Synopsis – An orphan boy adopts parents to impress his girlfriend
My Take – Once upon a time family dramas used to dominate the flow of Hindi releases round the year, with audiences lapping up the entertainment and emotional quotient present in such films. However, with changing times such films soon became stagnant with the occasional release here and there finding its restricted target audience.
In this latest Disney+ Hotstar release, director Abhishek Jain and co-writers Prashant Jha and Deepak Venkateshan attempt to play on our nostalgia by bringing in everything you expect from a yesteryear’s mainstream family entertainer, all the while lacing it with social commentary and enough comical situations to not alienate the modern viewers.
But while the film seems to have its heart in the right place, as it tries to convince one about creating a family bond irrespective of blood-relations, and seems to be half inspired by the ZEE5 release, 14 Phere (2021), its hackneyed treatment and lackluster execution prevents it from really going the distance.
Sure, the film is effortlessly watchable mainly due to its star-cast, who try to add gravitas to a film that doesn’t quite know which direction to follow, but in the end the disjointed narrative does nothing but leave us feeling like a witness to a witless family affair.
The story follows Dhruv (Rajkummar Rao), a successful entrepreneur, who falls madly in love with Anya (Kriti Sanon), a freelance v logger, and wants to settle down with her. Unfortunately, Anya who was left parent-less at a young age and raised by her doting uncle, Dr Sanjeev Mehra (Manu Rishi Chadha) and his aunt, Rupa (Prachi Shah), still deep down longs to cozy herself in the midst of a family with parents, something which a Dhruv cannot provide as he is an orphan.
Worried that this fact will be a deal breaker for her, with help of his best friend Shunty (Aparshakti Khurrana), Dhruv sets out to adopt a set of parents to make it appear like a complete family. First by filling up the father role by persuading Purushottam Mishra (Paresh Rawal), the owner of the dhaba were he worked at in his young age, and second by bringing in Dipti Kashyap (Ratna Pathak Shah). However, what complicates the matter is that Purushottam and Deepti have a shared history as former lovers who faced bitter opposition from her parents and couldn’t fulfill their ambition of uniting.
What follows is as predictable as one would expect it to be. The screenplay doesn’t waste much time in delving into Dhruv and Anya’s lives and shows us how love blossoms. Instead, there is a hurry to come to the central conflict as soon as possible. However, the film should have been a lot more fun.
What lacks here strongly is the base. It seems like the writers and the team were running towards the interesting part without really polishing the world around it which in the first case was meant to trigger the interesting portion. A story about an orphan who pretends to have parents in order to marry his sweetheart could have been the stuff of rip-roaring farce.
Sure, it is occasionally witty, but director Abhishek Jain seem to have opted for the occasional laugh and the frequent lump in the throat. Add to this a confused moral message and it’s clear that this romantic comedy never gets off the ground. Things even get a little monotonous towards the end, with not a single element that would stick.
Performance wise, though initially seemed miscast Rajkummar Rao ends up cake walking through his role bravely navigating through the stretches of the under-written narrative. Kriti Sanon is stuck playing the stereotypical Bollywood heroine, and manages to rise only in the emotional sequences.
Nevertheless, it is Paresh Rawal and Ratna Pathak Shah who make the film watchable. As a fake father, Paresh Rawal‘s one-liners and the timing are so balanced that it all looks improvised and not choreographed, while Ratna Pathak Shah is as good as it gets and brings an necessary edge to the proceedings.
In supporting roles, Aparshakti Khurana, Manu Rishi Chadha and Prachi Shah try to do the best with whatever they are provided. On the whole, ‘Hum Do Hamare Do’ is a routine comedy drama drowned in a routine script.
Directed – Abhishek Jain
Rated – PG
Run Time – 128 minutes