This common question is addressed to the producer [Kumar Mangat], director [Anil Devgan] and lead actors [Amita Pathak, Nakuul Mehta, Adhyayan Suman] of HAAL-E-DIL: What actually did you see in the script of this film? And the next question is for the writer [Dhiraj Ratan]: How could you pen this apology of a script? Sorry, let me alter the question: Do you know the basics of screenplay writing?
Really, if there was a 'Razzie' [it salutes the worst in movies] in Bollywood, the writer would've walked away with the statuette, stealing the march from contenders like TASHAN, JIMMY and HASTEY HASTEY.
HAAL-E-DIL suits the adage so well - Body beautiful minus soul. Filmed on some stunning locales, the film registers a strong visual impact. Add to it the popular musical score. Also, the two lead men show sparks and are sure to be noticed, irrespective of how badly this film fares at the ticket window. Sadly, the shoddy writing camouflages the positives completely. You expect to be served a sumptuous, seven-course meal, but the writer serves you a few crumbs.
All said, HAAL-E-DIL is a terrible waste of a terrific opportunity. This one, I am sure, would easily rank prominently in the 'Letdowns of 2008' when one compiles the facts as the sun sets on the year.
HAAL-E-DIL tells the story of Sanjana [Amita Pathka], for whom love is chaste and sacred. It's the story of Shekhar [Nakuul Mehta], who keeps tripping for every second girl and loves to be in the perennial state of love, not realizing that he is going to meet a girl who'll change his existence. It's the story of Rohit [Adhyayan Suman], who would fall so deep in love that resurfacing would be impossible.
Sanjana is at the crossroads of life where she has to choose between her perfect love and a perfect stranger.
Strangely, two of the three Hindi releases this week bear an uncanny resemblance to the immensely likable JAB WE MET -- HAAL-E-DIL and KHUSHBOO. In this case, the story fails to grab your attention from the very start. In fact, confusion prevails all through this misadventure, so much so that there're times when the viewer is forced to ask the person seated next to him: How did that happen? Or what was that?
The love story is completely lifeless and the train yatra is anything but enjoyable. The adventure in the jungles [where the couple bumps into a Veerappan look-alike] is equally sad. If the intention was to add a dash of thrill or adventure to the goings-on, sorry, it falls flat. Or if the intention was to raise a few laughs, sorry again, it's anything but funny.
The 7-day fast undertaken by one of the leads in the concluding reels in equally phika. Are we living in the 21st century? Why is the screen writing so regressive in Hindi movies? Prior to that, the viewer learns that one of the leads has passed away and you actually fall off your seat. Ab yeh twist kahan se aaya?
Director Anil Devgan is off the mark this time. Frankly, his RAJU CHACHA and BLACKMAIL appear as classics when compared to this one. Music is the only saving grace. Every track has been filmed on a panoramic locale and acts as an eye candy. Cinematography [Rajeev Ravi] is efficient.
Nakuul Mehta may subconsciously be inspired by SRK, but you don't mind it. In all fairness, he's very confident, a bundle of energy and knows his job well. His expressions are perfect at all times. Adhyayan Suman definitely deserved a better launch. What's he doing in this film? He has the talent, which, unfortunately, hasn't been channelized at all in this misadventure.
Amita Pathak is a fine actor, no two opinions on that. But there's a problem. She looks too plump and her makeup makes her look mature. Very frankly, she looks much better in real life than on screen.
On the whole, HAAL-E-DIL is a complete dil-breaker. This one's gonna sink at the box-office!