Ladies vs Ricky Bahl a pretty average fare

MUMBAI: Ladies vs Ricky Bahl is one of those products from Yash Raj Films where the process of limiting the budget starts with the casting itself. The burden of drawing the audience falls on the lead pair, Ranveer Singh and Anushka Sharma, with the other three girls being little known: Dipannita Sharma, Parineeti Chopra and Aditi Sharma. For the main location you have Goa, much exploited in recent films but not so well exploited in this film.

Producer: Aditya Chopra.
Director: Maneesh Sharma.
Cast: Ranveer Singh, Anushka Sharma, Dipannita Sharma, Aditi Sharma, Parineeti Chopra.

Ranveer Singh is a conman who picks only on women, mainly playing with their emotional vulnerability. He gains the confidence of the girl he zeroes in on as well as that of her family; to them he comes across as perfect groom material. He talks the family into some attractive moneymaking proposal only for them to realise that Ranveer Singh had vanished and so had their money. In his list of victims he adds Parineeti Chopra, Aditi Sharma and Dipannita Sharma.

Parineeti Chopra finds her gym trainer Ranveer Singh very attractive and falls for him in the blink of an eye. The only daughter, she has a moneybags of a father to whom Ranveer Singh sells a bungalow in upmarket Barakhamba Road in New Delhi. While the hero takes the first flight out of Delhi, Mr Moneybags lands in police custody for breaking and entering someone‘s property. The next target is a young widow in Lucknow, Aditi Sharma, cloth merchant. Her family is impressed by the zari work cloth material he shows them. He collects a huge order against a hefty advance before the girl and her family know they have been conned.

The third victim, Dipannita Sharma, is an ambitious corporate executive busy decorating the company premises. Ranveer Singh sells her a dud MF Hussain painting. When her case is reported on a news channel, the three victims contact each other, eventually forming a brigade to play a counter con and get their monies back from Ranveer. To lure their target, they engage the services of a salesgirl from a mall, Anushka Sharma, who never lets a visitor leave without buying something from the mall.

The film starts off on a promising note and does manage to hold interest until girls descend in Goa, where Ranveer runs his own small enterprise between conning victims. When the process of Anushka Sharma luring Ranveer into her trap starts the interest starts sagging. The three girls chasing as Anushka Sharma and Ranveer Singh do their thing is like kids‘ spying game! Whatever happens during this process is predictable and lacks twists and turns or exciting moments.

With a linear script, the narration is sans challenges too; direction being just usual. Music, considering the theme, is a letdown. While there are no sad scenes, there is no trace of humour either and the dialogue is routine.
Of the performers, Parineeta Chopra scores most points, playing her typical, rich, loud Delhi Punjabi girl; she fits the character to a T Aditi Sharma is mostly underplayed, that being her part. Dipannita Sharma is okay. Anushka Sharma is her natural self, not that her role offers any challenges. As for Ranveer Singh, it is very well to describe him as charming, handsome and smooth to establish his character but tough to convince the viewer.

Ladies vs Ricky Bahl a pretty average fare.


Lanka has no entertainment value

Producer: ASA Production & Enterprises P Ltd.
Director: Maqbool Khan.
Cast: Manoj Bajpayee, Arjan Bajwa, Tia Bajpai, Yashpal Sharma, Manish Choudhary, Yatin Karyekar.

Lanka is a film about a small town real life inspired story. The real life stories such as Lanka are one off affair and are not known to catch the fancy of all cinemagoer. Usually these stories are so bizarre, that they have no entertainment value and to make such a film and expect the urban multiplex audience to accept is foolhardy.

Tia Bajpai is a medical student having come to Bijnour where her father is posted as CMO at the local hospital; Manoj Bajpayee controls the town and his word is the law here. When he sees Tia Bajpai, he wants her to be his.

Soon he takes control of Tia Bajpai and her parents‘ lives; they are literally under house arrest, being watched 24 hours by Manoj Bajpayee‘s goons and the family is at his complete mercy, helpless as he comes at whim and fulfils his urge. The third angle is added with the entry of Arjan Bajwa, whom Bajpayee loves like kid brother and for whom Manoj Bajpayee is the ultimate idol; he does what is expected of him, generally play escort to Manoj Bajpayee and do the killings for him. Having noticed the plight of Tia Bajpyee, he can‘t stay indifferent for long; he is attracted to her and decides to go against Manoj Bajpayee and help her escape. The end is on expected lines. There are side tracks of rivalries between communities which are of little interest.

The subject is dry and can be described as a documentary genre at best, providing no scope for dramatics, music or humour. Performances are routine with Manoj Bajpayee doing what he has been doing in several films earlier, Arjan Bajwa is fair while Tia Bajpai fails to involve the viewer in her plight.

There is nothing to write about for the box office prospects of Lanka since none exist.

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