Waiting for its release since last few years, though RUNNING SHAADI (earlier titled as RUNNING SHAADI.COM) is yet another light hearted romantic comedy based on Punjab and Punjabi characters following a typical format, yet it isn’t any bad or an awful movie to be honest giving its deserving due.
Having said that, it still will not make any serious dent at the box office, since nowadays the insane ticket prices charged by the multiplexes are certainly not inviting enough for the viewers to try such small, fun filled attempts moving over the much publicized biggies featuring the known Stars.
Talking about the film, it opens really well and I loved watching the first 15 minutes of the narration handled maturely. The idea of a website arranging everything for the couples willing to run away for their marriage brings in the much needed freshness enacted by a likeable cast. And one does enjoy watching a simple, light hearted, feel-good, Punjab (or Punjabi) based film till the intermission.
Unfortunately it all goes back to the routine stuff in the second half focusing on the same ‘unsaid-confused love’ seen in many of the recent films. The story development strongly makes you recall BAND BAJA BAARAAT, which also revolved around a young couple starting an innovative business project before falling in love. Moreover, moving from Amritsar to Patna, the final hour yet again features a marriage and the unplanned chaos heading towards the predictable ending without raising the excitement levels as required. However director Amit Roy and his writer Navjot Gulati still manage to deliver some fairly entertaining sequences at intervals which do not allow me to rate the film as any below average venture to be honest, enhanced by the three natural and likeable acts of Tapsee, Amit and Brijender Kala in particular.
In the technical department, where cinematography and background score remain apt, it’s the repeatedly muting of the word ‘dot com’ which keeps spoiling the spirit throughout raising many unnecessary doubts. Plus as a romantic comedy the film desperately needed some good melodious tracks widening its reach, which sadly remain missing affecting its overall impact.
Gaining both fame and respect from her performances in BABY and PINK, Tapsee Pannu delivers an adorable act here too (in a film made much before the two as it seems). And the girl simply brightens up the screen demanding a loving attention in almost every scene of hers trying a wide range of eye-catching outfits and hairstyles. Amit Sadh delivers a controlled performance in an otherwise tough role and gets a fine entertaining support from Arsh Bajwa playing the funny technical guy initiating the risky business. Among the veterans, Pankaj Jha doesn’t get enough scenes to make his presence felt but Brijender Kala once again proves himself as one of the most underrated actors of Hindi cinema as the supportive Bihari Uncle.
In all, RUNNING SHAADI certainly had much more potential in its concept requiring a better exploitation, but it still remains a decent one time watch led by the talented Tapsee Pannu along with Brijender Kala. In fact this is one of those movies which you are sure going to enjoy watching it on TV channel soon, but might not be willing to go for it in a costly multiplex.
Putting it differently, at present it’s not the films but the cost of watching them in the multiplexes, which is deciding the fate of such reasonable one time watch entertainers without any slightest of doubt. In other words, it’s an acceptable fact that almost 90-95% of the viewers will not like to go for any such film with their friends, beloveds or family members spending 250-400 per ticket making a big whole in their pocket.
BUT if they are told that the multiplexes are showing such films at just Rs.100 per ticket then at least 20-30% out of them would surely find some time to catch it in the theatre finding it well within their reach satisfying their passion for cinema.
And that’s exactly the key to get the footfall back in the theatres before it’s too late.
Rating : 2.5 / 5 (with additional points earned by both Tapsee Pannu and Brijender Kala for their appreciable acts.)
(Note : The word ‘dot com’ gets muted in the film as a famous matrimonial website took legal action against the title just a few days before the release and the makers had to remove the mention as per the court’s verdict.)