A brand that started the Size Zero trend and glamourized it enough with Kareena Kapoor donning the figure, Yash Raj Films have now come up with a plus size love story, Dum Lagaa Ke Haishaa where a couple is forced into mass marriage in an arranged set-up but if you are thinking that this would be a complete mushy-mushy experience like other Yash Raj movies, you will be taken in for a ride when you watch this movie.
Albeit the movie has not performed too well in theatres on its opening day but critics say that the movie could have performed better had it been the single movie to be screened yesterday. There have been other releases like Ab Tak Chappan 2 and previous week movies like Badlapur shadowing their effects on this one. The movie is set to do better as much as it spreads through word of mouth.
And you bet it will as the film is rooted in the much-adored 90s era when things were a little less complicated. Pop culture, video cassettes and Hindi film music had disseminated its virus in all homes and lives during this time. This was the time when Kumar Sanu’s soulful voice had its effect everywhere and was the rage then along with ‘Mile Sur Mera Tumhaara’ making its entry in the then trending Colour TVs.
The music of 90s is particularly played in the movie in a music library that Prem (Ayushmann Khurana) has started running owing to family pressure. He has played the role of a grown-up child who is still living under the shadow of his father, following his guidance for every big decision in his life. Prem’s music store is not doing too well and there is a big financial crunch owing to Prem’s failed attempt at studies especially English, that is overshadowing his family and it is this family pressure and penniless condition that provokes Prem to get married to heavy-weighted (85 kgs.) or rather cutely plump Sandhya (Bhumi Pednekar) who is educated and ready for a good job.
An era when we sometimes behave as narcissists and pose for selfies, where looks are all that matters, here is a love story which focuses on other factors that are most important in a relationship. Underlying the timely humour and wonderfully shot grumpy expressions of Prem are deeper concepts of married love, divorce and ego clashes in a relationship.
The mainstream Bollywood cinema while concentrates on glamorous looks and slender physique especially for actresses, we have Bhumi’s confident self who expresses herself as freely and openly as an average ordinary woman living her life daily. There is no glam quotient in this movie however, it is bound to touch hearts with its way with comedy and the way the screenplay brings out the little joys and sorrows of life that are realistic and are therefore effective in making the audience smile as well as shed tears at the same time. Here it certainly moves beyond the mawkish, manipulative and make-believe scenes that have so become a part of contemporary cinema off late.
The dialogues and music are sure to make you connect to the situation and bring a smile on your face especially when Prem’s mother and Sandhya’s mother-in-law, Alka Amin does not give you the saas-bahu melodrama playing the nosy grooves. Instead when she says, ‘Angreji Film Lagayi, Kranti aayegi bechare mein’, it is sure to make you have a hearty laugh.
Kumar Sanu makes his comeback with this movie with the song, ‘Dard Karaara’ and can be very well defined as the spirit in and of this movie as even Prem is shown to be a diehard fan of Kumar Sanu.
The mass marriage concept is another interesting part of the movie and it is even more enticing to know that while Ayushmann had still read about these kinds of marriages in certain parts of India, Bhumi did not have a clue about it.
The romance between Prem and Sandhya becomes more believable and relatable more so because of Bhumi who plays the qualified and talented school teacher with common notions of love and marriage which seem difficult to happen for real only as for Prem size is the hurdle which is why he feels embarrassed to walk with Sandya in the market, let alone any sort of physical attraction. The marital troubles augment to such a level that the couple lies on the brink of divorce. While Sandhya tries her best to attract her husband even with a silk nightie, he cannot look beyond her well-rounded figure!
Prem’s poor boy looks and the set-up of Haridwar and the scenes of Rishikesh make the movie much more authentic, especially as he looks helpless in front of his family, especially his father. However, the movie yells out predictability but the nostalgic fever that it will leave you with at the end along with the rustic effect of the characters, dialogues and the story line are something worth a watch!
After all, this is another YRF where an upcoming actor has been introduced, and this time the importance is given to acting, not glamorous looks or the vital stats of the actress! Especially for those of you who still miss the Limca ads, the rickety Bajaj scooters, this movie has the old-world charm with the narrow by-lanes and the traditional small houses alongside river Ganga that will leave you jarred and reminiscent.
Here’s a film presented by Aditya Chopra and directed by Sharat Kataria (of the fame Bheja Fry and Bheja Fry 2) that makes a ‘loser’ appear a ‘hero’.
All in all, this film is much different than the clichéd Bollywood love stories where looks are the go-to-factor for the other partner. For instance even in Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, Anushka Sharma is shown to fall in love with Shahrukh Khan only after he poses as the spikey-haired casual guy and not the simple average looking office-goer! This movie seems to be Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi in reverse as here the man rejects the woman, but there are twists and instead of Sandhya making it an issue and whining for it, she rather lets Prem have his own share of complaints and grumpiness, which adds to the hilarious part of the movie. Unconventional as it is to think of an overweight movie as one of the protagonists, it is invariably sweet yet grounded in reality – makes the whole thing appear so genuine and memorable! The film presents a situation many would relate to and some would eve fiind themselves lost in the past decade, reviving an interest in Yash Raj Films and such coming-of-age movies.
Dum Laga Ke Haisha trailer: