ApunKaChoice : Bollywood


Dharmesh DarshanAap Ki Khatir : Review
26th Aug 2006  00.30 IST
By Aparajita Ghosh  

It is good to see filmmaker Dharmesh Darshan try something different from his usual melodramatic style of storytelling. Stepping out of the rut, Darshan tries to mesh drama with light moments and comes up with a movie that is fairly watchable, but only in parts.

Aap Ki Khatir is heavily inspired from the 2005 Hollywood film 'The Wedding Date', starring Debra Messing and Dermot Mulroney. Although the basic premise of the story remains the same as the film's Hollywood counterpart, certain changes have been incorporated to make the film palatable to Indian audiences, particularly the family crowd who have a taste for Sooraj Barjatya kind of cinema.

'Aap Ki Khatir' stars Akshaye Khanna , Priyanka Chopra , Amisha Patel , Sunil Shetty , Dino Morea , Anupam Kher and Lillette Dubey .

The film does not have an extraordinary story. Still it manages to entertain in the first half and a bit of the second half. Things get heavy as the film approaches its end.

Anu (Priyanka Chopra) is on the rebound after a bitter break off from her ex boyfriend Danny (Dino Morea) for whom she still harbours some feelings. When she goes to London to attend the wedding of her stepsister Shirani (Amisha Patel) to a New York-based Gujarati businessman Kunal (Sunil Shetty), Anu plans to make Danny jealous. She knows that Danny will attend the wedding as he is a friend of Kunal.

She hires an unassuming but flamboyant Aman (Akshaye Khanna) to escort her to the wedding as her boyfriend.

Like a man eager to do his job well, Aman plays Anu's boyfriend with utmost conviction. The two go shopping, partying and doing other miscellaneous things that any two lovers indulge in.

It is in this fake romance between the two that we find light-hearted banter. On the parallel, the families of the bride and groom-to-be chip in some tongue-in-cheek hilarity. Shirani's parents (Anupam Kher and Lillete Dubey) are loud-mouthed Punjabis. Kunal's parents (Tiku Talsania and Kamini Khanna) are overexcited Gujaratis who love munching snacks and speaking twisted English.

As the movie progresses, a stark revelation puts the story on a different track. It turns out that Shirani, the bride-to-be, also had an affair with Danny whom Anu is so desperately trying to make jealous. On the other hand, Aman begins to feel romantic feelings for Anu. There is confusion, chaos and confessions.

Will Kunal accept Shirani as his wife? Does Anu continue to harbour feelings for Danny? Will Aman be able to win Anu's love? How will Kunal confront Danny?

Although the movie's story does sound interesting on paper, the treatment it has been given in the latter reels lets you down. What looks like an entertaining film in the first half become a sort of a drag in the second.

Himesh Reshammiya's songs make for melodious interludes in the story. The camera work is plain average and the cityscape of London could have been captured with more flourish.

The chemistry between Akshaye Khanna and Priyanka Chopra works only to an extent. The teasing banter between them has exuberance. But there are hardly any romantic sparks between the two. The fault for this partly lies in the script that doesn't give much meat to their bonding.

Still Akshaye Khanna keeps the audience interest from waning solely with his charming presence and good acting. Priyanka Chopra carries her role with ease. There are moments when she underplays herself (in the second half) and there are times when she goes a bit over-the-top (initial reels).

Not much histrionics are required of Amisha Patel. She has a cardboard character of a girl with blushes, overdone eyelashes and a shocking revelation to boot. Sunil Shetty doesn't get much scope except in the closing reels. Dino Morea suits his character of a suave philanderer well.

In short, 'Aap Ki Khatir' makes for just a timepass watch.

Dharmesh Darshan
Aap Ki Khatir
Akshaye Khanna
Priyanka Chopra
Amisha Patel
Sunil Shetty
Dino Morea
Anupam Kher
Lillette Dubey

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