Banner: Dharma Productions
Producers: Hiroo Yash Johar, Karan Johar, Apoorva Mehta
Director: Shashank Khaitan
Cast: Varun Dhawan, Alia Bhatt, Sahil Vaid, Shweta Basu Prasad, Rituraj Singh, Yash Sinha, Aakanksha Singh, Gaurav Pandey, Swanand Kirkire, Gauahar Khan (s.a), Aparshakti Khurana (s.a)
Writer: Shashank Khaitan
Music: Amaal Mallik, Tanishk Bagchi, Akhil Sachdeva
It is not often that we get to watch a film that is not only entertaining but is also backed by good content. Add to that the message it carries and you have Badrinath Ki Dulhania, a full-on family entertainer with lots of fun, drama and many touching moments.
To begin with, this is a very well-made film, and complementing that is the lead pair, Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt. The promos of the film aroused much curiosity, especially since it is a sequel to Dharma Productions’ 2014 hit Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania – and guess what? This one too lives up to expectations!
The film starts in Jhansi, where we are introduced to Badrinath Bansal (Varun Dhawan). Badrinath considers himself to be one of the most eligible bachelors of Jhansi, thanks to his father’s financial standing. His father is the quintessential patriarch and makes all the decisions in the house.
At a wedding in Kota, Badri meets Vaidehi Trivedi (Alia Bhatt) and is instantly smitten by her. He proposes marriage to her but Vaidehi declines. Badri’s best friend Somdev (Sahil Vaid) then arranges their match with both the families’ consent. Vaidehi agrees to marry him but on one condition – that her elder sister too should get married. However, Vaidehi’s ambition and life’s calling makes her take a drastic decision, which affects Badri and their families. How the film unfolds forms the crux of the story.
There are many memorable and entertaining scenes that stay with you long after the credits roll. The chemistry between Badri and his friend Somdev is amazing from the word go. Among the memorable sequences is the scene where they get drunk in Singapore; when Somdev handles Badri when he gets drunk in Jhansi; and their rapport as friends. Other scenes worth a mention are when Badri talks to his brother and sister-in-law about Vaidehi; Badri trying to woo Vaidehi; and when Badri along with Somdev and Vaidehi try to look for a perfect groom for the latter’s sister.
The dialogue is very apt, which makes the film even more enjoyable. Also, the film is pacey and, when the second half begins, you find yourself trying to guess what’s going to happen next. Although several scenes in the first half lack credibility, they have been handled tactfully. We see a hero who is not ‘heroic’ in the quintessential sense of the term and a heroine who is stronger and smarter than he is. The narrative smartly steers around serious issues like dowry, girl child, gender discrimination and patriarchy.
There are many situations that make you laugh and some even touch your heart. We see our hero get beaten up but, in the end, not only does he emerge a winner but his epilogue in the climax is inspiring.
The protagonists’ love for each other and the situations they are embroiled in are convincing and the film is a light-hearted entertainer with a strong message that has been scripted beautifully in the narrative. Also, how Badri’s friend Somnath is always there for him and how Badri’s elder brother and wife support him are wonderfully captured.
Kudos to Shashank Khaitan for weaving such a heartfelt story with total conviction and a story that is relevant in today’s times. Khaitan marvellously touches upon social issues with tact, without being preachy. The film has hit music, which is a big plus. Cinematography by Neha Parti Matiyani is apt. Background music goes well with the feel of the film. Editing by Manan Sagar is crisp. Costumes and locations are apt. With a runtime of 139 minutes, the film unfolds and wraps with finesse.
Performance-wise, the chemistry between Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt’s is adorable. Dhawan carries the film spectacularly and is splendid. He is the soul of the film and delivers yet another marvellous performance. Bhatt is the show-stealer and delivers an incredible performance – again. Sahil Vaid is outstanding. Shweta Basu Prasad plays her part beautifully. Rituraj Singh plays his part with gusto. Yash Sinha is notable. Swanand Kirkire does justice to his role. Aakanksha Singh is good. Gaurav Pandey impresses. Gauhar Khan and Aparshakti Khurana in special appearances play their parts well. The other artistes show off their fine talent, even in their miniscule roles.