STARRING: RAJKUMAR RAO, AYUSHMAN KHURANA, KRITI SANON, PANKAJ TRIPATHI, SEEMA BHARGAVA
DIRECTOR: ASHWINI IYER TIWARI
A romantic comedy with three principle characters. Two boys and a girl. On the face of it Bareily ki Barfi looks like just another dime a dozen rom-coms which Bollywood can’t seem to stop dishing out. However, BKB has a lot to offer and may not leave you stunned but keeps you adequately entertained through its runtime.
After the stupendous success of Dangal, Nitesh Tiwari dons the hat of a writer along with the team for his wife’s directorial venture. The attempt to do something fresh and novel is clearly seen in the work of Tiwari and his team. For the most part they are also successful but the final product is patchy and works sporadically on the script level.
The main issue lies with the story. It clings on to a wafer-thin plot and there are many instances when the film takes too many logical leaps which gives the impression of the film stretching aimlessly. Especially, in the first half where after a feverish twenty minutes the story just refuses to budge. The second half also works intermittently but meanders towards the climax and the audiences start to get restless. The writing cannot keep up the pace and there are huge chunks where the pace slackens considerably.
Despite all the flaws in the writing it is hard to dislike this film. And the credit for this also largely goes to the writers. The reason for this is the enjoyable characters that they have created and the milieu they set it in. Nitesh Tiwari knows the lingo and setting of the small towns too well and this can be seen in the film. They have got the setting and the feel of the small town bang on. In fact, the ancillary characters are at times more interesting than the lead and they are mainstay of the film.
Director Ashwini Iyer Tiwari recreates the same magic with her execution as she had with her debut in Nil Battey Sannata. There is an unassuming quality to the film which makes it extremely pleasing. The old world charm is alluring and transports you into the character’s world. She presents the story without any frills and there are many endearing moments which win your heart over. Her brilliance at creating sweet moments can be seen in scenes between the family especially the father and daughter also when Pankaj Tripathi talks alone to the fun. Ashwini knows the craft well and she could have done wonders with a better written film.
Another major reason the film works is the almost perfect casting. Every actor fits the bill and is just perfect. The simplicity of the performances takes the film to another height.
Pankaj Tripathi and Seema Bhargava as the crazy parents are just lovely. They are hilarious and endearing. Chirag’s best friend also has some hilarious moments on screen and he does full justice to the role. Kriti Sanon and Ayushhman Khurana are terrific as the small town lovers. Their chemistry is cute and they impress. Rajkumar Rao is the best thing in the film. one wishes that he would have enjoyed more screen time in the first half. The energy and fun rises every time he is on screen. The transition he showcases is beyond brilliant and he is the true star of the movie.
The music is fun and suits the peppiness of the film.
Bareily Ki Barfi is a film you will not remember for the longest time but while you are watching it, you will have a smile on the face and that is the intention of the film and sometimes that is good enough.