Fri, 29 Apr 2011 09:15:12 GMT

Review: 'Chalo Dilli'

Chalo Dilli Review

Delhi is the 'centre of attraction' these days with movie-makers setting the premise of their films in this city. Whether it was the thoroughly enjoyable 'Band Baaja Baaraat' or the much celebrated 'No One Killed Jessica' in the recent past, both depicted the flavours of the city, while the city also had a significant role to play in those movies. Now 'Chalo Dilli', directed by Shashant Shah, talks about a journey that originates in Mumbai, travels to Jaipur and concludes in Delhi.

The moment the synopsis of a film is revealed, a Bing search helps you get to the original source of the film. It's true that 'Chalo Dilli' borrows from 'Due Date' [2010], but one can't help but draw parallels with 'Planes, Trains and Automobiles' [1987] either, which remains a benchmark for odd couples embarking on an error-prone adventure.

The basic plotline of 'Chalo Dilli' may have been derived from these two films because 'Due Date' and 'Planes, Trains and Automobiles' also depicted a chalk-and-cheese pair who is traveling from point A to point B, but 'Chalo Dilli' has been Indianized to make it different from the original films. In fact, the writer ensures that the incidents are desi and hence, different. From dhabas in the middle of the desert to camel cart journeys to the conversation with the Bengali couple in the train, it comes across as a desi film actually.

'Chalo Dilli' offers opportunity to tap the comic side of the two actors [Vinay Pathak is proficient when it comes to this genre] and even though there are a few flat moments, the film hits the right spot on several occasions. Also, this journey brings to fore the innumerous eccentricities of people in general. It's also about learning some truth about life, coming in contact with real people and real situations. That's precisely what makes the movie identifiable to the viewer.

On the flipside, the assorted characters that this couple encounters in this journey don't really contribute in making it an adventurous and thrilling ride. These characters, with the sole exception of perhaps the ticket checker and the Bengali couple they encounter in the train, are at best passable. The film gets dramatic towards the concluding moments, which seems appropriate from the writing point of view, but had it been told crisply, the impact would've been effectual.

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