AJAB GAZABB LOVE | 27 October, 2012

Pooja Entertainment & Films Ltd.’s Ajab Gazabb Love (UA) is a romantic comedy. Rajveer Grewal (Jackky Bhagnani) is the son of a very rich industrialist, Yashvardhan Grewal (Darshan Jariwala), and Rashmi Grewal (Kiron Kher). He has an elder brother, Adarsh (Prageet Pandit), sister-in-law (Anuja Sachdeva) and niece (baby Ananya), all of who love Rajveer. Rajveer’s maternal cousin, Titu (Mayur Puri), also lives with them in a palatial bungalow in Bombay. Rajveer dreams of setting up a factory for making cars. He has himself designed a swanky car. The prototype is ready but one Karan Singh Chau­han from Bhopal is coming in the way of the setting up of the factory.

Rajveer falls in love with Madhuri Singh (Nidhi Subbaiah) but there’s a problem. She hates rich people and as soon as Rajveer learns of this, he pretends to be the very poor son of poor parents. As their romance grows, Madhuri asks Rajveer to take her to his home to meet his family. For fear of losing her, Rajveer convinces his mother, brother, sister-in-law and cousin to pretend to be very poor and shift into a hut for a few hours. The father is not included in the drama because he has to go to Bhopal on the day Madhuri is scheduled to come to meet the family.

It is soon revealed to the audience (not to Rajveer and his family) that Madhuri herself hails from a very rich family and has twin brothers, Karan Singh Chauhan (Arjun Rampal) and Arjun Singh Chauhan (Arjun Rampal), living in Bhopal. While in Bhopal, she tells her brothers about her boyfriend and her desire to marry him. Karan Singh asks Arjun to satisfy himself that Rajveer and his family members are genuine people. Arjun and Madhuri come to Bombay and so, Rajveer has to once again ask his family to shift to the hut. This time, his father is also made to pose like a poor man who sells bananas for a living.

Even as Arjun Singh is satisfying himself about the genuineness of the poverty-stricken family of Rajveer, Madhuri comes to know the truth about Rajveer and his family. Here, Rajveer learns that Karan Singh Chauhan, who had insulted his father by not meeting him when he (father) had gone to Bhopal for the licence to start Rajveer’s car factory, was none other than the brother of Madhuri.

What happens then? Does Madhuri forgive Rajveer for the lies he had spoken? Does Rajveer forgive Mad­huri for hiding her true identity from him? Does Yashvardhan Grewal forgive Karan Singh Chauhan? What is Rajveer’s stand?

Inspired by the Telugu film, Sermatapakai, the film has comedy as its mainstay. Mayur Puri’s screenplay could’ve been better and looks like a job of convenience at several places. While the comic scenes are entertaining and two-three scenes are simply hilarious, the romantic portions are quite dull. The film falls short of becoming a laugh riot as comic scenes come at regular intervals only, rather than continuously. Just a couple of emotional scenes touch the heart. Had the sentiments been exploited to the hilt, the family drama could’ve succeeded in drawing tears from people’s eyes. The first half an hour of the film is slow and boring. Madhuri Singh not using her full name (Madhuri Singh Chauhan) is a convenient twist so that Rajveer or his family would not be able to connect Madhuri and Karan Singh Chauhan. Equally convenient is the point that Yashvardhan Grewal never tells Rajveer about Karan Singh Chauhan. It is not as if Rajveer would be heartbroken or crestfallen or would take some extreme step if he were informed about his father’s humiliation by Karan Singh. But, obviously, the writer wanted Rajveer to learn of this only later so that it could give Rajveer a solid point for the climax. Without proper justification, these points make the screenplay un­convincing.

As far as the comedy is concerned, special mention must be made of the entire sequence when the family first shifts into the hutment colony and meets Madhuri in the hut. The scene brings the house down with laughter. Likewise, the scene in which the family, alongwith Arjun Singh and Madhuri, ‘shifts’ into the bungalow is supremely comical and evokes a lot of laughter. The banana vendor scene is funny at first and becomes emotional thereafter. Dialogues, penned by Mayur Puri, are wonderfully witty.

Jackky Bhagnani acts well and exudes the innocence needed for the character of Rajveer. His dances are truly brilliant. Nidhi Subbaiah is average. A livelier performance would’ve perked up the romance. Kiron Kher is simply outstanding and is the best performer in the film. Her comedy is just too wonderful. Arjun Rampal acts ably in the dual roles. Darshan Jariwala’s acting catches the audience’s attention. Mayur Puri has his moments. Prageet Pandit is okay as Adarsh. As his wife, Anuja Sachdeva is nice. Baby Ananya is cute. Arshad Warsi shines in the two scenes in which he comes. Amarjeet Singh, in the role of Mehta, is nice. Errol does fairly well as Rajveer’s friend. Others lend okay support.

Sanjay Gadhvi’s direction is good but his handling of the romantic scenes leaves something to be de­sired. Music (Sajid-Wajid) is appealing. The ‘Boom boom’ song is the best and is already a hit. The other songs are melodious. Lyrics (Priya Panchal and Kausar Munir) are fair. Bosco-Caesar’s choreography is first-class. Every song, including the title song in the end rolling titles, is a delight to watch. Background score (Sandeep Shirodkar) is a bit jarring in the initial reels but is good once the comedy track starts. Chirantan Das’ cinematography is eye-filling. Aparna Sud’s sets are of a good standard. Editing (Amitabh Shukla) is sharp. Production values are rich.

On the whole, Ajab Gazabb Love is entertaining in parts only and will, therefore, not reach the average mark. The dull pre-Diwali days will add to its tale of woes.

Released on 26-10-’12 at Regal (daily 1 show), Eros (daily 1 show) and other cinemas of Bombay by Pooja Entertainment & Films Ltd. Publicity: very good. Opening: below the mark. …….Also released all over. Opening was fair at only some places but weak at others.