By Neha Bora
Dream Girl’ is the story of Karamveer, a man who possesses the ability to sound like a sweet voiced woman. So, when he is down with debt, and gets an opportunity to work in a special call centre that caters to needs of lonely(read desperate) men and also women looking for company he strikes golden ,and becomesPooja. Pooja is great at conversation and quickly becomes popular with the customers. Eventually, the clients fall in lovewith Pooja. But, soon, the lives of his many lovers (including his own father and fiancée’s brother) begin to interest and a commotion follows.
Let’s begin with the statement that Bollywood’s comedies are usually insulting to the common sense of the average person. This is also because comedy is difficult to understand as a genre in any form of art. So, Bollywood and as a result its regular audience feels that being funny is equivalent to being insulting towards anyone less powerful.
Bollywood therefore generates what we generally call ‘leave-your-brains-at-home’ comedy. But, it feels great to be part of the audience that gets to witness cinema changing in a way that a man responsible for the comedy in films like ‘Jabariya Jodi’ and stars like ‘Sudesh Lahiri’ are also writing comedies like ‘Dream Girl’.
The film isn’t free from the stereotypes and insults or from the masculine narration that we have seen in Raaj Shaandilyaa so far but it is bettercomedy.
Dialogues like the two-pronged ‘Karam hi Pooja hai’ or the Pooja azaan nikli’ generated massive laughter and not the kind where some might feel uncomfortable.
There are some really smart one-liners that enable the audience to laugh at itself in good humor.
There are surprising tributes like Anu Kapoor dressing like and alluding to the Rahul of Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, or ‘Baby Doll’ or ‘Oh La La, Oh La La’ being played in the background (both Balaji Films Productions). All of these allusions are fun to spot and don’t take away from the narrative.
The film starts creating humor out of the ever-present ‘Band’ outside Karam’s house playing out popular tunes according to the moods of the characters, somewhat like ‘Maya Memsaab’, but the film forgets about it half-way and I feel, losses an opportunity.
The Meet Bros and Abhishek Arora give us an average albumwith party songs like Jonita Gandhi and Nakash Aziz’s ‘Dil Ka Telephone’ and ‘Radhe Radhe’ by Meet Bros.
Also, thank you for not giving us an ‘item song’. ‘Dhagala Lagali’ is a high energy ‘promotional song’ and is supposed to be a replacement for the ‘Punjabi Rap’ that is the trend in Bollywood’s present times.
THE STORY is new and fresh on the surface but, the age old tale of a man going about his life in the world of other men in essence. But, yes, the story is well told!
Stories and ideas and music, etc together make a film and to recognize this fact in Bollywood, where gods are made out of celebrities, is worth noting.
Ayushmann Khurrana seems to believe in the medium of the story, the role of the director, the power of an idea, and has time and again shown an artist’s courage of being part of films that were a risk and for that alone he deserves a mention.
He is wonderful in the film, and while several actors like Ritesh Deshmukh and Govinda have been cross dressers in films before, Ayushmann Khurrana’s character isn’t a cross-dresser, nor does the film explore this idea or the idea of sexuality (despite Nidhi Bisht’s character also falling for Pooja), he is just a man with the ability to sound like a woman and he is entertaining in every bit of it.
Anu Kapoor(Karam’sfather and Pooja’s lover) is extremely funny throughout the film,
Vijay Raaz (lover no. 1) is extremely entertaining with his ‘shayari’ but his character tries to generate humor with the stereotypical idea of the ‘afflicted husband’.
Nidhi Bisht (lover no. 2) could have been very funny instead of being very loud has a comic character been written for her.
Manjot Singh gives an effortlessly funny performance. Raj Bhansali (lover no.3) and Abhishek Banerjee (lover no. 4) are a delight to watch.
Nushrat Barucha’s Mahi does nothing for the film because somehow women aren’t comic characters in Bollywood.
Watch it with friends and family and have fun! You are most likely to laugh!
FF Ratings: ****