‘Pyaar Ka Punchnama 2:’ Fun all the way

Ideas are at premium and a safe way is to cash in on brand equity. Pyaar Ka Punchnama was a reasonable earner in 2011. What better than to en-cash the equity and hence Pyaar Ka Punchnama 2 follows the prequel almost to the T.

The story, as such, follows the same lines. Three friends suckered by three girls. They are desperate for dates, company, sex and love; love comes last though they are foolish enough to think they are in love when they do find their respective girlfriends. 

Kartik Aryan, Sunny Singh and Omkar Kapoor are roomies. They share a flat in Delhi, eat together, drink together and dream of girls together. All three are stag. They are thicker than brothers in that they can take each other for granted, whoever earns more picks up all the tabs and there is no accounting or sharing of cash spent; all they share is bonhomie. 

Soon enough, their desire for girlfriends comes true. All three find one each. All three girls represent different mind-sets. Kartik is with Nushrat Bharucha (both being the only common factor from the earlierPKP), Omkar gets Ishita Raj while Sunny ends up with Sonalli Sehgal. 

The three men, deprived of romance and sex, go all out to woo their girls and, thanks to their blind love and desperateness, they trust the girls immensely while the girls use their weakness to exploit them. Not all three get in return what they had dreamt of.

Kartik is head over heels with Nushrat. She is game for everything, sex included, though she is too finicky, her every question, which is answered by him leads to a counter question from her. Also, she is still in love with her ex-boyfriend from Chandigarh with whom she sleeps around even while professing her true and total love for Kartik. 

Sunny and Priyanka are dating. He hopes to marry her but ends up becoming an errand boy for her father and mother, Sharat Saxena and Mona Ambegaonkar. She is the chaste kind who won’t sleep before marriage. She does not, however, have the guts to tell her father she loves Sunny. Priyanka’s father is looking for a groom for her and Sunny even ends up escorting her to her meetings with her grooms to be. 

Omkar’s girlfriend, Ishita is game for everything Omkar would desire in a woman. She pretends to be dignified always ready to pay her own share of an outing. Soon, having established herself as a self-sufficient and self-respecting girl, she gradually starts milking Omkar even talking him into giving her an add-on credit card and open a joint bank account where he deposits 20 per cent of his Rs 3 lakh salary against 20 per cent of her Rs 20,000 salary.

The rest of the film follows the earlier version as the boys realise what they have got into. Establish the guilt of each of their partner and want out.

The film has nothing new for those who have seen its earlier version since it adheres mainly to the same sequence of events. Yet, what works is some witty lines and its raw youth appeal. The young ones who would want to get in to and out of affairs; sex being the aim. The film has some fun moments and some dull ones. However, you don’t come out cursing it. Direction is in keeping with the theme. Music is soothing as it comes mostly in small doses. What helps it is the visuals since it has been shot at Pattaya while taking liberty to shift to UAE for a song or two. 

While the acting is generally competent, the three boys do better. Sunny tops the list with equal contribution from Kartik and Omkar. Kartik has his minutes of glory when he delivers a long monologue on girls. Ishita as a scrounging girlfriend to Omkar is best among girls with Nushrat is close on her heels. Priyanka is fine too. Sharat is in his element while Mona has little to make an impact with. 

Pyaar Ka Punchnama 2 enjoys the brand equity. The film has opened to very good response despite Navratri and Ram Leela season and should turn out to be a minor hit.

Producer: Abhishek Pathak

Director: Luv Ranjan

Cast: Kartik Aaryan, Nushrat Bharucha, Sunny Singh, Sonalli Sehgall, Ishita Raj, Omkar Kapoor

‘Wedding Pullav:’ Unappetising fare, served cold

Wedding Pullav is loosely based on the 1997 Hollywood movie, My Best Friend’s Wedding. This is also the launch pad for Film & Television Institute of India (FTII) alumni and Shashi and Anu Ranjan’s daughter Anushka Ranjan. When a girl is to be launched, romantic comedy would seem like a safe bet. Hence, ready to serve inspiration from Hollywood.

Diganth Manchale is getting engaged to Sonalli Sehgal with who he thinks he is in love for, after all, she is the one who convinced him to pursue a course in MBA, got him a job in her dad, Parmeet Sethi’s company where he designs motorbikes! One would think an IIT grad would be better suited for such a job! But, an MBA is the flavour of the season.

While there are minutes left for the mahurat for the engagement ceremony, Diganth is anxious because there is no way he can proceed unless his best friend since childhood, Anushka, does not arrive. Anushka and Diganth had a tiff four years ago after which she had left in a huff for London. So what makes her come to his engagement? No script is ever all perfect. The engagement is done with and when it comes to wedding time, the families concerned shift to Pattaya where the ceremony will take place.  

Anushka makes a grand entry with a band in tow. She is tomboyish and her usual dress code is casuals, jeans mostly and that is what she wears at the engagement, too. For, if she dresses up as a glam girl, love happens. Which does when she ‘dresses to kill’ as she plans to go receive her boyfriend from London, Karan Grover. 

Since Anushka and Diganth are best buddies, it is suggested that both the couples, Diganth and Sonalli as well as Anushka and Karan marry at the same venue back to back. And so, Karan arrives in Pattaya. The presence of another man in Anushka’s life sort of makes Diganth uncomfortable and, soon, he realises he loves Anushka and not Sonalli. 

Even as Diganth gets drawn to Anushka more with every passing moment, he is committed to Sonalli and her father’s millions as well as his career. Also in attendance at the venue in Pattaya are his three friends, Anushka’s relatives Himani Shivpuri and grandma and, of course, his parents, Satish Kaushik and Upasana Singh. They all can see that Diganth actually loves Anushka but is marrying Sonalli. 

So there are some melodramatic moments, which actually seem like hours to slow down the pace of the narration till Diganth realises and gathers enough courage to open his mind while just about everybody else knew who he loved including his bride to be, Sonalli and Anushka’s groom to be, Karan. 

It is time to sum up things; the wedding rituals have started when Diganth decides to walk out of the ceremony and go searching for Anushka. Of course, Jai is very much there to complete the matchmaking. Love triumphs and hero and heroine get each other. QED. 

Though inspired from a hit Hollywood film, the film lacks on reworking the script. The direction is just passable while the editing needed to be a bit crisper. For a love story, the music is lacking. Dialogue is not much either. Anushka is a sort of photoshop version of Juhi Chawla and few more though, eventually, fairly charming. Diganth needs getting used to and does not appeal when in mug shots. Karan has good screen presence. Sonalli is fair. Rishi Kapoor plays a cameo and makes his presence felt. Satish has nothing to back his comic yet is a wary father while Upasana is loud without a cause as she has always been. Himani is her usual self. Kitu Gidwani and Parmeet fill the bill. 

Wedding Pullav is a film you can sit through but not carry home. Lacking face value, it faces a tough challenge of drawing the audience from show one. For after all, admission rates offer no discounts for a film sans face value.

Producers: Shashi Ranjan, Anu Ranjan

Director: Binod Pradhan

Cast: Anushka Ranjan, Diganth Manchale, Sonalli Sehgall, Karan Grover, Rishi Kapoor, Satish Kaushik, Himani Shivpuri, Parmeet Sethi, Upasana Singh, Kitu Gidwani

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