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NAUTANKI SAALA - A remake better than the original, which provides the laughs but has nothing new in its storyline. (Review by Bobby Sing)
12 Apr, 2013 | Movie Reviews / 2013 Releases / Inspired Movies (Alphabetical) / N

Nautanki Saala

(Spoiler : The review reveals the basic storyline of the film)
If I narrate to you a film-plot, in which a person tries to re-unite a loving couple with his own efforts, but in process falls in love with the girl itself and forms a love triangle in the most clichéd form, then you would probably say, what’s new in it and walk over. Now adding to the same statement if I further inform that this is the storyline of a new Hindi film which is an official remake of a French movie from start to finish then you would surely wonder, what’s there in it to remake as we have seen the same plot being used several times in the past, in our own Hindi films based on love triangles?
The question undoubtedly seems to be logical but the truth remains that Rohan Sippy’s NAUTANKI SAALA is completely based on the plot mentioned above and at the same time is also an official remake of a French film APRES VOUS released in 2003. However the reason for buying its remake rights lies in the fact that the film exactly uses the same sequences as conceived in its original without any major changes and therefore had to be done in a purely legal way as required. Here it needs to be mentioned that the only major change made by director Rohan Sippy and his writers in their Indian version is that they have changed the ‘restaurant background’ in the original to a ‘theater background’ in order to give it a more comical touch which more or less works in the favour of the film as desired.
In short, here we have a Hindi film which has nothing new to offer in terms of storyline but has surely got few well performed & entertaining sequences which mostly impress due to their well written, witty dialogues catering purely to the urban audience. So where it might not appeal to the viewers living in the interiors and smaller centers, the film should find its takers in the cities due to an intelligent use of smart humour and an enigmatic presence of Ayushman Khurana who has visibly made a strong connection with the youth through his last year’s VICKY DONOR.
NAUTANKI SAALA begins differently with an unusual suicide sequence presented in a funny mode and then continues to provide the entertainment factor right till the interval. The hilarious one liners keep coming in on a regular basis, delivered well by its fresh start-cast and that’s what plays the main driving force in this clean comedy. Though the story doesn’t progress at a brisk pace in its entire first hour yet one doesn’t mind that as he keeps enjoying the proceedings until it all comes down to the main routine plot quite sadly. For the die-hard lovers of screen romance, the final hour of the film has one of the longest kissing scenes of Hindi Cinema, shot brilliantly with a pinch of humour. But once the kiss is over, the film drops down to all familiar paths, leading towards a usual climax unexpectedly. Hence where the first half of NS works in a superb manner, the second half tries to deliver the same for a few minutes but then makes way to a completely predictable conclusion which restricts the film to be termed as a perfect entertainer.
To say the truth, NAUTANKI SAALA entirely depends upon the youth factor, served well by its fine cast lead by the energetic Ayushman. The boy once again proves his talent when it comes to such comic roles along with the entertaining Kunaal, who plays his good for nothing unknown friend willing to commit a suicide. In the girls section, Gaelyn Mendonca shows her confidence, Pooja Salvi is just ok and Evelyn Sharma looks the most gorgeous of them all on the screen. In the supporting cast Rufy Khan provides the few laughs due to his funny name and Sanjeev Bhatt is simply terrific as the theater producer. But Abhishek Bachchan serves no purpose at all in his cameo inserted deliberately.
Musically, we have an unusual yet interesting soundtrack by multiple composers, out of which the 2 old hits ‘So Gaya Yeh Jahan’ and ‘Dhak Dhak Karne Laga’ sound good and the original tracks ‘Saadi Gali Aaja’, ‘Draamebaaz’ & ‘Sapna Mera’ stand out. Still personally I loved the song, ‘Dil Ki Toh Lag Gayi’ the most, for its catchy tune and wicked lyrics. Probably the lowest budget film from Rohan Sippy as compared to his previous ones, NAUTANKI SAALA has an eye-catching art direction and cinematography. The young director shoots it in his own inspired style from the west, which more suits the urban viewers as always. Yet the film can easily be rated as his most entertaining one till date without any doubt.
To end it with an honest confession, after watching its original I was really confused that why Rohan decided to make a remake of just an above average film only which had nothing new in the name of a plot. However now after seeing it, I must say that the director had a confident vision to use all those potential comic instances of the original in a more entertaining manner, resulting in a much better film ahead than its own basic source. And that needs to be considered as nothing short of a rare achievement made in the world of remakes. But on the other hand, I really wish Rohan had thought of a different culmination to make it even better.
Rating : 2.5 + 0.5 / 5 (Including 0.5 more only for its soundtrack)

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