By Sameer Wadekar, Bollywood Trade News Network
The title SHAADI SE PEHLE gave an impression of it being a sex comedy and Mallika's presence just strengthened the belief. But the motion got wiped off immediately after the movie starts rollin'. This ain't no sex comedy, this is an ex-comedy!
Well, read the story first. Ashish Khanna (Akshaye Khanna) and Rani (Ayesha Takia) are very much in love. Ashish suffers from hypertension and one day he misunderstands it for cancer after overhearing his doctor's (Boman Irani) conversation on the phone. Ashish is devastated and then embarks to turn nasty so that Rani starts hating him and does not have to face the suffering of his death.
Heard this story somewhere, does it ring a bell in your ears? SHAADI SE PEHLE seems obviously inspired from that frantically amusing Amol Palekar starrer MERI BIWI KI SHAADI. The filmmakers take the germ of the story and then fall into the trap of the cranky Bollywoodish masala phillum. And how? By giving it a tadka of a triangular romance by introducing the sultry dame Sania (Mallika) who is the sister of underworld don Anna (Suniel Shetty) and is crazy about Ashish. There is also this junky Rohit (Aftab) who also dotes on Rani and tries to play the fiddler. So that makes it a quadrangular love story! And yes not to forget Shayar Kanpuri (Rajpal Yadav), Ashish's idiotic friend who sees to it that everything goes fine for his friend's funeral!
The story then travels through the lanes and by-lanes of the cliched and sometimes sloppy situations and placid dialogues before coming to redicted-right-from-the-beginning happy ending. And it is helped by these slapdash cardboard characters that keep on lurking throughout without any reason.
When it comes to making a good comedy, two things become extremely important. First of all, you should not make people laugh, let them laugh! It's ok in case of the other genres where you could contrive situations and serve the purpose but you can't fake humor! Despite having veterans like Sanjay Chhel and Satish Kaushik, things here don't really work. While Chhel's dialogues are crispy in patches, they are as dull elsewhere. Now tell me for how long you can bear these lines like 'Rupa ki underwear sab pehnenge to Rupa kya pehnegi' and 'Ye gadha ghode pe kya kar raha hai', which you must have been hearing since ever! There's no innovation, no crunchy sequences, no spontaneity at all barring the initial part of the movie. The screenplay has just been devised to create funny exchanges and these guys want the audience to laugh. They succeed in some amount, but fall flat later on.
Secondly, a comedy should have the perfect casting. Actors here do their jobs accordingly, that's all I can say. Akshaye Khanna, he tries earnestly and is decent enough, that's it. Ayesha Takia looks gorgeous. Mallika does what she does best, sizzle! The others just chip in and occupy the frame. How many times is Boman Irani gonna play a doctor? And what is he doing here by the way? Wasting his talent!!! And somebody please stop this guy Rajpal Yadav. He is simply menacing here and hams as much as he could!
The music is catchy by the way. 'Ankhiyon Se Gal Kar Gayi' rocks, but the other songs just intrude. There was absolutely no need for those numbers and cause distraction from the story- flow already gone haywire.
Stuff like this we have watched a zillion times before and keep on coming every week from the Bollywood stable. So there's nothing exceptional about this flick. The makers could have made a good use of the story material, but what we get is a few petty laughs here and there. The movie sometimes slides towards sarcastic comedy, then veers to black humor and in dots bewilders towards slapstick and the end result is baffling to say the least. How many times they gonna churn out the tried-n-tested, worn out antics? This is why I call it an ex-comedy. What a mediocre follow-up by Subhash Ghai after the remarkable IQBAL.
This movie is not a compulsory watch. The movie has some moments but won't keep you engaged. The choice is yours!