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For a while I have been searching for someone to fill up slot #4on my SlapList. The male protagonist in this film just ended that search for me. Maulick (played by Anuj Saxena) is that sanctimonous, passive aggressive guy in your college, your neighbourhood, or that Goody Two Shoes colleague you would just love to slap their prissiness out of. Or maybe that is just me.
Neha Pawar who plays the gregarious Naina Kaur is slightly tolerable but her Punjabi accent courtesy the Kajol in K3G School of Over The Top Punjabi accents starts grating on your nerves after a while and when she starts pursing her mouth to signify anger, throws hissy fits to signify she is a Petulant Punjabi any kind feelings quickly disappear.
The only likeable person in the whole film is a Biji who musters up a pretty believable accent and has a personality one can like. Pity she couldnt play most of the lead (and supporting cast).
So Naina Kaur wants to run a paratha empire and feed her ware to everyone she meets as buxom Parathey Wali Gali residents are wont to do, the earnest Maulick runs a street theatre company in the neighbourhood. Their paths cross, Naina joins his crew ...Biji soon follows. A smarmy drama festival producer offers the troupe a chance to perform at his fest. Most of the film is about the troupe preparing for a very "serious" play, the contents (or rehearsals ) of we are never privy to. Most probably because it is SERIOUS stuff and we by virtue of buying tickets for this film are for Maulick are too dumb to ever appreciate the seriousness of. We might snigger. Or ask for an item number.
And then there is a setback. Maulik goes into depression. Film goes into sepia mode.
There are flashes of redemption in the film when the camera shifts to the "liitle man about Chandni Chowk", the eccentric, the pot bellied--I wish this film could have been about the lives and loves of those quriky characters. For if I want a two minute voyeuristic glimpse into their lives I can always take the Metro down to the Parathe Wali Gali and probably get a decent paratha meal out of it too. For something tells me just like her "intermittent access" to a Punjabi accent even Naina's parathas may be a little off.
For a while I thought I should allow myself to like (and understand) MAulick's character , give him a chance to redeem himself you know, but then Naina has to coyly ask him whether his lack of a girl friend means he likes boys and he answers quickly with a NO I AM NORMAL.