Rating : 5/10
Release Date : 25th February, 2011
Time : 120 minutes
Director : Aanand Rai; Writer : Himanshu Sharma; Music : Krsna
Starring : Kangana Ranaut, Madhavan, Deepak Dobriyal, Eijaz Khan, Swara Bhaskar, KK Raina, Jimmy Shergill
This is yet another film with a Jekyll & Hyde complex. A very good, funny, quirky first half, completely ruined by a second that descends into melodrama, soppiness and farce. The film is fun, though, due to certain likeable characters, none more so than Tanu (Kangana), her best friend Payal (Swara Bhaskar) and Manu’s (Madhavan’s) two buddies, Pappi (Deepak Dobriyal) and Jassi (Eijaz Khan).
Manu, the good doctor from London, has come to India to get married. The first prospective bride he see’s is Tanu and for him the world stops spinning right there and then. On a trip to Vaishno Devi (a hilarious Jai Mata Di sequence), to celebrate the upcoming union, he however finds out she’s not what he’d expected and they have to call it off. However, fate has other things planned for them …
This film belongs to Kangana. She has never looked better (in a very dhinchak way), is for a change not playing a psycho or drunk and acts with aplomb. The way she says ‘Mishra ji’ you never know whether she is mocking him or actually calling him. She is a rebel, someone who in places like Kanpur is called ‘a fast girl’, does all the things which are considered taboo, including a tattoo (“Teri shaadi main daaru peeke ulti nahin ki to kya kiya”). Deepak Dobriyal (“ab ya to bawal karo ya chup chap train se kat lo”) proves his fine acting credentials once more, as does Eijaz (who enjoys tharki songs and pays the price for his tharki ways before his marriage). And Swara brings a fine touch of Patna in her patois (“bhatakti aatma rahogi tum, kabhi chain nahin milega”).
Madhavan acts well but is loaded with a character who doesn’t appeal to me. I’m sure the weepy, silent man has many takers but I am not one of them. I stopped caring for him well before the second half, have no sympathies for those who make long faces and stand in a corner and pine away while the world passes them by. Goddamn it, man, do something. And if you do decide that she is the one for you, woo her, court her, communicate with her. Don’t stand there, looking mournful with puppy eyes ! Again, its nothing against Madhavan’s acting skills but more on the character he’s had to inhabit…
Its almost as if the director couldn’t decide what genre film he wanted to make. The first half is an enjoyable comedy, the second a weepy melodrama. The first has endearing characters, who amuse you with their wit and behaviour, and in the second a couple of them stifle you with an over-reliance on what used to be known as dialogue baazi. The first half is best exemplified by Mika’s peppy Punjabi number, the second by a funeral-like slow song. I am exaggerating a bit here, but only a bit. There is a scene in the second half (buying a wedding dress), which has shades of Four Weddings and a Funeral, but the way its done here versus the English film, demonstrates the difference in thought / genre.
In Tanu Weds Manu, the small town flavour can be tasted constantly, like a good paan, though, again like paan, after a while (especially the second half) you have no option but to spit it out…