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Upperstall Review



Official Site

Lafangey Parindey


Hindi, Action, Drama, 2010, Color

It is an unusual love story of Nandu (Neil Nitin Mukesh) and Pinky (Deepika Padukone) whose path to love is paved by friendship, grit and hope. He is wild. He is born to fight. He is One-Shot Nandu. For the raw, champion street fighter, one-shot is literally what it takes. Absolutely wild, fierce, and hungry to win, this fighter takes boxing to a new level by knocking down his opponents Blindfolded. Needless to say, One-Shot lives life on his own terms and is a local hero amongst his friends. But all that soon changes, when he meets Pinky Palkar. She is born to fly. A unique girl, a powerhouse of talent! On one hand she works at a regular, boring 9-to-5 job at a mall but on the other hand, she is a kickass dancer on skates! Strong headed, talented and fiercely ambitious these traits make up Pinky Palkar's deadly personality. Her life's ambition is only one to rise above all the 'losers' living in her locality and carve a niche for herself. She will use her talent to show the others that she can win in life. And then one horrific accident renders her blind...

Lafangey Parindey is yet another superficial offering from the big, hollow world of Bollywood. A film, which had ample scope to be a touching and feel-good love story, ultimately fails to impress as it trudges along the predictable Hindi film road. After an interesting play with the structure in the beginning, which unfortunately is never tried again and thus ends up looking like a cheap gimmick, the film simply fails to take off. It goes on instead, hardly delving beneath the surface, with few ups and downs, and plays out to its predictable end, depending too much on verbosity and dialogue in its key moments.

The introspective moments with both characters following the enormity of Deepika's accident are just not there and this robs the film of any depth whatsoever. Everything is kept simplistic and on the surface. Deepika resumes her life with an ok let's get on with it while you never feel Neil's guilt or emotional turmoil; especially since he is unable to talk about it with anyone. Fine, maybe the director did not want to delve into the characters' self pity trips but there must have been enough going through both their minds that the film simply fails to explore. Odd moments do spring up randomly in the second half from Neil's side but it is simply not enough. A pity, because the film had scope for a far more layered human drama. Maybe the makers should have seen Douglas Sirk's Magnificent Obsession (1954) and seen how beautifully Sirk handled the melodrama while making you care about its well fleshed out characters. In fact, the film doesn't make you care about the central characters and that, is its biggest flaw. Even the skating routines are choreographed as mere dance routines without incorporating the emotions of the two central characters. This causes even the finale to fall flat as the routine is totally devoid of feelings and merely a decent enough choreographed job whereas fine drama could have been created here. But the film relies on full bodied long shots here to show you that it is the lead pair skating and shows a telling lack of close ups to see what is going through their minds then. Oh, and the pause in Deepika's performance as Neil tells her not to forsake her dream seems to go on and on before they resume the routine but hey, this is a Hindi film, isn't it?

The central performances - all you can say is that Neil and Deepika are better than what they usually are, but which is also not saying much. The effort in their lingo shows. Still Neil, is less awkward than his embarrassing acts in New York and Jail last year while Deepika does go beyond her sing songy performance in Love Aaj Kal. That said, they still have miles to go as actors and key moments like Deepika reacting to being told the truth about her accident seem to be simply beyond her. The supporting cast, particularly the friends, as usual have no life of their one but one that revolves around the lead pair. Still, special mention must be made of the spunky girl playing Deepika's best friend, Tina. Piyush Mishra hams while Kay Kay Menon's special appearance fails to lift the film. However, it does remind you that he exists still.

Technicalities too fail to lift the film. The cinematography is adequate, music energetic enough without being spectacular, editing showing the odd flourish within transitions but not consistently enough. The loud background score is a big no-no and Deepika's designer wardrobes never make you feel at any stage that she is a 'Wadi' girl.

All in all, Lafangey Parindey is unable to give you that one shot knockout blow and neither is it able to fly.

Upperstall review by: Karan Bali aka TheThirdMan





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