the lead couple. The two are so comfortable together that even when they are so much as glancing at each other, their passion is palpable. While Alia is endearing and natural, it is Varun, who steals most of the scenes with his utterly sincere performance. The scene where he breaks down when confronted with the possibility of losing Kavya gives us a glimpse of his potential.
This film clearly doesn't take itself too seriously and it doesn't want you to either, which is kind of nice. A me-too, even if in the form of open admiration, has the danger of being easily forgettable. But this film might just not be, because it does manage to stand on its own two feet at some points.