Customer Review

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Compatibility between the two leads transcends this average Bollywood soap opera, August 1, 2007
This review is from: Humko Deewana Kar Gaye (DVD)
Here's the set-up for HUMKO DEEWANA KAR GAYE (Love Connects): Aditya (Akshay Kumar) is a car engineer and test driver for an auto company in India. He's engaged to Sonia (Bipasha Basu), a somewhat cold, very career oriented fashion designer. Aditya, or Adi, is a sentimental fella, Sonia is eminently unromantic. After several revealing conversations, it quietly dawns on Adi that he and Sonia don't seem to want the same things in life, and he begins to have bad vibes about their impending nuptials.

After their engagement party, Adi and Sonia part ways temporarily for business reasons. She, to work in Paris; Adi, newly promoted, is reassigned to Canada. There, he meets Jia (Katrina Kaif) and is instantly smitten. The next few days or weeks, they continue to accidentally bump into each other. Eventually, they begin hanging out, and there's an obvious spark there. But Jia is herself engaged, to a wealthy, workaholic businessman who barely pays attention to her. So, Adi and Jia end up spending even more time together and, yup, they Fall in Love. But, still, both being already engaged, they try to "do the right thing." And, then, because, it would've been all too simple and practical for them to openly declare their love and break off their engagements, the script comes up with a plot contrivance to tear them apart. Still, the ending's pretty obvious and inevitable, but the getting there is predictably rife with tears, stoic suffering, crazy melodrama, and an outrageous coincidence. But, hey, it's all par for the course in Bollywood.

If you're familiar with Bollywood offerings, then there won't be anything new here for you. The story delves into Bollywood's favorite theme, that of all-consuming love versus sacrifice and obligation. HUMKO DEEWANA KAR GAYE, released in 2006, is an average soaper made better by the chemistry between Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif. You easily buy into their friendship which turns into mutual attraction which then becomes love. Half British and a model-turned-actress, Katrina Kaif is a natural beauty, graceful and unaffected. Still fairly new to the acting biz, she isn't really challenged here, acting-wise, but she holds her own with the veteran Kumar. Her Hindi lines, however, are dubbed. Apparently, people at the top had doubts about her proficiency with the language. Akshay, as Aditya, immediately gets you on his side with his easy going charisma. And he's got that wistful, heartbroken look down to a T. They make a good pair, and they're even better in their later re-teaming in 2007's Namastey London DVD. Anil Kapoor, who doesn't show up until halfway thru the film, brings his patented intensity as Jia's controlling fiance. Bipasha Basu does okay with her supporting role of Aditya's all-work-and-no-play fiancee.

The negatives? Well, with the Bollywood assembly line putting out a gazillion movies a year, originality is hard to come by. No surprise, then, that this film piggybacks NOTTING HILL in several scenes and CRASH in one scene. Also, the car rally sequence embarasses itself by inserting grainy and pretty obvious clips of racing stock footage. But, discounting the movie's climax, the most superduperovermelodramatic moment has to be when a hysterical woman bogarts a microphone on a Canadian football field in front of thousands of fans to beg her husband's forgiveness. Again, that's Bollywood. Basically, when you sit down to watch a Bollywood flick, you've got to come with the proper frame of mind and accept certain things at face value (the over-the-top dramatics; the unabashed romance; at times, the crude humor; the tendency for coincidences; and the song and dance acts). These films are definitely ballparks away from the typical and more "sophisticated" Hollywood product. But, if you get hooked, brother, you GET hooked! I buy a lot of dvds and, at this stage, half of my purchases are of the Bollywood persuasion.

By the way, there's a heapload of musical numbers here. However, most of the songs tend to blend into each other and are mostly unmemorable, and I only sat thru 'em because most featured Katrina. The more entertaining ones are "Fanah" and "For Your Eyes Only." Sad to say, but the best song may have been the briefly played tango "Santa Maria (Del Buen Ayre)" by the awesome Go Tan Project. To cap off this three-and-a-half-starred dvd, there's a ho-hum "Making Of" featurette (21 minutes long) and a deleted song in the Special Features department.

And if you do see HUMKO DEEWANA KAR GAYE and you think that Katrina and Akshay are good together, then, trust me, you'll be blown away by their sizzling chemistry in NAMASTEY LONDON.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Sep 15, 2012 7:27:01 AM PDT
Warp Girl says:
Oh this was the first time I watched a Bollywood movie I didn't like. It was devestating after watching so many I did love. To this day I can't say why I didn't like it. I liked Mr. Kumar then I didn't like him... I liked Miss Kaif and then I didn't like her... It just kept going on and on, until by the end I was left wondering, "That should have worked, why didn't it work?" I might re-watch it just to try and figure it out. I really love your reviews.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 16, 2012 1:17:49 AM PDT
H. Bala says:
I think my rating this film so highly was based on - at the time - my still being strongly influenced by how much I liked NAMASTEY LONDON. In that movie, I really, really liked the chemistry between Akshay and Katrina. If I were to review this one all over again, I probably would drop a star or two. It did plod a bit, didn't it?

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 16, 2012 6:53:21 AM PDT
Warp Girl says:
Yeah, I think I have to see Namastey London! I can't until I get some spending money though. To tell the strict honest truth, Ashkay Kumar isn't my favorite. I like him well enough, but I much prefer other actors. I find it crazy that Katrina Kaif looks completely different in her ealier movies. It's like her face changed completely as she grew up. Still she's so stunning it doesn't matter. I ADORE her in Mere Brother Ki Dulhan.

I saw a really crazy movie with Saif Ali Khan, Kareena Kapoor, and Ashkay Kumar that I think you either would love or hate, it's really nuts! It's called Tashan.
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