Movie Review: Dolly ki Doli

January 22, 2015

(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters)

The best thing about Abhishek Dogra’s new film “Dolly ki Doli” is that it is all of 100 minutes long. Whatever flaws the script might have, whatever acting that goes haywire, goes by in such a flash that you don’t have time to dwell on it.

Sonam Kapoor plays Dolly, a sweet-faced con who is a serial runaway bride. She charms men, convinces them to marry her and then splits, looting them of everything before she goes.

Her gang is an assorted crew of other cons, all of whom play her family during the myriad weddings in which she participates. (A doli is the palanquin that the bride sits in as she is brought in to her wedding ceremony).

When Robin Singh, a police officer with a connection to Dolly’s past, gets her case, her days are numbered, but that doesn’t deter her or her gang.

Dogra starts off well, and gets the small touches right. The Haryanvi accent, the Punjabi profanity, the dominating mother, the cowering son, all are sketched out perfectly. There are laughs to be had, especially in the form of Archana Puran Singh as the loud, snooty Punjabi mother, who turns her nose up at everything and is immediately — and rightly — suspicious of Dolly and her charms.

But as Dolly, the film’s protagonist, Sonam Kapoor doesn’t quite pull it off. She is too perfectly turned out to be convincing as a rough-and-tough con-woman who doesn’t trust anyone but herself. The attempt at playing Robin Hood (demonstrated by a fleeting shot in which she feeds hungry kids at a fast food restaurant) is hurried, and the justification of her actions is unconvincing.

Nevertheless, “Dolly Ki Doli” is a breezy watch, one that is salvaged largely because it knows how to deliver smart lines and, most importantly, knows when to end.

(Editing by Robert MacMillan. Follow Shilpa on Twitter @shilpajay and Robert @bobbymacReports | This article is website-exclusive and cannot be reproduced without permission.)

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