Dhaai Akshar Prem Ke (2000)
Cast: Abhishek Bachchan Aishwarya Rai
Director: Raj kanwar
Music Director: Jatin Lalit
Nutshell: another uninspired re-run of Dilwale Dulhania…..or A Walk in the Clouds
The film opens with our beautiful heroine Sahiba (Aishwarya Rai), sitting in a jhoola, feet skimming the water, with words of love in the background. She is dreaming of love, thinking of who will be the man she will fall in love with. Next scene, the hero is seen, two handguns in each hand, killing terrorists with huge explosions in the background.
This is Captain Karan (Abhishek Bachchan) of the army, just about to take two months leave to meet his beloved Nisha. Cut to song/dance routine with hero and his love interest Nisha (Sonali Bendre). On his trip back home, a girl rushes to him for shelter as goondas are after her. She has just witnessed a murder and the thugs are after her as well. Having saved her, it transpires that this dame has another problem which she seems more concerned about…not the fact that she has murderous killers after her blood but that she had lied to her family that she was married when she was not and she does not know how to face them. Well, Captain Karan decides that he should help out our damsel in distress and accompanies her to her home where he is mistaken to be her husband. No surprises here really.
The family consists of your hangovers from previous films such as Dilwale dulhaniya, hum aapke hain koun, etc etc, the bhabhis, the children, the doting grandma, the stern father. There is nothing novel here at all. Once again, not unsurprisingly, Karan tried to tell the family the truth ” main woh nahin hoon jo aap samajh rahe hain” being his most earnest and sincere effort and expecting people to understand. Well, his efforts fall on deaf ears and due to various reasons…toofans, grandmother’s stroke, (which lasts for all of one day after which she is happily dancing and singing), his desire to imbibe the love of a family as he is an orphan…he is unable to leave.
What of poor ol Nisha, pining for him? Having endeared himself to all and sundry except the stern father (Amrish Puri), he finds himself in a spot as poor Sahiba’s wretching leads everyone to believe that she is pregnant…which of course is not possible. Now the father also readily accepts Karan and breaks out into a song! Oops, so now what? He decides its now time to leave, to sneak away. Instead of helping the poor girl out, he has only made matters much worse and has dug himself into a deep hole…and her. She professes deep undying love for him which we as the audience know of through song after song in her dreams, each one duller than the other. However, Karan leaves to be with his love Nisha.
How will this triangle be resolved? Raj Kanwar’s film is another lift from a walk in the clouds, that horrendous Keanu Reeves starrer which was perfect to be made into a bollywood film. Govinda tried it in Kunwara, which was supposed to be a hilarious laughfest but wasn’t; and this one is supposed to be a lyrical and simple love story which it certainly isn’t. There is not an ounce of novelty in it and the film feels like a very pale rerun of dilwale dulhaniya and various other feelgood films that we have had in the recent past. Its so very tiring when you feel you have seen all these characters before…be it Amrish Puri reprising his dilwale role, or Anupam in his lamhe or dilwale role, or Himani shivpuri who could be from anyone of her recent releases or even Sonali playing second fiddle to Aishwarya Rai yet again. In fact, this three hour film felt more like a five hour effort…its one hell of a bore actually.
Abhishek in his third outing is fine…nothing to fault and nothing to applaud really. Aishwarya looks simply beautiful but does not inject any real feeling in her character. Once again, the fault lies with the director. The chemistry between Abhishek and Aishwarya just isn’t there. Their romance or love is shown not through well written scenes but through dream songs in desserts and the usual scenic locations in switzerland or some other foreign land. Raj Kanwar could have done much with this but he simply borrows from past films and comes up with another lacklustre and limp effort. You wont see me going back for seconds here.