Review - Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi: It's o-kay, <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/-ji ">ji</a>!

wogma rating: The keen should rent; else TV (?)
quick review:

rab ne bana di jodi takes on the nitty-gritty of the romance in an arranged marriage. Enough reason for Aditya Chopra to bring in the mush and gush. Yet, "What a woman wants?" and "What her man is capable of giving" is explored with some insight. We are growing up, but only 'haule haule'

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Wogma Review

The sun shines on the city's landmarks and makes them look even prettier. And you know you are in a YRF movie. Albeit this time, you see the ruggedness of the city too. You also are in awe of the restraint. 15-20 minutes and no mention of a foreign location. Another 5 minutes and the background music is still in the background. Wow! 10 more minutes and you might just want to pinch yourself because Shah Rukh Khan hasn't yet done that annoying thing with his eyebrow and lips. And...the spell breaks. Bring on the accordion, the loud chatter, the self-referencing, and all. We were missing you.

There are only three two-and-a-half characters here, Surendra, his wife Tani and his friend Bobby. Yes, the back-story is barebones or even less. This leaves room for the crux of the relationship. "L-O-V-E". And here it thankfully goes a couple of layers deep. It takes you into the world of this twosome that got married without really knowing each other. What it takes for two decent human beings to make it work and stick it out. The sacrifices one makes in the form of changes to your persona that lead to claustrophobia. Just like it is frustratingly boring for an extrovert to convert into an introvert, it is not really acceptable for a shy person to have bubbly enthusiasm as a permanent feature.

These are all subtle issues that need delicate treatment. And here starts the real trouble. The timid Surendra, in his attempt to please Tani transforms into a bright gold and yellow creature, called - what else - Raj. Why? Can only the exact opposite personality can create impact and impress the Mrs? Isn't there anything in between? I'm not even interested in the missing 'how', the 'why' hasn't stopped bothering yet.

We have a star amongst us who needs to keep everyone pleased. In the name of versatility, his character HAS to make a diagonally opposite change. Actually, I had just begun to enjoy Shah Rukh's performance as the middle-class government servant, Surendra Sahni, with the minor twitches and eye movements when suddenly he transfigured into a badly-dressed Shah Rukh Khan - eyebrow curled, whispering romantic inanities, piling on an inconsistent accent and only waiting for someone to grant him the permission to start stutt-stutt-stuttering. Many thanks to whoever said NO!

The story is about Surendra and his wife. Why did we have Vinay Pathak playing Surendra's friend, the devil's advocate, the supposed "inner voice"? His character was especially redundant given that Surendra had an alter-ego of his own. There wasn't enough room for Vinay to maneuver around and yet he can make over-the-top acting look adorable.

Surendra's lady love, Tani, played by Anushka Sharma seems like she has the 'single-expression' training form the YRF's-Aishwarya-Rai school of non-acting. The other expressions are all taken care of by that drop of glycerin.

The role of women in movies like these is very cleverly written. She's the center of the plot because the protagonist, his alter-ego and his friend all care for her, adore her, love her. But, the lady's part is ever-so sketchily written. What do we know about her? Are we made a part of her confusion? Do we know why she makes one decision or the other? No! And thus I resign to how these roles are written to give us a feeling that it's all about the woman. And the climax too...well...let's just say the movie has a male-chauvinistic touch.

Also, our newly married couple lives in a socio-economic vacuum. They have no social pressures. In the heart of Amritsar, a married woman dances and prances about with a 'stranger'. Sure there are the token office mates, but here we see the one Panjabi family with only two members - the husband-ji and the wife-ji and the transformed husband-ji.

And yet, it is not the take a chill-pill and watch kind of movies. The few facets of a utopian arranged marriage that rab ne bana di jodi touches upon are intriguing. I wonder how much those who can't identify with such an arrangement will appreciate it, but that the makers bothered deserves extra credit. What hurts is that if they are smart enough to hit upon these particular nuances, how can they monkey around so much for the rest of the movie?

Songs: Anything about the music in the above review would be as out of place as the songs were in the movie. So, I'm attaching it here in the end like a song in the end credits. Songs have always been more about the lyrics for me. And I look forward to Jaideep Sahni's play with words. I call him the list-maker of the industry. His lyrics are usually in the form of lists. As boring as it sounds, they are usually interesting observations. The most ill-placed song "hum hai rahi pyar ke" had the most beautiful tweaking of phrases/songs/names of Hindi movies. It had delightful picturization and guest appearances too. It would have worked so much better as an award show performance. The rest was all ho-hum - lyrics, music, picturization, costumes, etc.

- meeta, a part of the audience

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: None. There's a semi-comic sumo wrestling round.
  • Nudity & Sexual content: None
  • Concept: How a couple fall in love after they get married.
  • General Look and Feel: It's bright, sprinkled with songs. It maintains a light vein despite an emotional scene at regular intervals.

Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi - Movie Details

Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi - Trailer

Comments (6)

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ruchi:

Good review meetu. You are perenially favorite among us as the place to go to before shelling out the exobitant rs. 150 a head movie ticket. You save us time money and a lot of frayed tempers.

Movie buff:

The story sounds quite exciting and different. I think i'll go and check the movie out.

Reviews: Rab ne Bana Di Jodi:

[...] Meetu,without giving the movie away [...]

meetu:

Thanks Silvan. The applause sounded about the same :) I saw it in E-square a local multiplex in Pune.

Thanks for the trust, MovieBhakt.

:) Sudhir Nair. What do you mean by "i can’t fathom the bit about the heroine not knowing the difference between the two guys in her life"

Ruchi, at your service ma'am! :D Believe me, the pleasure is mine.

Movie Buff, the concept is interesting indeed - Love after marriage in an arranged marriage set-up. Do let us know what you think.

Thanks for putting your thoughts down here, Jay

Now, where did you get that from, Prabhash? I can't handle Shah Rukh doing those weird things in the name of acting.

Ashwini, I thought the story was a little different, in the sense that it explored the relationship in terms of love and romance after marriage.

meetu:

prashant believe it or not, there are a few arranged-marriage couples I know who have had similar feelings about the spouse immediately after the wedding. Obviously, not to the extremes of one changing avatar and the other being a big enough fool to not recognize, but I'm talking about the awkwardness, the missing element of romance, etc.

Movie:

I liked the movie. But i guess i'll give it a 3

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