wogma rating: Add to 'must watch' list (?)
Lafangey Parindey satisfies my urge to see a gripping drama. Deepika Padukone and Neil Nitin Mukesh showcase all the masala, and yet it doesn't become too much for the palate to take. A film jis mein emotion bhi hai d-rrrama bhi hai t-rrragedy bhi hai (a popular dialogue from Sholay which translates to has emotion, drama, tragedy) and comedy and action too - and all in good portions.Read more
NOT A REVIEW - Just hoping in the midst of silly captions in the promos there is a nicely made love story in there…
The Lafangey Parindey promos greet you with a level of lame no one can be proud of - 'One-shot Nandu', 'He is wild, she is blind', 'He was born to fight', 'She was born to fly', 'He'll teach her to see', 'She'll teach him to love'. (gag at the last one there.) Oh and I spared you the distress caused by some 'mard-dard' line in the beginning.
The more I read about Lafangey Parindey, the more worried I got. There was this article about how rotten fish were brought into the set. This was for a scene in which Neil Nitin Mukhesh's character, Nandu is teaching Deepika Padukone's character to see. I am assuming this is by using her other sensory organs. Uhhh...If someone has to use rotten fish to accentuate the sense of smell, isn't their sense of smell beyond repair?
I have another question. The story is supposedly set in the underbelly of big-bad Mumbai. And our lady, Deepika Padukone is an ace skater. How does someone not-exactly-affluent get into a sport like skating, that too blind? I can Neil Nitin Mukesh getting passionate about beating and getting voluntarily beaten up, but skating will take some convincing.
Ok-ok, I'll get over it! I just hope all my questions and beyond will be answered more than satisfactorily this coming Friday, Aug 20.
Unfortunately, one apprehension is just leading me to another. From the initial looks, I'm not too convinced about the casting. Deepika Padukone's frozen-spine posture just doesn't come across as that of a girl who's grown up in the dark streets of Mumbai. Nor does the language sound convincing. And the stills of her dance postures look off, awkward, weird.
But the hope is that Neil Nitin Mukesh might just fit the bill as the macho who has no clue how to handle his feelings for a girl. His confusion comes through even in the trailers and looks like within the lame lines there are a few endearing moments.
Also, cringeworthy promos make me worry. I hate going into a film with such baggage. So, I dug a bit further, till I saw some ray of hope. And like always you do find out the thought behind the process. Whether or not I like the film, the people who have worked on it have put in their sweat and blood, their mind, soul, and heart. And no one can take away from that -
I also enjoyed this other unique promotion technique.
Oh yeah and there's supposed to be a liplock to lure us into the theater, Neil's first ever on-screen one at that!
The music is by R Anandh, known for is ad-jingles for Limca, and this is his debut album. Music reviews in general have liked the album. Milliblog gives R. Anandh a warm welcome. IBN says the music is entertaining. Rediff finds it irresistibly whimsical. Musicaloud loved 3 of the 6 tracks. Hindustan Times calls the album a solid, confident debut. Indian Express finds a different flavor in each song. Glamsham predicts a chartbuster and Megzone can't stop listening to it.
- meeta, a part of the audience
Sincere aplogies. To the writer, director, and actors for being so apprehensive about Lafangey Parindey. I made some promo-based assumptions that were completely off. And boy, am I glad!! It can be argued that I liked the film because my theories were thrown out of the window. What's done is done. I came out of the theater shaking my head in disapproval at the climax but with a generally happy feeling. And that's how the score stands.
Lafangey Parindey is of course, a to-the-core love story. And there is absolutely nothing extraordinary about the one-line plot anyone would use to describe it. The climax is a forgone conclusion. Also like any of the basic seven stories that exist in the world, it’s how the characters get where they are, their ups and downs that matter. Lafangey Parindey engaged and made me care for the protagonists. In fact, even a couple of side characters (Nina and Faizal) got me interested.
Lafangey Parindey is a fairytale with the appropriate dose of villains, witches and simplified-real-life in their own little world. The main characters have shades of grey, which make them a little more interesting than your commonplace Jack and Jill. The villain is not all out bad but he doesn't go all-out soft either.
Each of the characters get what I call, "presence of mind" dialogues - natural, use everyday language, have common-man wit in lieu of filmy-wit. Like some sudden but expected character-transitions are masked under a smart line or two - like a mom who doesn't believe in her daughter's aspirations suddenly calls her daughter phataakaa when she's successful.
Some of the details in the writing give a nice touch to the second layer of the film. With an overt statement that each character has a person to look up to who they aspire to be like, there is a covert line pointing to the fact that none of the "role models" remain the person they used to be. It's disheartening then that the climax is a major let-down. The signs do start showing post-interval, but the nosedive into blah in the last 15-minutes came as a shocker. Or was it their way of catching us off-guard :)? What was with the sudden rush to wrap it up?
Anyway, the characters engage you and that's where the film connects with you. Our hero, Nandu is played by Neil Nitin Mukesh, who could easily have passed off for a 'chocolate boy.' But, the writers recognize that this grown-up audience now needs their filmi heroes to be more than that. So, this once, the Mumbai milieu is chosen to add to Nandu's character and make him more palatable (too-sweet leads to diabetics after). And it sort-of, kind-of works. Neil has a range of expressions, which he does really well - confusion, awe, guilt, when he's keeping a secret, and a few more. Outside of this though, his face is frozen. His body doesn't move much anyways.
Also, this range fits in Nandu's character - he's a hunk from the slums, who uses his muscle for an adrenaline rush and makes some money off that too. He hasn't given his future a thought, but can go from being a boxing fighter to a bar bouncer to what his girlfriend wants him to be, apparently very swiftly. Don't get me wrong, this is not entirely illogical, or out-of -the-blue. It is gradual, and an attempt is made to indicate motivation, albeit not entirely convincing.
Under the 'not entirely convincing' headline will also be a 'Deepika Padukone in the tapori-world. Like I mentioned in the preview, the tight backbone, the long mane, the stance in general give away that she's not really a girl who lives a lousy life. But she makes up for, or let's make that - tries to make up for that with her attitude.
Her character is a strong girl who won't take 'no' for an answer even from the Almighty. Yep! A proper mainstream movie made by an ad-film maker for a leading production house has a beefy role for the lead-lady. She has her entire range of ups and downs too.
I wouldn't have imagined Deepika-Neil as a pair. Somehow, together they look like what aunties at weddings might choose to say about the marrying couple, "He doesn't suit her" or vice versa. But, mainly because of Deepika's performance, they seem connected and you want them to be with each other and live happily ever after.
The side characters are a mix. You have Kay Kay Menon entering and exiting his role as if he owns the place - the hero's self-appointed caretaker (His make-up is also awesome.) And you have the unbelievable heroine's brother with no soul and mind. Also, the second half unnecessarily shows a couple of caricatured characters.
The frames and the way they are edited make Lafangey Parindey look really slick. The music is contemporary and likable. The songs are choreographed with soul and are not the regular 1-2-3 jerks. The action, especially the bike-thrills spell - DO NOT TRY AT HOME. And the story in general is also, "NOT TRIED AT HOME" because the real world doesn't work this way. But along with the laugh-out-loud moments there is a warm, very human story inside.
So, then just like it might be considered non-conforming to dislike the new wave cinema will it be considered out-of-fashion to like Lafangey Parindey for what it is?
Ps. is it a criminal offence to have a hero wearing sunglasses that are not RayBan? #JustAsking
- meeta, a part of the audience
Thumbs up, by Prathna Tiwari, Bolly Spice : ...There is no doubt that thirty minutes into Lafangey Parindey you make up your mind that Sarkar has stepped up with this one and although not flawless it will be a major improvement to the rather disastrous Laga Chunari Mein Daag... full review
Thumbs up, by Sukanya Venkatraghavan, Filmfare : ...Deepika as the spunky Pinky is fabulous. She gives it the right ‘namak’ and you are happy to see a non-simpering normal Hindi film heroine.... full review
Thumbs up, by Saibal Chatterjee, NDTV : ...Not everything that Lafangey Parindey delivers is likely to strike the audience as convincing, but on the whole the impact of this effervescent entertainer is pretty rounded... full review
Thumbs up, by http://www.planetbollywood.com/displayReview.php?i, Planet Bollywood : ...thanks to the Director of Photography N. Naratarajan Subramanium who has done a fantastic job of painting the storyboard to life... full review
Thumbs up, by Sonia Chopra, Sify Movies : ...The characterisation is a tad wonky. You don’t quite get Nandu’s character who enjoys the fighting, is obviously drawn to the world of crime, and yet agrees to the prospect of dancing all too easily. ... full review
Thumbs up, by Janhvi Patel, StarBoxOffice : ...I expected LP to be a gangster caper but at its heart, it is an endearing tale about love, friendship, and redemption and it is very simple and straight-forward.... full review
So-So, by Noyon Jyoti Parasara, AOL INDIA : ...Pinky on the other hand is slightly more fascinating. She’s doesn’t give us any evidence as to how good a dancer for she’s never done with delivering her share of glib lines. ... full review
So-So, by Baradwaj Rangan, Blogical Conclusion, The New Sunday Express : ...And yet, despite the fussiness of his filmmaking, we remain engaged, for a while, by the simple fact that there’s more to this love story than just the mechanics of boy (Nandu) and girl (Pinky, played by Deepika Padukone) getting together... full review
So-So, by Taran Adarsh, Bollywood Hungama : ...Even if he tries very hard to get into the skin of the character, you just can't connect with him since the suave and dashing demeanor makes him look like a Harvard returned, not someone from the streets or wadis of Mumbai definitely. ... full review
So-So, by Deepa Garimella, fullhyd.com : ...While Deepika does a fine job of convincing us that Pinky's gutsy enough to not let a cruel twist of fate throw water on the fire in her belly, it's tough to imagine what keeps happening on screen.... full review
So-So, by http://www.glamsham.com/movies/reviews/20-lafangey, Glamsham.com : ...the exciting training sequences between Nandu and Pinky are the film's highlight. The chemistry between the lead pair is excellent here. ... full review
So-So, by Sarita Tanwar , MiD DAY : ...Although it is about a girl who believes she is the best skater in the world, her acts on the stage are just about good. They needed to be breathtaking... full review
Thumbs down, by Naresh Kumar Deoshi, Apun Ka Choice : ...if you are intentionally trying to adopt a style that’s not naturally yours, like stepping into a pair of sneakers that don’t fit you right, you are sure to fall with your face to the ground.... full review
Thumbs down, by Bobby Sing, Bobby Talks Cinema.com : ...LAFANGEY PARINDEY proves to be the weakest film of its entire star-cast and the director, except KK and Piyush Mishra (who ironically have only few scenes in the movie)... full review
Thumbs down, by Faiz Ullah, DearCinema : ...Pinky on the other hand is slightly more fascinating. She’s doesn’t give us any evidence as to how good a dancer for she’s never done with delivering her share of glib lines. ... full review
Thumbs down, by Deepa Deosthalee, Film Impressions : ...because the narrative stays firmly rooted in the superficiality of popular cinema of the once entertaining (now just horribly repetitive) Yashraj brand, their trials and troubles too lack the weight of any significance... full review
Thumbs down, by Rajeev Masand , IBN Live : ...Of the leads, Neil Nitin Mukesh approaches his part earnestly, and throws himself into the film's bloody fight scenes with as much intensity as he can muster.... full review
Thumbs down, by Kaveree Bamzai, india today : ...I do have a problem with a film that is so self consciously set in a chawl. From Deepika Padukone's rosebud lips spewing the foulest language to Neil Nitin Mukesh's Anglicised Marathi, it grates... full review
Thumbs down, by Mihir Fadnavis, india.com : ...It's hard to pinpoint the exact moment when it becomes clear that this lurid, steroidal 'masala entertainer' is certifiably insane (or at least a lot funnier than it means to be), but it's pretty early on... full review
Thumbs down, by Sukanya Verma, Rediff : ...Sarkar's departure from kerchief capers Parineeta, Laaga Chunari Mein Daag is a sleekly-packaged potboiler with abundant implausibility that wowed us in the 1980s but commands very little respect today... full review
Thumbs down, by Jenifer Hopfinger, The Bollywood Ticket : ...The Yash Raj world is a rosy place—the colors are brighter, life more festive, and the people more charming than they are in reality... full review
Twitter reviews for this movie are not available.
This page has additional observations, other than the ones noted in the main review.
Warning: this section has some details that could distort your experience while watching the movie. I strongly recommend reading this only after you have seen the movie or if you have decided not to see it.
Just like they say, "Nandu (Neil Nitin Mukesh) is wild, Pinky (Deepika Padukone) is blind, he is born to fight, she is born to fly, he teaches her to see, she teaches him to love" Only it has more substance than just that.