Stupid Saturday – What’s Your Rashee

When I heard about this movie I really wanted to see it. Priyanka Chopra in twelve roles! What fun! Truth be told, I love Priyanka; I don’t know whether it’s because she went to highschool in Iowa, that she was in Salaam-e-Ishq, one of my first Bollywood experiences, or just that she’s really, really cute. Whatever it is, I like her.

I didn’t know anything about Harman Baweja coming into this film, except that a bunch of people think that he looks like Hrithik Roshan. Which I can sort of see. In any case, he is pretty cute.

Plot: None.

Okay, I guess at first there’s something that resembles a plot, although it’s more like a set up for a joke, but whatever. Yogesh (Harman) is a successful young man with a good job in the US. Yogesh’s parents are consulting with an astrologer about their older son Jitu and whether he will go to jail (he’s really, really in debt), the answer is no. When they ask about their younger son, Yogesh, they’re told that he will come into a lot of money if he marries on June 20th. Just then they get a call saying that Yogesh’s grandfather has just decided to give Yogesh (his favorite grandson, who never forgets his birthday) all his money when he gets married (or something). Problem solved!

So they call up Yogesh and tell him his father has had a heart-attack and good little boy that he is, he rushes home. And then they all say “JUST JOKING! Now you have to get married!” and since he is such a do-gooder (actually, I did find it weirdly endearing) he agrees. BUT he will NOT take a dowry, and he reads this book about Rashees (zodiac signs) and decides to meet just one girl of each sign. THAT is your plot. See? I told you.

This movie fails for a really obvious reason. Despite the fact that it is supposed to be a romantic comedy, THERE IS NO ROMANCE. This does cause a problem. At the end, we are as confused as Yogesh about whom he should marry because he doesn’t know anything about any of them.

Priyanka’s effort in this movie is admirable, but the almost inevitable result of one actress playing twelve roles is that they will be very caricaturish and over the top.  And then her best efforts are counteracted by the fact that we know it’s the same person, so however good it is, it’s not really going to be good enough. Furthermore the explanation for why all the girls look the same was paper thin, and I won’t even try to recreate it here, because it was totally insane. It might also have helped me if I was actually familiar with the signs of the zodiac so I knew what they were supposed to be like; as it was, I was pretty much totally bewildered the whole time.

And then there’s Harman. He was a little bland. But actually, he had pretty much nothing to work with, given the plot (where he’s sort of just a goody-goody who’ll do what he’s told) and the fact that he has to play straight-man to twelve different Priyanka characters (almost all of Priyanka’s characters are nuts of one kind or another), it’s no wonder that he comes across as bland. I wish all the best to Harman; I enjoyed him here and there throughout the movie and hope he gets some good films under his belt.

Oddly, the music was actually pretty good, although not particularly memorable A lot of times if a movie isn’t very good, then the music will be just plain awful. But the most enjoyable parts of this movie, on the whole would be the songs. Every girl got her own song, so there’s a lot of them (this may explain why there was no time for an actual plot, but whatever). Unfortunately however, no really good dancing. (I mean there was Aaja Lehraate, but that’s not the kind of dancing I look for in my Hindi films) Su Che is a lot of goofy good fun, and illustrates my point about Harman having to stand around while Priyanka acts crazy. (rest assured, that is one of her crazier characters, at least).  Jao Na and Pyaari Pyaari are pretty, if not exciting. This would be a great movie, really, if it would just have a plot, maybe one including a romance. As it is, it’s unsatisfying and not really recommended. On the other hand, it’s not awful, just pointless. And you can just watch Chehre Jo Dekhe Hai if you want to see Priyanka’s twelve characters.

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