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Upperstall Review



Official Site

Jhootha hi Sahi


Hindi, Comedy, Romance, 2010, Color

What if you had a secret hotline to the heart of the girl you love? If you could read her deepest thoughts, know her every emotion and manipulate her every choice. And all you had to do was lie a little; well, not that little. The kind of lie that, if she knew, would break her heart. What would you do? Would you give up your secret? Would you hang up the hotline? Or would you lie? Lie for love?

They say too many cooks spoil the broth, and when the credit titles roll naming 3 editors - one of whom is a 'consulting editor' you know something has gone wrong somewhere.

It's rare that a screenwriter (in this case the lead-actress) and director (the screenwriter's husband) of a film leave so many open-ended logic-loopholes, forced song sequences, and clumsy set pieces that a 'consulting' editor needs to be brought in after 2 editors - both with an excellent track record - seem to have failed to do their job.

The first half is there for all to see. There is not a smidgen of evidence of any smart transition between scenes (save for one Superman cape post a dialogue in regard with it), awkward gaps in between scenes, and a strange song featuring Pakhi in a costume borrowed from Cleopatra.

Once you forgive the discrepancy between the setting (uptown London) and the characters (chaste Hindi and Urdu speaking yuppies who make a lot of money running a bookstore), things do begin to fall in place in the second-half, which is a comparatively smoother ride. Still, one wonders why the idiosyncrasies that set apart Jaane Tu... Ya Jaane Na, Tyrewala's first film, (the horses, the talking portrait) are missing in this one. You can't help but think that the drivel being churned out from Karan Johar / YRF in the guise of romcoms are effortless and spot-on in comparison. Tyrewala's skid marks are all over Jhootha Hi Sahi.

The most fun parts in the film are the scenes where the ensemble assembles - be it at the bookstore, dinner table and even the song at the Indian-theme party. The humor works. There should have been more. What doesn't work is the convenience of the climax. Why Pakhi has an epiphany - like climaxes in every other Bollywood film - will remain a mystery. Also worth mentioning is that this is the most politically correct (and still witty) mainstream film in a long time. What with the enormous potential to go wrong with the Pakistanis and homosexuals abounding. Good.

Technically the film is sound, the budget being what it is. The camerawork is far superior to what we were treated to in Jaane Tu... and sound design - despite the delays caused by Rahman which pushed the film by a couple of weeks - is notable. The music is iffy and very reminiscent of the tunes in Jaane Tu.

Pakhi is the unlikely lead actress and doesn't quite fit into the Bollywood mould. One can understand audiences having difficulty coming to terms with her at first sight. But she grows into the role as the film progresses. Even though it is purely coincidental - this is also what the film is about isn't it - Love at first sound, not sight?

John Abraham's makeover works well. He actually is quite limbered up! The ensemble is fine too, except for the nonsense special appearance by Madhavan. Didn't need him and his funky beard. Who'd fall for him? At the very least Pakhi's ex should've been a super handsome hunk with a whole lot of other pluses that make the decision somewhat hard to make for her character. Alas.

All in all, the film doesn't entirely work. There were hopes from Tyrewala to better his previous film and unfortunately, JHS doesn't quite cut it.

Upperstall review by: filmbear




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