Bollywood and culture in an emerging India
Dulha Mil Gaya: Excruciatingly bad
How long does it take you to decide whether a movie is going to appeal to you or not? It didn’t take me longer than the opening credits of Mudassar Aziz’s “Dulha Mil Gaya“.
Call me judgemental, but when you see a rather chubby Fardeen Khan attempting to woo a pretty young thing in the most half-hearted way possible and Sushmita Sen referring to everyone in sight as “daaaaahling” even before the opening credits have rolled, you cannot help but cringe.
As you settle down for what will be a very long three hours, you hope that some cinematic miracle will make this film bearable. But of course, that is hoping for too much. When your lead protagonists are named Shimmer (Sen) and Donsai (Khan), what else can you expect?
So Donsai aka Tej Dhanraj, playing perhaps the most clichéd role in Bollywood history, has an eye for the pretty ladies but an aversion to commitment and marriage.
Unfortunately, his rich industrialist father has other plans, and decrees in his will that Donsai will inherit his wealth only if he marries the daughter of his friend, a village belle in Punjab (yes, this movie is all about the clichés).
Blinded by greed, Donsai marries Samarpreet (newcomer Ishitta Sharrma) and promptly catches a flight to the Caribbean, telling her he will come back. Of course, he never does, and after singing a song in his praise and a few forlorn shots involving a Coca-Cola can (don’t even ask) Samarpreet also flies to the Caribbean to check on her husband.
In the plane, she meets Shimmer (Sushmita Sen) who decides to help Samarpreet get her philandering husband back.
Shimmer herself has an admirer in PRG or Pawan Raj Gandhi (Shah Rukh Khan in a cameo) a successful businessman who is being made to wait in the wings because Shimmer won’t give up her career and settle down (as if the two cannot go hand in hand).
“Dulha Mil Gaya” moves towards the resolution of both love stories but not before we get a lot of accented Hindi (from Sen), expressionless acting (from the whole cast, especially Fardeen Khan) and some truly awful dialogue. Watch out for the one where Samarpreet lectures Shimmer on Indian women. Awful.
Even the cameo by Shah Rukh Khan isn’t enough to save this film, although I must admit that he is welcome visual relief, especially in light of Sen’s bad make-up and Fardeen’s aforementioned chubbiness.
This is one of those films that deserve to be watched at home with friends and a few beers during a “bad movie marathon”. Avoid it in all other circumstances.