Nothing about this film about young love is young. Jaded and utterly out of step with definitions and dimensions of courtship and romance in the new millennium, "Chand Sa Roshan Chehra" represents the most archaic and frozen face of Indian cinema.
What can you say about a film that begins with the juvenile little hero putting a 'mangalsutra' (symbolic wedding necklace) and some 'sindoor' (vermilion) on a girl old enough to be in the cradle?
Child marriage in a juvenile film on young love is the last thing we need. Like it or not, that is what we get here.
The young hero in "Chand Sa.." woos and wins the girl from her headstrong father with the vocal support of his own dad, played by ghazal singer Talat Aziz.
Prominent reference points from Mansoor Khan's "Qayamat Se Qayat Tak" and Aditya Chopra's "Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge" crowd the film.
And just when you begin to wonder how the baggage of romantic history can be lugged to the end of this of brain-dead balderdash, director Shahab Shamsi gets seriously ambitious: he introduces a whole track on India-Pakistan friendship when a young Pakistani girl, Firdaus, and her snarling brother come to the love-birds' rescue in the eleventh hour.
Many sections of this half-shaped ode to teenybopper romance are mawkish and ineffectual.
The Swiss backdrop only accentuates the utter vapidity of the cast composed of veterans. Himani Shivpuri plays a blonde music teacher of indeterminate origins named Miss Smith.
Rishi Kapoor's nanny Durga Khote in "Bobby" would find it hard to suppress her giggles at her character's new avatar. In the climax of "Chand Sa...", while the young lovers sing a defiant song to the girl's dad Kiran Kumar, Himani Shivpuri stands at the door making peace gestures to an audience that's long exited from this trivial teen-centric torture.
There's a whole bunch of youngsters trying to ride the waves of glorified glitches that masquerade as cinema in this faded and jaded homage to young love.
The debutant hero Samir Aftab is clearly in the wrong business. Though he's obviously trained to perform, he fails to convey the charm and screen presence of all the guitar-strumming debutantes from Rishi Kapoor in "Bobby" and Hrithik Roshan in "Kaho Na...Pyar Hai", to Sammir Dattani in "Uff...Kya Jadoo Mohabbat Hai".
Wonder why so much of the film industry's precious resources are being wasted to project and promote people who have no business dragging mainstream Hindi cinema down to the floor.
From Rishi Kapoor and Dimple Kapadia in "Bobby" to the callow young pair of this film, teenage romances sure have come to a sorry state.