Bareilly Ki Barfi - Review

wogma rating: Even the keen, wait for DVD (?)
quick review:

If even a ridiculous plot feels real, it says a lot about performances and all departments that work on the look and feel of a film including art and costume design.

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Wogma Review

What does it say about me when I say that the ridiculous climax was predictable? That I watch a lot of films with ridiculous endings for sure! Right from a few minutes after the interval, I sincerely hoped for it to not happen the way I expected it to unfold. Oh well, some things are just not meant to be.

Also, it is not like the parts before the climax are spectacular. Small town Bareilly is like any other Indian small towns (or cities) - narrow lanes, broken signboards, news of closing down businesses. The inhabitants pretend to understand the English language and take pride in it, small-time entrepreneurs are content with keeping their family happy.

Amidst this town that has its share of sexism, is a family that is what we would call liberal. For starters, the rare, middle-aged couple has only one daughter – a family composition unheard of in rural India. Taking that further, the father (Pankaj Tripathi) bums a cigarette from his daughter; is sensitive to his wive's thyroid malfunction-induced mood swings ; isn't too concerned that his daughter is being rejected by prospects in the arranged marriage system; and so on. Oh yeah, he also talks to the ceiling fan when he is in bed but not sleepy. Unrelated but quirky. The mother (Seema Pahwa) protests against all of this and more, but they are only mock protests. You can sense she wants this freedom for her daughter.

The daughter, in her turn, takes what can be called undue advantage. She is spirited but not in a loud, “exuberance has to reek out of every word that I utter” kind of a way. This is a welcome departure from our romcoms' lead lady these days, who have to be brash and “out there” to show they are liberal and modern. To help matters along, Kriti Sanon doesn't once go overboard. If you are inclined to invest yourself so, the lackluster climax warrants a mental playback of some scenes and you admire her performance a tad more. Same goes for the usually dependable Rajkummar Rao. In comparison though, his Jekyll-and-Hyde becomes slightly tiresome and Ayushmann Khurana, for the first time in his career, seemed dull.

In terms of story, the movie is exactly about what you see in the trailer. A girl falls in love with the author of a book. But, the author is sort-of anonymous, but he starts liking the girl. And so on and so forth. As anticipated there aren't any great lines. The attempt is to keep it real, which becomes a little dry. Javed Akhtar as narrator always keeps you hopeful for some great lines but they don't come by.

Bareilly Ki Barfi turns out to be as underwhelming as the trailer. Neither does it have the sparks of a romance, nor the laughs of a comedy. What it does have is some fine performances, lovely details and nuances that are not usually found in Hindi films. But, these actors have given finer performances. So, put together that makes Barielly Ki Barfi a “maybe watch if it happens to be playing” kind of a film.

- meeta, a part of the audience

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: None
  • Language: Mild abuses
  • Nudity & Sexual content: Some talk about virginity. And characters talking about a woman's exposed midriff in a photo.
  • Concept: A man who goes to great extents to get a woman to like him
  • General Look and Feel: Small town India feel.

Detailed Ratings (out of 5):

  • Direction: 2
  • Story: 1.5
  • Lead Actors: 3.5
  • Character Artists: 2.5
  • Dialogues: 3
  • Screenplay: 2.5
  • Music Director: 3
  • Lyrics: 2.5

Bareilly Ki Barfi - Movie Details

Bareilly Ki Barfi - Trailer

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Comments (1)

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Fan:

A sweet delicacy to savor by everyone.

Me and the family thoroughly enjoyed this film. It is a simple story, set in a small town whose claim to fame is being prominently mentioned in a famous 1960s song, Bareilly.

The promos set up the story as your typical Hrishikesh Mukherjee romcom. And if like me you have watched one a many films from the 1960s and the 1970s then you would almost expect a love triangle sob story. Whatever your expectations be, there are good chances that the film will entertain you.

In the middle of the film when you feel the pain of any character then the film works for you. That is when you wish a Hrishikesh Mukherjee style reveal of a barfi-esque sweet drama to make the pain disappear. Because you certainly don't want a Chetan Anand style tragic conclusion. And that tussle in your heart keeps you glued.

Performances from all are sincere. Kriti finally reveals her natural side in her 4th outing. She plays the role of a 2017 young gal with complete natural ease. Her act is totally believable and real. Unlike YRF and Dharma, whose standard formula to depict a girl being modern and progressive [comment partially delete because it gives a part of the movie away] the makers of BkB have succeeded in showing Bitti as progressive without resorting to such nonsense. Rajkumar Rao is top notch, he is simply amazing in his choice of films and gamut of roles that he plays. Ayushyaman seems to be getting repetitive but yet he delivers a fine act. Chaudhary, who plays Munna the pal to Ayushyaman, resembles heavily Shahid Kapur, and is fairly good. Tripathi yet again gets a magnificent role (previous time being in Nil Battey Sannata with more or less same production team as in this film). The film is short, to the point, gives you enough LOL moments, and keeps a smile on the face throughout most part of it.

It is a light watch, will not leave you exhausted despite a few "Bas kar, rulayega kya" moments. This Barfi can be savored by all, no side effects.

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