First of all let me tell you that I haven’t read Chetan Bhagat’s half girlfriend and so this review won’t be a film vs book comparison. There used to be a time when something in a Mohit Suri movie manages to strike a chord with you even when it was extremely cheesy. But in the case of Half Girlfriend, Mohit Suri repeats those clichés that he has been nurturing over the last few years and with zero depth in the writing to create a good chemistry between the main characters, Half Girlfriend is simply boring.
Madhav is this guy from Bihar who joins a college in Delhi. His English is very weak and the guy falls in love with a girl Riya, on the first day itself and he is trying to win her love. The girl restricts him from her by calling herself as his half girlfriend. The movie is basically about Madhav’s journey to convince Riya that he is her man.
Chetan Bagat’s writing is somewhat very close to the kind of melodrama we see in Mohit Suri’s films. I am guessing the book had a more detailed depiction of the equation between the two. In the case of the movie, the intensity here is zero. The movie is only 2 hours and 15 minutes long and Suri and his screenplay is in a hurry to squeeze in songs and cheesy romantic verbal diarrhea within that time limit. Madhav is behaving like a guy who broke up with a girl who was in a relationship with him for 4 or 5 years while the reality is that he just fell for her good looks. The movie then moves to social preaching, Riya’s positive influence on Madhav and all these is quite abysmal on a dramatic level. There is a sequence in the film which features Bill Gates and the visual effects aided face masked lookalike Bill gates was so bad that the actual Bill Gates might file a defamation case if he sees it.
Arjun Kapoor is struggling real hard to be that down to earth sanskari character. His eyes might look dull in most areas, but you won’t feel any sort of pain in the character he is portraying. Shraddha Kapoor looks gorgeous but similar to Arjun, we don’t get to see anything emotionally appealing here. Vikrant Massey was apparently the only good performer here who plays the quintessential opposing loving friend of the hero in every Mohit Suri film (a role Shaad Randhawa used to play in Mohit Suri movies). Talented Seema Biswas is playing the character of prejudiced mother in this movie.
Mohit Suri’s movies are known for being melodramatic and high on theatrical romantic angles. Here also he tries to achieve all those and because of the hurried screenplay nothing creates an impact on us. Most of his movies used to have at least a few one liners that sort of stays with us. The college setup and the posh backdrop and fashion sense of Riya reminded me of Rani Mukherji in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. The social commitment of Madhav is shown using mediocre scenes and the story is very easily predictable when it shifts to New York. Music is the only good thing here. Production design is disappointing and the visuals aren’t absorbing.
Half Girlfriend is unappealing and boring to the core. With lackluster performances and highly melodramatic making this movie fails miserably. BTW “Doh Gunaah Lagaan Dena Padega” type Hindi speaking foreigners still exist in Bollywood.
With lackluster performances and highly melodramatic making this movie fails miserably.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended