Directed by Shaad Ali
Running Time: 2:45
Bunty Aur Babli was a standard Bollywood tale that was too long, had some serious production numbers and was just kind of there. Yet I found it entertaining, although that might have something to do with my crush on Rani Mukherjee.
Bunty a.k.a. Rakesh lives with his parents in a small town in India. He's bored but doesn't want a real job so he concocts a scheme to make a lot of money. Babli a.k.a. Vimmi also lives in a small town and she has dreams of being a supermodel. They both head to a bigger city to try and make it but both get shot down. They meet randomly at the train station and try again and fail again. Now they're just annoyed so they decide that now is the time to start taking what is theirs. They start conning people from coast to coast with bigger and bigger schemes. They become pop culture icons in the country and of course, fall in love. Hot on their heels is DCP Dashrath Singh who has a habit of cracking his neck over and over again. Will they be caught and serve time? Or will they escape and live happily ever after?
The one thing I liked about Bunty Aur Babli was that I really didn't know how it was going to end. You could assume a happy ending, but I've seen enough Bollywood films to know that sometimes the hero dies (or in this case, goes to jail) so I was never sure where it was all going to go. Granted when the ending did happen it was remarkably cheesy but hey, that's OK. The story line was interesting, kind of a take off of Bonnie & Clyde. These two seemingly nice people decide to enter a life of crime and end up having some fun. At one point they even manage to sell the Taj Mahal to a white guy which was fairly impressive. I can't say the schemes they come up with were brilliant or in fact made any sense, but everyone seemed so happy you couldn't fault them.
I believe this is the first time father and son Bachchan appeared in the same movie together. I can't say that I'm 100% sure but I think I read that somewhere. It would have been nice for that moment where they first meet up on camera to be something cool but it just happened. Then they get into a really long and boring drunken conversation that did nothing but make me wish the movie would just move along. Thankfully the scene was saved by the special appearance of Aishwarya Rai doing a dance number. And of course the entire movie had Rani Mukherjee who although didn't look her best, looked pretty damn fine and that's enough for me. Throw those two women into a movie and chances are I'm gonna like it regardless. But to be fair, while the movie had some serious mistakes, it was a fun film.
Like I said before, their schemes were at times, non-sensical and seemed to involve a lot of extras. How these people could go around and never get caught is beyond me. It's not like Rani can meld into a crowd that easily, even if she wasn't a popular actress. The movie, as always, could have lost about 30-40 minutes and still been the same film. Surprisingly, it wasn't the music that took away from it. The music wasn't half bad and I can guarantee that if you see this movie, chances are you'll be humming the theme song when you leave. Oh and make sure you stay for the credits to see Amitabh doing a lip sync of the rap version of the theme. That alone is worth the price of admission.
Oh yeah, and the big thing, I almost forgot to mention. There was a kiss! For those of you who aren't familiar with Bollywood, kissing on screen is almost unheard of. Even when Aishwarya was on Oprah she admitted she's never kissed anyone on screen because it's not done. But this movie crossed that line and had the two leads kiss each other. The reaction in the audience was pretty funny. Every Indian gasped while the white people (and those of us who watch way too many Hollywood movies) kind of chuckled at the gasping. It was a very, very simple kiss, but considering this may be the first one I've seen in a Bollywood film, it deserved some mention.
THE BOTTOM LINE
So overall, I enjoyed Bunty Aur Babli. It was lighthearted and didn't get too deep into the serious drama a lot of these movies fall into. The leads were enjoyable, the music wasn't bad and it had Rani. What more could you ask for?
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