Movie Review: Hasee Toh Phasee
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Yet, Mathew manages to combine these elements into an unusual film that sparkles with humour and witty repartee, and despite a few bumps along the way, makes for a fun ride. The humour is reminiscent of TV sitcoms, and draws on several modern Indian pop culture references, including campy Bollywood songs and cult TV favourites like CID, to draw laughs.
At its heart, âHasee Toh Phaseeâ is about Meeta and Nikhil, who meet a few days before he is to get married to her sister. Nikhil is stressed because his fiancĂ©e wants him to be successful and rich, while he is struggling with his event management business. When Meeta — who gets mysterious phone calls from China; compulsively gulps down mysterious pills; and seems decidedly neurotic — returns home, Nikhil is asked to take care of her and ensure she doesnât ruin the wedding.
At first, he looks at Meeta (Parineeti Chopra) as a nuisance who just has to be kept at bay to ensure a stress-free wedding, but slowly, a bond develops. Alongside, the film also delves into the relationship between Meeta and her father, played endearingly by Manoj Joshi, and gives us some of the filmâs most touching moments.
Yet, the film cannot avoid the usual traps — including Meeta as the Gujarati girl in torn jeans and unmade hair who dresses up and is heavily made up for a Punjabi wedding song, in what seems completely out of character at that point. Not to mention a last-minute dash from the airport and high drama at the wedding venue.
There is also a very convenient solution for Meetaâs addiction to anti-depressant pills, where Nikhil tells her sheâs a coward and unable to face reality. For millions of people tackling depression and taking those pills, that is as offensive as it can get.
But director Mathew makes up for some flaws by adding bit characters that are memorable and cleverly etched — thereâs the wannabe cousin from Kanpur who dreams of being the next Indian Idol and has a crush on Meeta; the cranky grandmothers; and Nikhilâs father (Sharat Saxena) as a no-nonsense police officer who is suspicious of everyone.
Of the lead pair, Parineeti Chopra steals the show. There are shades of Meetaâs character that will remind you of her roles in âIshaqzaadeâ and âShuddh Desi Romanceâ, but that doesnât take away anything from her performance in âHasee Toh Phaseeâ. Her acting is unadulterated, and just a joy to watch. Sidharth Malhotra cannot match her standards, but is a huge improvement over his debut in âStudent of the Yearâ, handling the comic and emotional scenes with some confidence.
âHasee Toh Phaseeâ is an unusual romantic comedy, but for some powerhouse performances and genuinely good humour, this film is worth it.
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