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Sleepy aur Creepy

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a non-issue Main Aur Mrs. Khanna
a non-issue Main Aur Mrs. Khanna

The bad thing about good times is that they don’t last. But the good thing about bad times is that they don’t last either,” a morose-looking Mr. Khanna (Salman Khan) philosophises to his wife (Kareena Kapoor) at the beginning of the film and to those of us who are in the cinema hall playing Main Aur Mrs. Khanna probably because of some ominous change in planetary positions or a misconceived notion that this is some sort of a romantic comedy.

Alas, this ‘Bura Waqt’ spares no one.

Salman Khan, Sohail Khan, Bappi Lahiri and Yash Tonk in a serious film? They got to be kidding, right?

Unfortunately, no. The joke is on us.

“What? Sohail Khan is the Main of Main aur Mrs? Not Salman?” a friend shrieked in horror. Behind us, a bunch of girls couldn’t help but observe “This is too much” when an exaggerated orchestral score gives company to a teary-eyed Kareena Kapoor, left behind at the airport after Salman Khan flies out to Singapore with a mysteriously cast Dino Morea (It’s never quite explained what he’s doing in this film or maybe, his ‘bura waqt’ has forced him to take up this assignment as an Extra).

Mr. Khanna looks stoned throughout the film and it seems like Salman has also had some fun dubbing the eating noises into a serious dinner table conversation. Apparently, Sallu is some sort of a stock-broker in Melbourne who’s gone broke after causing markets to crash. Whoa!

Because of financial instability, he tries to ship his wife back to Delhi to stay with his folks and leaves for Singapore to get his career back on track. But Mrs. Khanna has other plans. She decides to stay back in Melbourne and wait for him to return.

What would the torturous Saawariya be without Ranbir Kapoor, Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Ravi K Chandran or the surreal sets or the haunting score? Main aur Mrs. Khanna makes you wish it at least followed Saawariya’s basic plot about the girl being torn and confused between the two men, one of them being Salman (as in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam earlier).

The makers would like us to believe that Aakash (Sohail) is the rebound guy except that Mrs. Khanna doesn’t see him as anything more than a friend.

Here, though she keeps leading him on, going out with him for dinners and New Year’s Eve dates in the sexiest of designerwear and has no problem sharing her bedroom with him, we are reminded that Mrs. Khanna is not confused or vulnerable for a moment. Even when she’s drunk, she can’t stop talking about her husband.

Salman is not even remotely as inaccessible as he was in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam or in Saawariya that there would be distance between him and his wife. The couple here does not see a foreign trip as separation. Yet, the makers and the support cast of this film want us to believe that they are going through turbulent times and somehow make us feel sorry for… er… creepy Aakash who’s trying to steal a married woman from her husband? Aakash tries to hook up Mr. Khanna with an item girl (Preity Zinta) and plots to make sure the couple does not share a bed.

Yes, all of this sounds funny except for the fact that everyone in the film looks like they are at a funeral.

The only good thing, like Sallu told us, was that bad times don’t last. Main Aur Mrs Khanna resolves a non-issue in less than two hours.

But yes, the two hours feel like a lifetime spent with the stoned and the creepy.

Main Aur Mrs. Khanna

Genre: Drama

Director: Prem Soni

Cast: Sohail Khan, Kareena Kapoor, Salman Khan, Bappi Lahiri, Yash Tonk

Storyline: A bartender at the airport cafe falls in love with a married woman separated from her husband and guides her through tough times

Bottomline: Tough times don’t last, tough people do. How tough are you?

SUDHISH KAMATH


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