There are times when a good product suffers if not released on time. The freshness is lost and the curiosity to watch the film fizzles out. That's precisely the case with CHORI CHORI, directed by Milan Luthria.
Ranbir [Ajay Devgan] is an architect in a Delhi firm. He hails from Shimla, from one of the most lovable, most loving families [Kamini Kaushal, Kulbhushan Kharbanda, Tiku Talsania, Smita Jaykar].
Khushi [Rani Mukherji] is a hostess in a banquet hall in Delhi. Ranbir and Khushi meet unexpectedly, but the sparks refuse to fly. But what begins is the most unexpected adventure, with them striking an even more unexpected deal.
The vagabond Khushi, an orphan, has secretly longed for her Knight in shining Armour to sweep her off her feet.
Gradually, Ajay and Rani are drawn towards each other, but there's a hitch. Ajay is confused about his feelings for her because he thinks Rani is just 'acting' her part, as per the pact.
So, what happens next? Whom does Ajay opt for eventually ï¿½ Rani or Sonali?
Although CHORI CHORI has an interesting storyline, it suffers on account of a hackneyed screenplay. In fact, a similar story was witnessed in BOLLYWOOD HOLLYWOOD not too long ago, which looked similar to the yesteryear hit DULHAN WOHI JO PIYA MAN BHAYE. A story like this may've worked a few years ago, but it holds minimal appeal in the current scenario.
The film starts off pretty well, but runs out of steam in the second half. That's mainly because too many songs have been incorporated in this half, which also come in very quick succession and seem forced in the goings-on.
From the script point of view, Rani's role is under-developed. The presence of Shashikala-Sadashiv Amrapurkar in her life and even the relationship she shares with the wedding singers, does not come across effectively.
Even Ajay's role has been penned in haste, seems like. The relationship he shares with his boss [Satish Shah] has not been developed at all. In fact, towards the latter part of the film, Rani is shown landing up at the office and impressing the boss to grant Ajay a leave ï¿½ that looks plain ridiculous.
Right through the second half, the romance between Ajay and Rani does not strike a chord. Even the climax is long-drawn and not half as impactful as one would've expected it to be.
Director Milan Luthria has handled a few sequences with flourish. But he is letdown by a script that looks implausible and far-fetched at most times. Moreover, due to the sluggish pace the film moves at, boredom sets in after a point of time.
The biggest culprit is its screenplay, which does not boast of moments that would keep the audience interest alive. In fact, it's a screenplay of convenience.
Sajid-Wajid's music is quite okay, although the placement of songs is improper. In fact, the film can easily do without a couple of songs in the second half. However, 'Chori Chori Chupke Se' is the pick of the lot. Cinematography is striking. The outdoor locales of North India appeal.
The story primarily revolves around Ajay and Rani, but it is Rani who registers a stronger impression. Even though her character is not well sketched, her performance more than makes up for the flaw. Ajay Devgan's appearance and styling gives the film a dated look. His performance is also lacklustre.
Although it is meant to be a special appearance, Sonali Bendre is present throughout the first half, but is relegated to the background in the other half ï¿½ again, a case of half-baked characterisation. Yet, she does her part efficiently.
Amongst character artistes, Kulbhushan Kharbanda and Kamini Kaushal are fair. The remaining cast has been used as mere props.
On the whole, CHORI CHORI is too ordinary a product that doesn't have much to offer in terms of content. At the box-office, it has bleak prospects.