Love stories can never go out of fashion, at least in Bollywood. KHUSHBOO, directed by Rajesh Ram Singh, tells the story of a Sikh girl and a Tamil boy, the ups and downs in their relationship, but before you draw parallels with the classic EK DUUJE KE LIYE, let's clarify that the two movies are as diverse as chalk and cheese. In terms of content as also execution.
If at all KHUSHBOO bears any uncanny resemblance, it's with JAB WE MET and also, to an extent, A WALK IN THE CLOUDS [which has been rehashed by several dream merchants in Bollywood]. The aces in KHUSHBOO include some stunning locales of North India and Adnan Sami's melodious musical score. But the problem with KHUSHBOO is that it falls prey to an uninspiring script.
Ambitious Raghu [Rishi Rehan] needs to go to Chandigarh before his posting to New York. For Raghu, career takes top priority in his life. In Chandigarh, he seems to be destined to cross path with a girl, to whom he is inadvertently drawn. But each time Pinky [Avantikka] flits away, even before he can approach her. When they do meet and get to know each other, they realize that they share a very strong bonding. And as usual Pinky once again vanishes from Raghu's life.
When they accidentally bump into each other, Pinky has one request... that he meet her family just once. For Pinky, family takes top priority in her life.
Raghu meets the big, boisterous Punjabi family, only to be drawn into the warmth of the large family. Will Raghu be able to turn his back on a loving family? Is career more important than a loving family? Raghu is in a dilemma, but not Pinky.
If the focus is on new faces, you need to be doubly sure that the casting is just right. In this case, the newcomers don't disappoint, but the writing does. To start with, the bone of contention [the lead man is obsessed with America] and the subsequent conflict [the girl insists, the new-born will be a Sikh] look lame excuses, frankly. Besides, the culmination to the story is hardly convincing.
Director Rajesh Ram Singh has handled a few sequences well, but there's not much he can do given the kabhi-garam-kabhi-naram script. Adnan Sami's compositions are first-rate and practically every song is well filmed. Cinematography is topnotch.
Rishi Rehan uses his well-toned physique to his advantage. He has the makings of a fine actor, except that he needs to control his expressions. Avantikka is a natural, a competent dancer and acts her part confidently. But she needs to take care of her makeup and styling. Ninad Kamath does well. Prem Chopra is excellent. Himani Shivpuri is effective. Chunky Pandey, Raj Babbar and Shakti Kapoor are hardly there.
On the whole, KHUSHBOO is too ordinary a fare to leave any impression whatsoever.