2.5 Good

Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji

There is a line in the movie spoken by Shruti Hassan ... "Your humor is good; if you can only add some sense, it will become ‘sense of humor’”! In this one line, the writer of the film has himself summed it all up.
“Dil Tau Bachha Hey Ji” has good intentions i.e. to highlight the shift in approach towards love over the generations and to present it in a light manner. The idea is ok and the film starts off quite nicely, but after the initial half an hour or so, it gets entangled in its own trap.
I’m not suggesting that it’s a very bad movie but it falls short of the expectations by quite a distance. Some of the reasons of this shortfall are…
• The screenplay suffers with a couple of substantial patches of monotony. The characters are introduced in the initial 10 minutes but nothing changes in the story after that till Shuruti arrives. Then again nothing further happens till a very long time. Similar situations unnecessarily get repeated. For example, one visit by Ajay to the gathering of the young friends could’ve been enough; there was no point in creating another similar situation. Similarly situations of Omi and Emran also keep on repeating and hence make the film drag. It should’ve been at least 20 minutes shorter.
• In my opinion, one of the biggest reasons for this film falling short, is the director’s hangover from his favorite genre. Madhur has been making films in the past, where the dialogues and situations have been straight “in our face”. It suited for that type of movies but unfortunately becomes a negative force in this supposedly “LIGHT-HEARTED” film.
• I am shocked that Madhur drew parallels of this film with those of Hrishikesh Mukherji’s. Anyone who has ever seen the cinema of that genius knows that his movies were made for the whole family. They used to be so sublime and pleasant. But Madhur’s film is actually totally opposite to that. It is basically a sex-comedy, which wraps itself under the gloss of a rom-com. I don’t know how liberal today’s audience has become, but the boldness of the movie can be quite disturbing for many who go along with their families.
• Who in the world wrote those lines of poetry for Omi? I know they were meant to be ironic, but they seriously lacked the punch.
• The songs are not that engrossing and don’t create that pleasant effect when played on the screen.
As I said earlier that it’s not a very bad film. There are a few things which are quite positive…
• The casting and performances of the main men is spot-on. Ajay, Omi and Emraan fit perfectly in their respective roles and perform wonderfully well.
• The main characters are quite realistically crafted. Especially the character of Ajay Devgan. Those of us who work in corporate culture can find multiple of such characters in our offices.
• The chemistry between the three men is excellent. Their scenes together in the house are really admirable.
• Direction is decent. Though not, by any means, near the previous standards of Madhur’s films.
• Technically, the movie is very sound. Background music, cinematography, editing are decent.
The best part of the movie was the performances…
• Ajay Devgan is just outstanding. The extent to which he restrains himself in his character is highly impressive. We can see by his expressions that he is apprehensive about falling in love with a younger girl and he is specifically brilliant in the scenes where he tries to approach her and the scenes where he feels that he is too old.
• Omi Vaidya is excellent once again. He is one talented guy for sure. In 3 idiots he made you feel disgusted with his crappy behavior and in DTBHJ he makes you adore him with his simplicity and innocence.
• Emraan Hashmi is in his comfort zone but still manages to accomplish his role with authenticity. He is noticeably good in the scenes that follow his change of attitude towards love.
• Out of the girls/women, Shazhan Padamsee is excellent. She is vibrant and rightfully enthusiastic as an intern. Shardha Das is decent, Shruti Hassan and her expressions seem dipped in cement while Tisca Chopra is brilliant.
• The supporting cast is just about ok.
Overall, DTBHJ could’ve been much better a film if Mr. Bhandarker was not that self conscious. His main intent seems to prove to the world that he can make lighthearted movies as well. We agree that he can, but he can make even better lighthearted movies if he takes them lightly and not as something to prove.
I a nutshell, it’s quite ok for a one time watch but I was expecting much more than this. For me, this is the first disappointment of the year.