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 Vaah Life Ho Toh Aisi
Director :
Starring :
 Mahesh Manjrekar
 Sanjay Dutt, Shahid Kapoor, Amrita Rao, Sushasini Mulay

By Subhash K Jha Send to Friend

VAAH! LIFE HO TOH AISIThe best thing about watching this heartwarming journey back to innocence is Sanjay Dutt's dead-on (pun intended) take as Yama, the God of death

'Deadly' Dutt's Yama is yummy. He's a baby at heart who breaks into sobs when faced with human sorrow and earthly misery. He rides a Chevrolet, polishes off a bottle of whiskey and gets intimidated by a little kids who assail and admonish him.

After Munnabhai MBBS (a film that Mahesh Manjrekar repeatedly harks back to) VAAH! LIFE HO TOH AISI further examines Dutt's funny-bone… and lets the unassuming star come up with a revealing and satisfying performance.

Sure, this isn't the greatest of films. But it does mark the return to form of the over-prolific and almost burnt-out director Mahesh Manjrekar.

VAAH! LIFE HO TOH AISIThere's a certain sparkle to Manjrekar's film about a bunch of kids – orphans, nephews and sundry children of a lesser god - or shall we say, 'laser' god?

Manjrekar's brings into play a whole lot of special effects. Not all of it is of the highest order. But the film has its heart in the right place almost to the end. Large portions of the narration are just an excuse to pitch the genial Dutt against his novice protégée Shahid Kapoor. But what the hell… er, heaven!

The two actors vibe really effectively.

VAAH! LIFE HO TOH AISIIt's heartening to see Shahid hold his own against Dutt. He seems to have the right expression for every occasion. Quite a departmental store of emotions… like Sridevi once used to be.

The rest of the cast is remarkable only for the array of kids who are out for the joie-de-vivre ride. Though not as capable as a brood of charmers as the ones in Shekhar Kapoor's Mr India (a film to which this one pays a more than a passing homage) the kids make a blasting impression.

The assortments of villains tell another story. Too bombastic to be cartoonish, they create an atmosphere of ongoing pandemonium without creating a suitable aura of parody.

But the film is reasonably endearing, and more engaging than Abbas-Mustan's Tarzan The Wonder Car, the most recent film, which tried to recreate the arcadia of childhood in a villainous clasp. Manjrekar steers clear of vulgarity to evoke the child in the man.

Some of the dialogues, especially from Yama are deliciously funny. Both protagonists and the world that they inhabit are artless, wondrous and bereft of duplicity.

If only the villains let them be.

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More about Vaah Life Ho Toh Aisi
- Picture Gallery: VAAH! LIFE HO TO AISI Premiere