Movie Review: Shudh Desi Romance

Shudh Desi Romance is a confusing tale of conflicting emotions. It’s a tale of commitment (read marriage). It’s also a tale of wanting to be in love, of being in love and of feeling the agony after being dumped.

The commentary in-between by the principle characters is fine, but the beginning with a comment from Raghu (Sushant Singh Rajput) is just not happening. It confuses instead of giving clarity to the proceedings.

Add to it the ‘convenient scripting’ of not having any parents around, makes the film lose its voice of reason. Be it of Raghu, Tara (Vaani Kapoor) or Gayatri (Parineeti Chopra). All we are left with is the conviction of the trio in their 20s along with Rishi Kapoor, who plays the elder, with his wise views.

Given the initial hiccup of Raghu’s commentary, the film moves steadily to a point to when the groom experiences ‘cold feet’ just before his pheras. He gets a taste of his own medicine a few weeks later. But when he encounters the one who he left in the lurch in the first place, things take a sweet turn.

The wooing, the waiting, the anxiety and the final joy of acceptance, is very well captured by director Maneesh Sharma.

Sharma gets his three pivotal characters to emote well in their respective roles. There’s Sushant, the confusing man, torn between wanting to marry and needing his freedom; Gayatri, the much-dated, outgoing, outspoken girl and Tara, willing to pursue her heart.

The neat twists and turns between the love-triangle are deftly handled. But what yanks this film down is the manner in which it just goes on and on, never stopping, even after a point.

The point is lost, and it becomes a tiresome endeavor.

Sushant once again, after Kai Po Che, displays his talent. Parineeti as the bindaas babe gets quite predictable towards the end. Her character loses its sting. Vaani Kapoor who makes her debut has the meatier role and she does full justice to Tara.

What brings life to her role is the zest with which she approaches it. Vaani infuses so much clarity in her approach that hers is the character that stands out and who your heart reaches out to. She makes it larger-than-life. Adorable. Add to it her height and soft features; her casting is perfect.

SDS could have been an interesting off-beat movie had the length been taken into consideration and also the expending of emotions. Sharma expects the viewer to be wooed. But a human has just that much of emotion that can be disbursed, even in a theatre.

A good attempt at looking at romance from a ‘confused perspective’!

Rating: 2.5 / 5

Martin D’Souza

This first appeared on on September 06, 2013

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