Trailer more promising than the film
Film: Dream Girl
Writer/Director: Raaj Shaandiliyaa
Cast: Ayushman Khurana, Nushrat Bharucha, Annu Kapoor
In the year 1968 a new heroine was launched with a memorable campaign where the tag line said ‘Dream Girl comes to town’. The dream girl was Hema Malini and the film, Sapnon ka Saudagar. In 1977 the title became synonymous with the actress and a film Dream Girl was conceived featuring who else but Hema Malini.
Now almost 50 years later, a new Dream Girl arrives at thecinema halls, referred to as ‘Phone waali Pooja’ because Poojaonly meets people over the telephone.
The plot is simple, a small town boy/ Karam/ Ayushman Khurana is educated but jobless after innumerable efforts. Karam keep himself busy assisting his father at their shop and on better days enacting women parts in local dance dramasspecially Ramleela and Krishanleela where he plays Sita maiyaand Radha Rani.
This special skill to alter his voice lands him a job at the call centre where he impersonates an ex-employee of the companyPooja and chats up lonely men unable to sleep at night.
Granted that the film is a comedy and not to be taken seriously, still certain things about it make you cry and cringe. In present times when art direction is the backbone of a film it is irritating to watch the pink lit plastic set where women are caged inside the cubicles and never interact with each other. I mean not even a tea/ coffee/ lunch/ bladder break, is this normal?
A call centre is connected to all kinds of people from all over the country and outside but Pooja receives only local calls from Gokul that too from people she has interacted socially, as a result the entire exercise appears t incestuous. Also Mahie/ Nushrat Bharucha is somebody Karam has passionately pursued but post engagement he prefers to spend more time with his friend than his beloved and strangely, she never complains.
The pre climax is predictable and the climax, a disappointing anti-climax! Ayushman Khurana’s concluding scene hinting atthe alarming loneliness in modern times is far from convincing because life in small town Gokul is far too vibrant to trigger even remote isolation. Depression is a curse of the metropolis.
In my opinion Dream Girl is more about indulgence than about loneliness. I found it long, slow paced, repetitive and low in production values. The melody is engaging and the humour sporadic. I didn’t find it funny though I heard a few laughter’s around me. Some of the performances are sparkling- Vijay Raaz, his cantankerous wife and the very talented Annu Kapoor. Leading lady Nushrat Bharucha is promising but severelydeprived of an opportunity.
Ayushman Khurana is as always first rate, wish the film had the magic and lived up to the promise of the trailer.
I rate Dream Girl with 2 stars.