thoda pyaar thoda magic poster

thoda pyaar thoda magic

wogma rating: Watch but no rush (?) - No kids for company? Skip it!

quick review:

Though I have huge complaints in most departments, I can't deny that it's perfect packaging for kids in the 3-12 age group. With hardly any "sad" moments, the characters are mostly colorful and chirpy. But, given my reservations, should I actually encourage my kids to watch this when not too long ago Taare Zameen Par was around? Oh, why not? There's enough room for everybody.

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Director: Kunal Kohli
Running time: 130 minutes
Genres: Kids
More Movie Info

thoda pyaar thoda magic is a crash course in moral science for second graders and below. And I'm pretty sure this target audience is going to thoroughly enjoy the lesson because it has song and dance, cartoons and naughtiness. So, parents can sit happy, because kids are taught animal rights, civic sense, love over war, forgiveness, importance of bonding over blood relations, being both a graceful winner and loser, religious tolerance all in a little over two hours. And I'm pretty sure there must be a couple I missed out on.

You know what this means for the adults, right? One hell of a sappy movie! Over-idealistic to the hilt, and indigestibly sweet. I doubt even songs with underwater shots of a bikini-clad Ameesha Patel can compensate for that. In fact, that's a very high price to pay for tolerating the shrill character she plays. I know-I know, that's what the character demands, yada, yada.

But, it hurts to watch the same excuse being used for Saif Ali Khan. He wears one sullen look throughout the movie despite being capable of very varied range of expressions. True, his character is very somber. But, the man just couldn't cry or make me feel for him in emotional scenes. Of course, blame is equally apportioned between his talent and the way the character develops. The transformation from aloofness to bonding, from long silences to talking his heart out is a little too quick.

Is it just me or does Rani Mukherjee really look and feel almost the same in most of her movies? It’s not like she isn't trying out different roles. Yet, somehow today while watching the movie I got this feeling of "been there, seen that". Maybe it has something to do with that extra layer of make-up they find necessary to apply to make her look fairer. Anyhow, something was amiss and everyone involved just felt like they were going through the motions.

Also, while watching the movie today, I suddenly realized how my kids idolize RV and Shona, the characters Saif Ali Khan and Rani Mukherjee play in Ta Ra Rum Pum. I can so visualize them now idolizing Ranbir and Geeta after watching this one.

Does that mean when they grow up they are going to say, "we grew up watching Saif or Rani who were in movies for kids like us" just like we say today, "we grew up watching Al Pacino or Amitabh Bachchan who made us wanna be like them." Scary, eh? If that's the onus they carry, they have to get better than this, because they are so capable of doing it.

I digress. Coming back to the movie at hand, the dialogues and situations are pretty plain given that it's supposed to be about four really naughty kids. And the children enacting these roles are not super-adorable either. In a way it's nice to see regular kids playing regular kids. And it's better to have them do nothing compared to having them do the same old tricks that kids pull to harass adults. But that also means nothing really exciting is happening. Although some of the tributes given to various movies from yesteryears are cute.

Also, the usual melodious and lively number from Kunal Kohli movies is missing here. Although I loved the way all of them were visualized. The choreography was bare minimum and the overall effect used was charming.

The main problem though is we are in touch with a lot more cinema - Indian and foreign - compared to the generations before us ever were. So, obviously after this kind of exposure, it would be really difficult to spot something 'new' in terms of animation and special effects. The onus then completely lies in creatively utilizing these effects. And that the thoda pyaar thoda magic team manages to put together well. Yeah, things can appear and disappear, and inanimate stuff can dance, but how and when they do it is what counts, and that works pretty well here.

The question remains - why don't we have movies that kids and adults can enjoy together?

- meeta, a part of the audience

20 reviewers(?) - 9 yays 5 so-so 6 nays

Warning: clicking on "full review" will take you to an external website that could contain spoilers.

Thumbs up, by Naresh Kumar Deoshi, Apun Ka Choice : ...the tear-jerking scenes in TPTM don’t pinch you like other run-of-the-mill sob tales... full review

Thumbs up, by Gaurav Sharma, Bollywood Mantra : ...To extract acting from the four children is a mammoth task but Kunal through his frankly nature brought out the desired work from them.... full review

Thumbs up, by Taran Adarsh, IndiaFM : is a letdown, barring just one track, 'Pyaar Ke Liye'.... full review

Thumbs up, by Renuka Vyavahare, indiatimes : ...The climax of the film could have been more effective but that doesn’t take away anything from the movie.... full review

Thumbs up, by Janhvi Patel, : ...In fact Rani and Saif's role although central to the film would probably fall in the supporting cast role... full review

Thumbs up, Movie Talkies : ...Ameesha turns in a superb performance in the cameo as Mallika.... full review

Thumbs up, by Lidia Ostepeev, Planet Bollywood : ...Perhaps the necessity of using expensive LA locations to maximum effect has contributed to an imbalance because the film seems to lose its focus.... full review

Thumbs up, by Nikhat Kazmi, Times of India : ...Saif's good, Rani's commendable, but the show stealers are the babalog... full review

So-So, by Fatema H Kagalwala, Business of Cinema : ...employs every cliche in the telling a story that has been done and redone in various forms across the world.... full review

So-So, by Martin D'souza, : ...this film is based on kids, and it cuts across all age groups.... full review

So-So, by Rajeev Masand, IBN Live : ...Simplistic in its premise and basic in its treatment, Thoda Pyaar Thoda Magic is what you could call a 'by-the-book' children's film.... full review

So-So, by Hanumant Bhansali, Radio Sargam : ...Saif Ali Khan is a misfit for this role.... full review

So-So, by Raja Sen, Rediff : ...a serviceable children's film, with excellent special effects used haphazardly... full review

Thumbs down, by Baradwaj Rangan, Blogical Conclusion, The New Sunday Express : ...And all the real bring-out-the-handkerchief moments are inexplicably tossed off like afterthoughts.... full review

Thumbs down, by Khalid Mohamed, Hindustan Times : ...Why did the tempo drag so much that you nearly fell asleep on the shoulder of a stranger in the next seat?... full review

Thumbs down, by Mayank Shekhar, NDTV : ...The humour is so forced at least I didn't find myself laughing at any moment.... full review

Thumbs down, : ...Zyada Garbage, Zero Magic... full review

Thumbs down, by Sonia Chopra, Sify Movies : ...what redeems the film is its sparkling performances.... full review

Thumbs down, by Kavita Ogale, Times Now : ...unexciting & rather shamefully uncreative piece of work... full review

Twitter reviews for this movie are not available.

1 readers - 0 yays 1 so-so 0 nays

So-So, by heeltastic : 89

This page has additional observations, other than the ones noted in the main review.

Plot Summary

Ranbir (Saif Ali Khan) lands up in a situation where he is left in charge of four notorious kids. God, wants things to work out and sends Geeta, an angel (Rani Mukherjee) to help things along.

Yeah, it's a mish-mash of all movies where kids are imposed on someone and there is a guardian angel who takes them through, here it is literally so! Hum Hai Rahi Pyaar Ke, Sound of Music, Mr. India, Bramhachari, to name a few. Also, Saif's character reminded me a lot of Shammi Kapoor's character in Junglee.

Just a curiosity: Why was "Harry met Sally" chosen as the poster to be put up in the penultimate sequence? Was that a tribute to where the director's earlier movie, Hum Tum was taken from?

What Worked

  • The way Ranbir's character was established without a single dialogue, just through visuals while the opening credits were being played.
  • The special effects of God creating birds and clouds, cycling on the rainbow, angel Geeta playing with clouds.
  • The special effects in the museum. Especially with Gandhiji and the war scene ones.
  • The shot just before the interval, where Ranbir's reflection is in between the photos of the children on the computer screen. It might as well have been a very well processed photo set-up as the desktop background of the computer.
  • Picturization of "Lazy Lamhe", the special effects were both cute and creative.
  • Though the tributes were put together abruptly, they were cute. They covered everything from Sholay, Mera Naam Joker, Gaddar, Padosan, Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi, Liar Liar.
  • A typical Bollywood dance right infront with Universal Studios in the background - made me laugh!

What did not

Note: This section simply lists the things that I did not like in this movie. This is not the overall impression about this movie. Please read the full review here

  • How did they become angels if they are trying to pull another angel (Geeta) down?
  • I had a basic problem with the judge imposing the kids on Ranbir. What if he treated the kids badly? The judge would know only after 3 months when the damage would already be done. Or was the judge pretty confident that Ranbir would take care of the kids well? I know-I know, don't think, go with the flow...
  • The lighting on the swimming pool at night.
  • No "non-uniform" dress to school on her birthday! How sad! And why was the shower running water in the background throughout that scene in the bathroom?
  • Is that how Ranbir enter his house every day, stealthily?
  • Ranbir's monitor conked off, right? Why was he worried about his files?!
  • Why was the little girl standing outside the office when the computer was getting repaired?
  • How come none of them are wearing seat belts in the car in Los Angeles and San Diego!! In fact, I'd think the 5 year old would need to be in a booster seat!
  • The lip sync was pretty bad in the song shot in Universal Studios.


This section lists things that I think are not important to the overall impact of the movie. In most cases, it could be explained away by something like, "we noticed the glitch after the scene was shot and there were schedule/budget issues and thus we could not re-shoot it". I like giving the makers the benefit of doubt, but I am amused nevertheless. Hopefully, they will tickle you too.

  • Uh...Ranbir was writing notes with pen and paper from something on his computer!
  • Why is God the only male in heaven, no men-angels? No men reach heaven? ;)

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: A car accident at the beginning of the movie, nothing after that.
  • Sexual content: One suggestive song at a pool side party, with underwater sensualism, etc.
  • Concept and general look & feel: Its absolutely for kids. Refer review for details.

thoda pyaar thoda magic - Cast, crew, links

Background Score:
Action Choreography:
Costume Designer:
Running time:
130 minutes

Comments (9)

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thoda pyaar thoda magic - review...

Though I have huge complaints in most departments, I can't deny that it's perfect packaging for kids in the 3-12 age group. With hardly any "sad" moments, the characters are mostly colorful and chirpy. But, given my reservations, should I actually ...

Yash Raj is either giving cliched stuff or disappointing stuff. It is turning out to be the worst movie banner.

This is a very good movie to watch.

After a long time we scope to see the hit duo again. As i am a huge fan of Rani,I will see the movie on week days.

nice review...interesting reading....go through this hindi film blog...

Meetu, you gave perfect ratings. I am surprised by reading comments, who like this movie. I have also doubt about their age of mind.

JJ, I watched TPTM. It was fun, yet lacked a whole lot in the details of the story and character development. I thoroughly enjoyed the way the special effects were used.

Hope your wife enjoyed the movie, Ashish. I think it would make a good "feel happy" movie for a pregnant lady. Wish you luck with everything!

Sorry Champu, Thodi life thoda magic is not playing in any of the multiplexes in my city. I wanted to watch and review it.

Glad our views matched this time, Rahi. I can understand why people like the movie. It is light, it is clean and the special effects are cute.

[...] Though I have huge complaints in most departments, I can’t deny that it’s perfect packaging for kids in the 3-12 age group. With hardly any “sad” moments, the characters are mostly colorful and chirpy. But, given my reservations, should I actually encourage my kids to watch this when not too long ago Taare Zameen Par was around? Oh, why not? There’s enough room for everybody. Rating: Wait for video release - no kids for company? Skip it! Read remaining review on [...]

atanu - :)

You and I, Muzammil Markande, the audience...

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