Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi never really takes off. When I saw the trailers, I could see a bad film which they tried to hide (I can see the same with Barfi but I hope Im wrong). Farhad (Boman Irani), a 45 year old, is looking for love. This isnt a typical Bollywood romance like Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Hum Aapke Hain Koun and Dilwale Dhulaniya Le Jayenge. The intention is great and for the first half hour, the film seems to be going towards something that could be worth watching. But unfortunately, the screenplay is chased by the same cliches contained in the films it tries to defy.
I have no opposition to cliches, in fact I embrace them, but sometimes cliches arent well told and seem stale. This film tries to break conventions but this attempt goes only as far as setting it in the Parsi community and not choosing to tell a romance between 20 somethings. The rest of it could really be a love story about two obnoxious teenagers. Farhad has mommy issues with an *overloving* mother. The mother is wonderfully played by Daisy Irani but her character becomes downright ridiculous as the film progresses. It also doesnt help that I could see some facial resemblance between her and Farah Khan. Shirin has a comatose father. Yes, she also has daddy issues. Now you know why they never got hitched. Farhad also has a happy place which he shows Shirin because thats what happens in movies. Then there is a tank, which becomes an obstacle for their love story to flow smoothly.
The filmmaking is awkward and shoddy. Its amazing that anybody would even think of incorporating the hideous zooms that can be seen in this film on more than two occasions. It is also amazing that Bela Bhansali Sehgal was an editor before she directed this film. The editing is one of the films most glaring defects. The songs are extremely unnecessary and many moments which are supposed to be funny, just arent. It does have its share of laughs and some moments that are genuinely charming but they are outnumbered by the amount of times you cringe. I was still holding on to see whether this film could be salvaged but when the father wakes up from coma, I realized this definitely was the final straw. We dont care about the characters much. They have juvenile problems like he him not answering her phone call and not being there for her in her time of need (OMG). Yes, Boman Irani and Farah Khans casting makes them likable but after a point, I just didnt care what happens to their love life. Farah Khan, a successful choreographer and director, unfortunately isnt an actress. Boman Irani is strictly okay and has already played a Parsi better this year.
I love cliches. I love unconventional stories too, but I love a good film more. An example of a good film that similarly wished to break conventions and also had a love story was Vicky Donor. It had clichs too but since they were in a good movie, I didnt mind them at all. The bar for films that arent typically Bollywood is being raised every year, anything below that would seem like a mere trifle. Yes, we could appreciate the effort but thats not what we are here to appreciate. It is the film, the final product that we are supposed to judge. This final product just isnt a good one. I wouldnt say Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi is unwatchable but it isnt worth watching either.